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Miele hops on the robo-vacuum bandwagon with the RX1 Scout

It used to be that Roomba was the only robotic vacuum outfit in town, but in the past few years, a handful of other companies have joined the fray and released bots of their own. We’ve seen bots from dedicated robovac makers like Moneual and Neato, as well as few from huge electronics conglomerates like LG and Samsung. But the latest entry into the category comes from someone we didn’t expect: German high-end appliance manufacturer Miele.

Earlier this week at the Dwell on Design show in LA, the company showcased it’s first robotic vacuum, dubbed the RX1 Scout. Exact details on specs and features are still soemwhat hard to come by at this point, but Miele did spill the beans on a few details at the show. Unlike the seemingly random and chaotic method that Roomba uses to cover your floor, the Scout uses a top-mounted camera and special mapping software to ensure it doesn’t miss a spot. It’s also equipped with a gyro sensor to keep the bot on track, and a slew of anti-collision sensors to keep it from bumping into furniture and falling down stairs.

miele scoutThanks to it’s  advanced navigation system, the Scout can clean in a number of different modes – much like Moneual’s Rydis H68 Pro. In addition to the quick-access Auto mode, the bot also has dedicated modes for Spot and Corner cleaning, as well as a Turbo mode that cuts cleaning time in half.

But all those features won’t come cheap. The Scout retails for $999 right now, which is considerably more expensive than even iRobot’s top-of-the-line Roomba ($300 more to be exact) and nearly triple the cost of some budget models. We haven’t had a chance to try it out for ourselves just yet, but based on the features Miele has disclosed, we’re thinking it might be difficult to justify the high price tag — especially since bots from other manufacturers do all the same tricks for a fraction of the price.

The Scout is already on sale at authorized Miele retailers, and will be coming to Amazon in the near future.

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