Mumbai-based Dustor may not be too well-known in the smart-home space, but the company is trying to make a mark with two products – Dustor Bot X1 and Dustor Bot X Pro vacuum cleaners. Both devices are available at different price points, but promise loads of features. Perhaps the most notable feature is that users can not only manage the robot vacuum cleaners via their smartphones, but we also get a dedicated remote control for offline usage. Of course, the Pro model, which we are reviewing today, gets more features such as the LDS navigation (LIDAR) to map your rooms more accurately. We get a charging dock, though the company does not offer an Automatic Dirt Disposal system that iRobot provides with its ‘Plus’ variants of Roomba i3 and i7. However, Dustor Bot X Pro allows users to use both mop and sweep cleaning functionalities – offering the best of worlds.
If you’re living in Delhi or any of the North-Western states in India that typically get dry weather (and loads of dust), a robotic vacuum cleaner can save a lot of time. These products could be extremely helpful during the COVID-19 pandemic, as we are spending more time at home. In case you’re planning to buy a robotic vacuum cleaner, here’s what you need to know about Dustor Bot X Pro, which is currently retailing at Rs 31,990 (MRP Rs 39,990).
Design: At 3Kg, the Dustor Bot X Pro is easy to carry from one room to another, and it features a round design – similar iRobot Roomba or Anker Eufy cleaners. The top panel features a glossy finish which is prone to scratch marks and fingerprint smudges. The Roomba vacuum cleaners, in that regard, do a better job by offering fabric finish at the top to repel visible fingerprint marks and dust. Its charging dock is compact and lightweight, but the bottom lacks good grip, so it keeps getting away from the spot when the device tries to find its way back ‘home’.
The top of the Dustor Bot X Pro also comes with the LIDAR sensor to map your room and stay away from stairs. At the bottom, we get two side brushes to wipe out dirt from corners apart from the wheels. The package includes two extra brushes once the existing brushes lose their form.
Customers can choose between mopping or sweeping by switching the dirt box or water tank manually. Users can smoothly switch boxes by pressing a dedicated button. The dirt box has a capacity of 600ml that should easily collect a week worth of dirt. The water tank can store 370ml of water, and the bottom includes washable microfiber fabric for mopping. As mentioned, we also get a remote control that lets users choose between three cleaning modes and even schedule the cleaning cycle. The remote includes a power and home button as well.
Overall, the Dustor Bot X Pro looks similar to most competitors in terms of design and uses more or less the same mechanism to travel around the house. Since the sides of the vacuum cleaner rub against the wall frequently while cleaning, we get to see loads of scratch marks. We also noticed this on the Rs 49,900-worth iRobot Roomba i3 Plus. Since the robot features a distinctly futuristic design for modern homes, users must also pre-decide a dedicated spot so that it doesn’t become an eye-sore later.
Set up and app performance: Setting up the device is fairly easy, though its packaging may appear slightly overwhelming for elderly customers. In that case, users must remember to simply plug in the charging station, manually place the vacuum cleaner on top till it attains full battery, and use the remote for cleaning. There’s a dedicated app to manage the Dustor Bot X Pro called Weback, which is available on Apple App Store and Google Play for iPhones and Android smartphones, respectively. I did not face any issues during the set-up, though users are advised to establish the connection over 2.5Ghz Wi-Fi.
The play button on the remote will start/ pause the cleaning process, and users can use the timer to set up cleaning time. You can also increase the suction mode with the button and the Dustor Bot X Pro can attain peak vacuuming power of up to 2880pa. As expected, the cleaning process at its peak performance is significantly loud which could make peaceful early mornings a tad bit unpleasant.
If you’re using the app, the user experience is much more pleasant and you can even see the map of the entire house. The Dustor Bot X Pro maps the house quite thoroughly, thanks to the LIDAR sensor, and it even detects the positions of furniture accurately. The app also lets users choose between the three cleaning modes and set the direction of the vacuum cleaner as per their preferences. If you want the robot vacuum to clean a particular area, the app offers that option too that some of its rivals have reserved for their costlier models. You can even control the movement manually via the app.
Cleaning: Despite good app performance, the core functionality of the robotic vacuum remains sweeping and cleaning, and the Dustor Bot X Pro offers good performance when compared to rivals. The device with its dual brushes performs relatively better than the Roomba i3 Plus in weeding out dirt from corners. However, it still cannot effectively clean corners, which is a common problem with most round-shaped robot vacuum cleaners. It will easily pull in soft dirt particles, including food crumbs and hair. But when it comes to collecting tiny plastic wrappers or paper, it is a hit and miss. A solution to this could be using the vacuum with max suction power, though you’ll get shorter battery life and more noise.
Similarly, the mopping functionality is decent, but you’ll get to see water marks at the end. The floor is effectively clean, but the marks leave an unprofessional finish.
In terms of battery, the Dustor Bot X Pro worked fine in a decently sized 2BHK flat with an area of roughly 800sq ft. It also comes with an auto-resume feature, so once the charge goes off, it will return to the charging dock and later resume cleaning from the same spot.
Verdict: Dustor Bot X Pro definitely gains an edge over rivals by offering both online and offline modes. The latter could be particularly useful for elderly customers who may not be too tech-savvy to operate via a smartphone. However, these customers may also find the huge packaging overwhelming, and the initial set-up process could be slightly complicated.
When we look at performance, I feel the iRobot Roomba i3 Plus did a better job at cleaning, though the Bot X Pro is not bad by any metric. That being said, the Dustor Bot X Pro also offers mopping functionality and still costs significantly less than iRobot’s ‘Plus’ variants.