A handy robot vacuum with some cool features

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TCL recently launched its Sweeva range of robot vacuum cleaners, Android Headlines had the opportunity to test the Sweeva 6500. It is one of the high-end models offered by the company. Is it a convincing device or is it being swept away by the competition? Let’s find out in this review.

In case you are wondering about more TCL products, Android Headlines reviewed the amazing TCL Stylus 5G (read the review here and find out the TCL Stylus vs Moto G Stylus 5G). It’s a compelling phone with a built-in stylus.

Cleaning

It doesn’t matter how smart a robot vacuum is if it doesn’t, well, vacuum. I used the Sweeva 6500 on a wooden floor, and it was able to do a pretty good job of picking up dust and dirt. The apartment I tested it in accumulates a ton of dust, so the difference between before and after using the vacuum cleaner is like night and day. The device does an excellent job of removing dust and dirt from hard-to-reach corners.

Sweeva 9

It also does a thorough job of cleaning. The Sweeva divides the area into sections or “rooms” and cleans them separately. First, it describes the room. Then he walks back and forth in that room making sure to touch every inch.

One thing I noticed, and it’s not really a complaint, is that he would come halfway through a room and randomly jump into another. After clearing the second room, he would then come back and finish the first.

As with most smaller vacuums, they are easy to clog with slightly larger objects, and this happened a bit more than I would have liked. Ordinary dust and debris are no problem. It’s just when you start getting scraps of paper or plastic wrappers. They can easily back up the brush. None of them could stop the brush, but they got stuck and interfered with cleaning.

Navigation

The Sweeva 6500 was able to navigate the apartment with a high level of precision. When you first use it, the vacuum sweeps the environment as it cleans. He will map the area and record this data for future cleaning.

The Sweeva 6500 uses a combination of its LED lights and physical collision detection to map the area. The front part of the chassis compresses like a button. So when it hits an object, it presses on the front section. This tells the Sweeva to stop and adjust its angle.

Sweeva 6

Once it “feels” its way around the object, it will update the map to reflect it. With this and the LED lights, the Sweeva is able to quickly navigate the apartment.

The navigation is so good that several times I turned the device around and placed it in another part of the apartment. After a few laps, he was able to identify exactly where he was.

The map

Once the Sweeva 6500 has mapped the area, you can view it using the TCL app. The app will give you a top view of it and automatically divide the environment into rooms. You can customize parts by renaming them and designating their size and shape.

Room customization is great as you can send the vacuum to clean individual rooms. If you want the vacuum to clean even smaller spaces, you can point it to a small spot on the map to clean.

If there are places where you don’t want the vacuum to go, you can designate no-go areas. The Sweeva was good at avoiding these areas but had a little trouble from time to time. You’ll just want to enlarge the area on the map a bit compared to the real thing.

Remote

An interesting mechanism that TCL has added to this vacuum cleaner is the remote control. You can access this feature on the TCL Home app. As you might guess, this feature lets you manually control the vacuum using the app buttons.

Sweeva 1

The feature works well, as there is very little delay between when you press the button and when the Sweeva responds. It’s just a shame there’s no invert button on the control UI.

The main complaint I have is that if the vacuum is currently automatically cleaning a room or the house, pressing a button on the controller will cause the current session to be cancelled. This means you won’t be able to quickly control the vacuum to tackle a small spot and resume the cleaning session. You will need to restart.

Battery

The Sweeva 6500 has good battery life. For my use, cleaning the entire area takes about 30 minutes. During this time, the vacuum loses approximately 15% of its battery from a full charge. The area I cleaned is approximately 269 square feet. This is with the suction turned on full, as well. It should be able to tackle bigger houses without any issues.

Voice prompts

A great thing about the TCL Sweeva 6500 is the fact that it comes with voice prompts. These are useful to let you know what is going on with the device. If the wheel is hanging, the brush is stuck, the bust tray is removed, the device is charging, etc., you will get an audible voice response.

Sweeva 5

The TCL Home app gives you a ton of options

The TCL Home app is truly the driving force behind the Sweeva 6500. Using the app, you can change your rooms, track the vacuum in real time as it cleans, locate the device if it gets lost, create a program, etc. much more. It’s the central hub for controlling and managing the vacuum, and it’s a must.

Should you buy the TCL Sweeva 6500?

There are plenty of robot vacuums in the market, and many of them are priced above $499. The TCL Sweeva could be considered a starter robot vacuum, but it doesn’t feel like it. You have access to many features that make it a top-of-the-line device. Along with that, it does a great job of cleaning the area.

Sweeva 4

The only complaint I would have is that the remotes are a bit clunky and this feature restarts the cleaning process. However, I highly recommend you to buy this device.


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