You might imagine that the storied company would have been among the first to plunge into the robot vacuum market. But Hoover's new lineup of robovacs came out a few weeks after models from other industry leaders, including Bissell and Dyson.
The Hoover Quest 1000 (MSRP $699.99) has a slick design and WiFi connectivity. When we let it loose in our obstacle course, it effortlessly glided along without careening into furniture or getting stuck on throw rugs. However, that gentleness comes at the cost of superior pickup. For a vacuum that sells for almost $700, it missed too much dirt and debris.
In other words, this robot is great at sprucing up the floor, but it's no good at Hoovering.
How well does it work?
After spending a week with it, we can safely say that this Hoover works well as a floor maintainer. It spent around 15 minutes cleaning up our robot obstacle course, but in that time it only picked up 8 grams of dirt. To put that in context, that's twice as fast than most robot vacuums, but with a little more than half the pickup.
While the Quest did not have the most robust clean overall, it didn't smack furniture or get stuck on carpets. When you combine its dexterity with a smartphone app, the Quest suddenly earns its keep.
Imagine you're at work and you get a text telling you that guests are coming over. Just tap a button on the simple smartphone app, and the Hoover will give your floors a once over—no matter where you are. We even directed the Quest to "trouble spots"—where we know dirt accumulates.
Of course, how well it works will depend on your home's WiFi connection. If you frequently find yourself unplugging your cable modem to reset it, chances are the Hoover won't always clean on command.
What are the biggest issues?
As we like to say in the lab, "A robot can't clean where its brushes haven't been." The Hoover Quest got into fewer places than some cheaper, but more aggressive, models. The reason for this is that the more gentle a robot vacuum is, the less likely it is to scuff your furniture or get stuck.
The Hoover also failed to get atop our dark-colored, high-pile carpet. That's not a surprise: most of the robot vacuums we've tested are designed to shy away from tall carpets and dark surfaces so they don't get stuck, or fall down the stairs.
Who should buy this Hoover?
The Quest costs less than the Dyson and the iRobot, but offers comparable dirt pickup. The Neato retails for around the same price and cleans better—which is why it remains our top pick.
Meet the tester
Jonathan Chan currently serves as the Lab Manager at Reviewed. If you clean with it, it's likely that Jon oversees its testing. Since joining the Reviewed in 2012, Jon has helped launch the company's efforts in reviewing laptops, vacuums, and outdoor gear. He thinks he's a pretty big deal. In the pursuit of data, he's plunged his hands into freezing cold water, consented to be literally dragged through the mud, and watched paint dry. Jon demands you have a nice day.See all of Jonathan Chan's reviews
Checking our work.
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