Samsung NaviBot S robot vacuum cleaner (preview)

Samsung’s newest robot house-slave gets smarter

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Samsung NaviBot S
  • Samsung NaviBot S
  • Samsung NaviBot S
  • Samsung NaviBot S


  • Auto-emptying
  • Smart room mapping
  • It’s a robot


  • High price
  • It's a robot

Bottom Line

Samsung's newest and smartest robot vacuum cleaner has some new user-friendly features. It comes at an increased price and we're still unsure as to how capable it is compared to a human, though.

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Yesterday, Samsung launched an updated version of its NaviBot robot vacuum cleaner — the NaviBot S. We’re assuming the S stands for ‘slim’, or ‘sleek’, or ‘smart’ (or maybe ’Skynet’), because the NaviBot S promises some interesting upgrades and more user-friendly features.

The NaviBot S is noticeably smaller than the previous model. At only 80mm tall it sits very close to the floor, sweeping away unobtrusively — it’s not as chunky as the Roomba 577 or Roomba 530, and its glossy plastic and smooth curves make it look more like the rest of Samsung’s generally attractive home appliance and consumer IT products.

Like the previous NaviBot, the S works with virtual guards to block off difficult areas (stairways, tables and chairs, and so on) so it won’t get stuck or lost. This system would take some setting up initially, but once you’ve got your robot house-trained it should do almost as good a job as a good ol’ fashioned human being — and at a fraction of the cost.

Visionary Mapping Plus

Samsung says the new NaviBot S is a ‘visionary cleaning device’, but we’re guessing this refers to the vacuum’s integrated camera rather than its ability to predict the future. In conjunction with its Visionary Mapping Plus system, the camera lets the NaviBot S build a visual map of your house through photos of your rooms’ ceilings.

This map lets the NaviBot S work out where walls and obstacles lie, and plot the best possible cleaning courses across your floors. Samsung doesn’t profess to say that the mapping is perfect — the vacuum will only try to avoid obstacles — but it’s better than a robot vacuum with no camera.

The camera and map setup also lets the NaviBot S remember where it finished cleaning last time, before recharging or emptying its bin, so it won’t clean spots again unnecessarily.

Dust Sensor Cleaning

Another touted feature is the NaviBot S’s ability to sense areas that are dirtier than others — when it is collecting a larger than normal amount of dust — and to give them extra vacuuming and sweeping attention.

It’ll boost its vacuum power in dustier and dirtier areas, so it should handle houses with mixed carpet and wood or tile floors without much fuss. We bet this will impact battery life, but with smart recharging this shouldn’t cause a problem.

Auto Dust Emptying

The more expensive of the two NaviBot S models in Australia will have an auto dust emptying feature — a first for a robot vacuum cleaner. The charging dock for the NaviBot S also functions as the add-on dustbin, with a 2L capacity. This boosts overall capacity to 2.6L, so the high-end NaviBot S won’t need emptying nearly as often as any other robot vacuum. When it gets full, the NaviBot S will return to the dock to empty itself — minimal human intervention required.


There are two NaviBot S models now available in Australia: the NaviBot S SR8950 for $1099, and the NaviBot S SR8980 for $1299. The higher-priced model includes the Auto Dust Emptying function.

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Bernard Parfrey


I own a Samsung model SR8751 robot cleaner. I bought it to SWEEP the tiled kitchen and the carpeted ( short pile ) rooms and passageways. Yes there are short pile scatter rugs all over the place too. It cleans them all without any serious problems, such as getting stuck, (never yet ! )
It will sweep under anything it can FIT underneath, around chair and table legs are no problem at all.
We have two dogs and a cat, the sweeper happily gobbles up any hair and grass they bring in to the house. It has a TV camera on top to map the ceiling and sensors all over it for various reasons.
It returns to its "dock" when you tell it to or when it thinks it needs a "feed" I have been told it won't work at night in the dark, because it can't find the ceiling on its TV, Does that really MATTER?
The dust holder certainly copes with "normal" household floors for two sweeping sessions, but as it seems to find fine dust and hair everywhere, it pays to unload the dust holder after each extended run. The dust holder is clear plastic, so you can see how it is coping even as it operates. Emptying the dust holder is so simple and quick, why let it fill up ?? There is a remote control with all the buttons you need to override the units own controls. The ONE thing it CANNOT do is reverse out of anywhere, but, because it is circular, it just spins on its axis and heads off again in the opposite direction - job done!
As long as you realise this is a floor SWEEPER, with a vacuum cleaner to whip the dust in to the dust holder and NOT a "vacuum cleaner" in the normal sense we think of, you will be surprised by what it can do! It can jump over door sills as long as they not higher than 1.5 cm, or have steep edges.
It does NOT like the following in its path, paper, mums wool offcuts, cotton threads, stones, fishing line, string or long hair !!! It will sweep up almost anything it finds,, but there it a limit.
Regular cleaning of the sweeper brush is strongly advised. It is a five minute job.
So far my unit has managed to find its way back to the charger docking station each time, but that is of no concern as I can pick it up and put it in front of the charger and it will proceed to lock on automatically. It is very quiet in operation and cleans the floors to my satisfaction. It does NOT upset the dogs or the cat at all. Would I buy another one, certainly would!

Elizabeth Green


I have just purchased the Samsung model SR8751 and although I think that the cleaning is excellent I'm finding that it keeps going back into rooms that it has already done, it cannot find the charger and it has never resumed where it left off.

I think I'm going to have to take it back although I really want it to work :(

Has anyone else had similar issues?

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