Roomba robot vacuums gain Siri voice support as part of big update

The iRobot Genius 4.0 Home Intelligence update has started rolling out to all users.

With the iRobot Genius 4.0 update and Imprint Smart Mapping, customers can now create customizable Smart Maps for their Roomba i3 and i3+ robot vacuums, enabling them to send their robot to clean specific rooms via the iRobot Home app or through their preferred voice assistant. (iRobot Corporation)

iRobot's latest software update gives its Roomba robot vacuums and Braava jet robot mops the ability to respond to Siri voice commands. The Genius 4.0 Home Intelligence update adds Siri Shortcut Integration to the iRobot Home app, allowing iOS users to connect their devices to Apple's voice assistant. Similar to Google Assistant and Alexa users, they can set up their custom phrases or simply say "Hey Siri, ask Roomba to clean everywhere" to start the vacuum.

Genius 4.0 also gives users the capability to create customizable smart maps for the Roomba i3 and i3+ models, which they can access if they want their devices to clean specific rooms in the house. They can also create custom cleaning routines based on their schedules, automatons and the rooms they want to send the vacuum to. These particular features are now available in the Americas and will make their way to customers in Europe, Middle East and Africa by the end of the third quarter.

Users who own a Roomba s9/s9+, Roomba j7/j7+, Roomba i7/i7+ and Braava jet m6 — all Imprint Smart Mapping-capable robots — will have more control over how their robots clean, as well. They can program their machines to thoroughly clean a high traffic area, for instance, and give rooms that aren't always occupied a quick pass.

To prevent accidental starts, owners will be able to activate a Child & Pet Lock option in the iRobot Home app. When switched on, it deactivates the physical clean button on WiFi-enabled vacuums and mops, which can then only be activated through the application. In addition, a new Do Not Disturb feature ensures the machines won't switch on at times the user specifies, such as when they're sleeping or expected to be on video calls for work or for school. Finally, the update gives the Roomba j7 and j7+ the ability to avoid clothing and towels on the floor, in addition to the other objects (including poop!) they can already recognize.

While Do Not Disturb is already available globally, the other features might take some time to reach all users. The software update has already started making its way to customers worldwide, but the rollout won't be finished until the end of June.