ASUS subsidiary AGAiT Technology is the latest to have a bash at realizing the dream of robots performing domestic tasks with the EC01 E-Cleaner robotic vacuum cleaner. As well as offering similar cleaning functionality to that of its rivals, the EC01 also benefits from a sanitizing UV lamp which disinfects as the unit vacuums.

The E-Cleaner travels around a dirty room in up to five pre-programmed cleaning patterns at between 16.5 and 18.5 cm per second and providing said room is of 4.8m x 3.2m proportions, it is claimed that it will complete its task in some 30 minutes. As the unit vacuums up the dust and dirt, an extra level of cleanliness is afforded by the onboard sanitizing UV lamp (which is claimed to be good for 6000 hours of use). Should it come frighteningly near to the top of a flight of stairs, its dramatically named cliff sensor will help ensure that it won't come a cropper.

The 14.4V Ni-MH rechargeable battery will recharge in three hours which will provide enough power for 90 minutes of cleaning. When the unit detects that its charge is low, or when it has finished its chores, it will automatically return to the charging station. And to lessen the chance of misplacement, AGAiT has included a place in the upper cover for storage of the remote control.

According to Taiwan Economic News, the E-Cleaner will be made available shortly to households in China and Taiwan for less than NT$5,000 (about US$154), cheaper than the recently announced Neato and the established Roomba.

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