Last year, the Neato Botvac joined the Internet of Things with the Wi-Fi-enabled Botvac Connected, allowing users to boss it around with a smartphone app. Now the little robo-maid is earning its Connected title all over again, with Neato adding voice control functionality through Amazon's Alexa.
The Botvac Connected is already a pretty nifty robot vacuum in itself, with the app allowing users to set up the bot's regular routine, start or stop a full house clean, and remotely drive the device to the area that needs attention. Laser-guided navigation means it won't Mr. Magoo its way around the house, while its filter lets it better pick up small particles and its D-shape helps it squeeze right into the corners.
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The voice activation comes in the form of a new Alexa skill, downloadable through the Alexa app. This allows users to bark voice commands at an Amazon Echo or Echo Dot, which will relay them to the vacuum. For now, the Botvac can be instructed to start and stop, pause and resume cleaning, but Neato says further functionality is on the way.
For users who already have a Botvac Connected, the Amazon Alexa skill is available now in the US and UK, and will be released by the end of the year in Germany. For those who don't have the vacuum yet, Neato is sweetening the deal by throwing in a free Amazon Echo Dot with every purchase between Black Friday and December 23.
Source: Neato Robotics