They say that if you want to make your home burglar-proof, you have to think like a burglar so let's give that process a spin. Let's say you're breaking into your own home. First, you'd avoid surveillance, like security cameras. You'd probably check for cameras by looking up, on walls, maybe even on shelves. But would you ever look at your carpet? Probably not, which makes HOM-BOT Turbo+, the star of today's review and an interesting security solution. Instead of watching over your home from a higher vantage point, it watches from below.
What Is HOM-BOT Turbo+?
HOM-BOT Turbo+ by LG is a robovac. You know, the kind of vacuum your pet loves to play with.
For navigation, HOM-BOT Turbo+ uses two cameras, a.k.a. a Dual Eye 2.0™ Mapping System. The camera on top captures up to thirty images per second to create a visual map of a room. The camera on the bottom maps the floor for terrain changes and edges to help it avoid obstacles like stairs. It also features a digital bumper, which is an invisible fence around the device that detects obstructions. It uses a combination of ultrasonic sensors and optical sensors as well as an accelerometer and a gyroscope.
HOM-BOT Turbo+ works on tiled floors, carpets, and hardwood floors. It can also clean rugs, although it needs close supervision while doing so. While cleaning, it uses its square shape and two long side brushes to reach deep into corners. It also has several cleaning modes such as Spiral (for cleaning specific spots), ZigZag (for cleaning large spaces with few obstacles), and Cell-by-Cell (ideal for complex areas).
As for its battery, it runs on a 2330mAh lithium ion rechargeable battery. The battery can power the robovac for up to 100 minutes of turbo cleaning, but it requires three hours of charge time on its docking station to get there. Like most robovacs, the HOM-BOT Turbo+ can go back to its charging station before it runs out of battery. If it happens to be cleaning during that time, it will remember where it left off and resume cleaning after charging.
HOM-BOT Turbo+ Security Features
Unlike other robovacs, HOM-BOT is designed not only to clean your home but also to guard it. It has a couple of security features made possible by a third camera positioned on its front. These features are called HomeView and HomeGuard.
Utilizing HOM-BOT's ability to move around your house, HomeView allows you to control your robovac with your smartphone while streaming video remotely. To enable HomeView, you're going to need the SmartThinQ app, an app designed to control and monitor LG's smart appliances and devices. From the app, you can control HOM-BOT's direction while it streams videos to your phone. If you want, you can also take pictures or record videos to store locally.
HomeGuard also uses HOM-BOT's front-facing camera, but unlike HomeView, HomeGuard doesn't require the robovac to move about. All you need to do is face the device toward an area you want it to monitor. Once you have everything in place, you can activate HomeGuard via the mobile app. Activating HOM-BOT is similar to arming a security camera's motion sensor. It prompts the robovac's camera to detect motion. If it detects motion, a notification will be sent to your phone along with up to five still images. After receiving an event, you can use HomeView to check out a live feed. If you see an intruder, you can turn on your robovac and hope that the whirring sound of its motor is enough to scare away anyone who shouldn't be there.
Our Thoughts on HOM-BOT Turbo+
With its security features, HOM-BOT can not only sweep the floor but also sweep intruders off their feet. However, keep in mind that HOM-BOT is NOT designed for home security. Its security features are a bonus for those who own one, but I don't recommend that you buy it specifically for home security. There are other more security-minded products out there that can do what HOM-BOT does plus more for a lower cost.
That said, LG offers a full array of security and automation devices that work with HOM-BOT. If you're planning to buy HOM-BOT Turbo+, I suggest that you check out LG's SmartThinQ ecosystem as well.
You can purchase HOM-BOT Turbo+ from LG-recognized dealers near you or you can buy it online from lg.com for $999. Take note that LG also offers a HOM-BOT Turbo robovac, which has almost the same features as Turbo+ but without HomeGuard and HomeView. If you see a HOM-BOT selling for under $999, it's probably an older model. If you want to be sure you're buying the right vac, the product code for the HOM-BOT Turbo+ is CR5765GD.
Photo Credit: LG