Shark IQ vs Roomba i7 (and i7+) Comparison Review

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Hands-off automated cleaning is what we all want with our robot vacuums. These two vacuums, Shark IQ vs Roomba i7, do their best to fulfill our wishes.

These two robot vacuums put up a good fight. Who will come out the Winner?

If you’re in a hurry, the Roomba i7 is the better overall robot vacuum. It comes at a higher price, but the iRobot brand and history of quality with their vacuums stands out compared to the Shark IQ. If you have a higher budget, give consideration to the Roomba i7+ that gives you even more hands-off cleaning because you won’t need to empty the dustbin yourself.

iRobot Roomba i7 (7150) Robot Vacuum- Wi-Fi Connected, Smart Mapping, Works...
  • POWERFUL PERFORMANCE AND POWERFUL PICK-UP - Pulls in stubborn dirt and messes with a Premium 3-Stage Cleaning System and 10X the Power-Lifting Suction.
  • GUIDED BY SERIOUS SMARTS - With vSLAM navigation, the i7 learns the layout of your home & builds personal Smart Maps, enabling it to expertly clean & navigate in neat, efficient rows. If it’s running low on battery, it recharges & resumes cleaning.
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iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550) Robot Vacuum with Automatic Dirt Disposal-Empties...
  • CLEANS UP AFTER YOU, AND ITSELF - Forget about vacuuming for months at a time with the CLEAN BASE Automatic Dirt Disposal that allows the i7+ to empty itself for up to 60 days. AllergenLock Bags capture and trap 99% of pollen and mold.
  • POWERFUL PERFORMANCE & POWERFUL PICK-UP - Pulls in stubborn dirt & messes with a Premium 3-Stage Cleaning System & 10X the Power-Lifting Suction.

Last update on 2020-10-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Let’s take a look at the quick comparison of these robot vacuums before diving into the details of the features and benefits.

One note about the difference between the Roomba i7 and i7 plus. The base i7 robot vacuum is the same on both, so I’ll be referring to both when I say “i7.” The i7+ simply comes with the Clean Base unit packaged in, so the package price is slightly cheaper. If you don’t have the budget now for the Clean Base unit, you can buy it separately later.

FeaturesNavigation TechnologyFiltrationWiFi CapableScheduled CleaningDust Bin CapacityWeight
#1. Shark IQ
Shark IQ

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IQ NAVHigh-Efficiency FilterYesYes1850 ml XL capacity6.9 Pounds
#2. Roomba i7
Our Best Pick
iRobot Roomba i7

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iAdapt 3.0High-Efficiency FilterYesYes300 ml7.4 Pounds

Features

Size Dimensions

The Shark IQ measures up at dimensions of 12.9” x 12.6” x 3.5”. It’s sleek design and matte black color is both stylish and functional, and the unit features a front bumper as well – unfortunately a feature that the Roomba came up with first! 

The Roomba i7 measures at 13.31 ” wide and 3.62” tall. Although it is slightly larger than its predecessors in the Roomba historical range, this is still a great size, considering the amount of features that are jam packed into this robot vacuum.

Weight

At a weight of 5.87lbs, the Shark IQ proves to be lightweight and compact – one of the key features many customers look out for when considering a robot vacuum for purchase.

The Roomba i7 is noticeably heavier at 7.28lbs. But an extra pound or so of weight isn’t really a deal-breaker – I’m more interested in the features and functions.

Battery and Capacity

The Shark IQ‘s 14.8v lithium ion battery gives enough juice for it to run for about 90 minutes nonstop on a cleaning job. When it senses that its battery levels are critically low, the Shark IQ finds its way back to the docking station for a recharge. It usually takes about five hours for a full charge from then.

The Roomba i7 also has a 14.8v lithium ion battery also runs at 90 minutes, however a full charge from empty takes only 120 minutes, at least 3 hours faster than the Shark IQ.

The i7 also automatically goes back to the Roomba Home Base when its battery is running low with its Recharge and Resume feature. It’ll pick up cleaning where it stopped after recharging.

Filtration

The Shark IQ uses high-efficiency filters in its cleaning system that traps 99% of dust and dirt to harmful allergens and particles in the air that may be potentially dangerous to you and your family.

The Roomba i7 also features similar high-efficiency filters that can protect you and your family. This is great news for allergy sufferers living together with you.

Brushes, Suction & Cleaning Technology

The Shark IQ has 3 levels of cleaning power to choose from (Eco, Normal and Max) that does a satisfactory job at cleaning your home. When we say satisfactory – this just means it gets the job done without any major issues.

The Roomba i7 however, boasts 1700 Pa of suction power –   a feature that makes it stronger than at least 77% of all robot vacuums on the market today – including the Shark IQ.

On the Shark IQ, two side brushes spin on either side of the unit, grabbing debris that it goes over and the single brushroll in the center takes that debris into the suction system. Simple and basic functionality.

However, one of the common complaints about the Shark IQ is the brush roll is notoriously prone to getting pet hair stuck around it. The dust cup on the Shark IQ can hold about 600 mL of dust and debris before having to be emptied.

The dustbin capacity for the Roomba i7 is 300 mL, less than that of the Shark IQ. One of the main drawbacks of the Roomba against the Shark is that there is no self-emptying function on the i7. This feature is only available on the i7+ which is one level up.

You have to manually empty the i7 bin when it’s full – which is a hassle when you just want a complete hands-free cleaning experience. But luckily, the i7 plus has the Clean Base docking station that holds up to 30 dustbins worth.

Navigation System

When it comes to navigation and mapping systems, the Roomba i7 comes out as the clear winner this round with its iAdapt 3.0 system. Onboard sensors work in tandem with a built-in camera to create a 3d map of your home as it cleans.

It makes easy work of complicated home layouts and makes cleaning more efficient the more passes it does across your floors. The i7 will also remember the virtual floor plan map of your home to be able to clean more efficiently.

The Shark IQ is a little less advanced when it comes to mapping software. Don’t get the wrong idea – it’s not entirely dumb, but it’s not a genius either. Some users have reported making up to 20 full battery-emptying runs before their Shark IQ vacuum finishes creating a virtual map of their home, but your experience may vary.

Perhaps it just needs a few software updates from the Shark engineers to get this right. In any case, if this is a huge consideration for you, then maybe the Roomba i7 would be a better choice.

Mobile App and Voice Assistant Control

The Roomba i7 and Shark IQ robot vacuums both have WiFI connectivity and mobile apps that’re compatible with iOS and Android smartphones.

Using your smartphone and the iRobot Home App, you are able to control your Roomba i7 anytime, and anywhere you are. The SharkClean App does the same for your Shark IQ vacuum.

The Roomba i7 can be operated via voice command through Alexa and Google Home, making for a sweet hands-free experience (until you need to clean out the dustbin). The Shark IQ shares the same feature as well, making it great for busy hands at home.

Maintenance

The Roomba i7’s dustbin has to be manually cleaned out once it is full (it will notify you in the app).

The Shark IQ automatically cleans out its dustbin when it goes back to the Shark docking station and the station itself only needs to be cleaned out once a month in normal homes, making for easy operation.

Changing filters on a regular basis is a good idea to help keep your robot vacuums in top shape.

Additional Features

A dual virtual wall barrier device comes as a standard feature with every purchase of the Roomba i7. The Shark IQ doesn’t have that, however we feel that repeating the fact that the Shark has a self-emptying bin is enough of an additional feature in itself compared to the Roomba i7.

The i7 and Home app also has the ability to create Keep Out Zones on the virtual floor plans on your phone. You can draw rectangular zones that you don’t want the Roomba to go into, protecting any valuables.

Pros and Cons

Shark IQ:

Pros

  • Self-emptying bin
  • Lightweight
  • Cheaper price point

Cons

  • Poor mapping capability
  • Significantly more charging time
Shark IQ video (Consumer Review)

Roomba i7:

Pros

  • High suction power
  • Great navigation software
  • All-round better performance

Cons

  • More expensive
  • No self-emptying bin
Roomba i7+ review: Everything you need to know

Shark IQ vs Roomba i7 Who is Each for?

Shark IQ: For those who want a basic robovac unit that can do the cleaning job without hassle

Roomba i7 : For those who want more power in their cleaning, especially homes with carpets prone to soiling and dust accumulation.

Final Thoughts

My Winner here is the more powerful, high-quality Roomba i7, even though the base model package doesn’t self-empty.

I’d suggest to get the self-emptying one, the Roomba i7+ with the Clean Base unit. It costs more, but it’s well worth it for almost complete automated cleaning.

Last update on 2020-10-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If budget is more of a concern, the Shark IQ is the choice here between these two robot vacuums.

Whichever one you choose will be a matter of value over cost, so take your pick and see which works best for your home.

Read more comparisons on both the Shark IQ and Shark i7 at one of the links below.