After becoming a leading brand in the smart home with devices to motorise curtains, thermometers, sensors and smart locks, SwitchBot has also recently debuted in the robot vacuum cleaner market in the pursuit to create a complete smart home environment.
While a normal robot vacuum cleaner has a diameter of about 35 centimetres, SwitchBot’s debut model is decidedly more compact with a diameter of just 24,8 centimetres, making it suitable for narrow spaces and small environments. The charging and emptying base is also smaller, especially when compared to that of particularly advanced models
Despite its Lilliputian dimensions the developers still had to cleverly include all the sensors and a good motor within a very small frame. The SwitchBot K10+ still manages to rely on a full-fledged LiDAR system for navigation, has collision sensors, anti fall sensors a fairly wide main brush and a large side brush. Furthermore, the manufacturer has stated that the SwitchBot K10+ is one of the quietest robot vacuum cleaners on the market, being suitable for night-time operations.
WHAT’S IN THE BOX
DESIGN AND CHARACTERISTICS
SwitchBot K10+ is one of the smallest robot vacuum cleaners on the market, being about half the size of the traditional device. It does measure 24.8 × 24.8 × 9.2cm, so it should easily be able to slip into areas where the regular-sized robot vacuum could not.
The top cover on this model is magnetic, and once opened you can easily access the robot’s power slider and the small dust collection tank which, once dismantled, also allows you to replace the paper filter present. In the lower part of the device there is space for two well-built wheels which almost seem oversized on such a small device; SwitchBot K10+ moves easily around the house without difficulty, he can climb carpets but not climb small steps. It is equipped with a brush for wrapping hair that can be removed and washed if necessary, and a long side brush at the upper end.
Near the rear edge, SwitchBot has added a150ml dust bin which is not so large but I suppose it shouldn’t be that much of an inconvenience considering that the robot vacuum relies on a self-cleaning station.
There is also a small pack of wet wipes that can be installed on the lower part thanks to thespecific MOP accessory provided; this is perhaps one of the few compromises that must be made and which must be considered during the purchase phase, conceptually the idea of SwitchBot is good, practically speaking it is not among the best solutions on the market in terms of floor washing, where the technology is already mature, but I appreciate the effort of SwitchBot to include in such a small robot some kind of basic floor washing sistem.
The most interesting thing, however, is represented by the charging and self-emptying station: it too is one of the most compact on the market and furthermore it is also equipped with a very powerful suction motor which allows you to empty the K10+ dirt tank in just a few seconds and a disposable 4L dustbag estimated at approximately 70 days of cleaning necessary before changing the bag, we are dealing with a very compact plastic case measuring only 32.3 × 26.1 × 21.0cm.
Reducing the size of a robot has inevitable consequences, mainly due to lack of space. Here the battery has a capacity of 3,200 mAh, which effectively allows the robot to work for approximately two hours, a value referring to the minimum suction power. Using the average power it was possible to complete the cleaning of an environment of approximately 80 square meters, with a trip to the base for emptying, with a residual charge of approximately 36%, enough to allow the cleaning of up to approximately 100 square meters.
The SwitchBot K10+ offers four suction power levels, the first being Quiet, followed by Standard, Strong and Max, the suction power seemed more than sufficient for such a small frame but for large amounts of dust and dirt I recommend using the max setting or a second pass, the noise just starting to annoy at the highest suction levels, here are the levels detected:
Another thing to point out is that the robot cannot vacuum and wash at the same time given that due to lack of space the mop pad must be positioned above the main brush and when detected it automatically disables suction and brushing.
NAVIGATION AND APP
The navigation in space is very good and the mapping precise too, from the application you can choose to start charging, change the suction power and change the automatic emptying frequency.
The app is quite clear, even if the translations (at least in Italian) are not always optimal. The robot quickly maps your home, but you need to carry out at least a complete cleaning to be able to divide your home into rooms, in this way it will be possible to start cleaning not only the whole house, but also a specific area or one and more rooms. This also applies to programming, you can also correct the map, rename rooms and create new ones (up to 10).
A truly intelligent choice was to integrate the robot management software into the same Switchbot app with which all the company’s devices are controlled, everything is well integrated and gives the possibility of creating smart cleaning scenarios combined with other SwitchBot devices and voice assistants such as Alexa and Google.
The application does not yet have many features, other than the installation of a voice package (for now only English), the activation of the do not disturb mode based on time and a couple of extra modes, which concern the reduction of collisions and the one for increasing the suction power on carpets which however does not seem to rely on a dedicated sensor, fortunately there is no shortage of no-go zone and virtual walls functions, a useful and easily addable function, for example, is to select in scheduled cleaning the sequence of rooms to clean.
The Reduced Collision Mode was enabled by default and it’s useful if you don’t want the SwitchBot K10+ to bump so often into furniture, although the simple infrared sensors do not prevent the robot from hitting furniture, tables, chairs etc. it approaches obstacles quite delicately and the front bumper system which relies on a digital switch promptly detects collisions without getting stuck on obstacles.
SwitchBot K10+ is sold at an official price of 499 €; thanks to various offers on the official store and on Amazon the device can be purchased for a price discounted of less then 400 euros, an important price if you consider that the robot in question is not equipped with a valid floor washing functions, but he is the undisputed leader in terms of size, finding a robot vacuum cleaner smaller and more compact than this is currently impossible, and this guarantees the SwitchBot K10+ to get to clean where others can’t, it is the perfect robot for those who have a small home, 60/70 square meters is its perfect size, with narrow spaces that a “traditional” robot would struggle to maneuver through. It has the great advantage of having a compact charging base, which takes up very little space and can find space in any room without being a bulky presence and has very satisfactory navigation and suction performance despite its dimensions.