In a press release late last week Neato Robotics, an esteemed robot vacuum manufacturer, announced that it will soon cease operations. The closure will mark the end of an 18-year innovative journey in robot vacuum history. German parent company Vorwerk cited a failure to meet economic goals despite numerous restructuring efforts as the reason behind the closure.
Vorwerk plans to fold Neato’s technology into a new R&D site, focusing on both professional and consumer robotics systems. This decision is part of Vorwerk’s 2025 restructuring strategy, which will concentrate more on selling vacuums and other robots through its German office.
Top Robot Vacuums
Neato Robotics, established in 2005 by three Stanford alumni, distinguished itself with its unique “D” shaped design, enabling the vacuums to clean better in corners with precision. The company also led the way in integrating groundbreaking features like Wi-Fi connectivity as early as 2011.
The most recent Neato robot vacuum release was in the fall of 2021 when both the D9 and D10 were made available. The latest models were on par with many manufacturers’ mid-range models, although the D10 would be considered the brand’s flagship robot. In contrast, flagship models from rival brands like Roborock, iRobot, and Ecovacs all ship with features not found on any Neato robot, such as mopping and auto-empty docks.
Comparing the Neato D10 against the iRobot Roomba Combo j7+ (read our review) or Roborock S8 Pro Ultra illustrates how Neato has fallen behind from an innovation standpoint. While those robots cost far more than the D10, at the D10’s price point, there are robot vacuums with mopping and auto-empty bins such as the Roborock Q7 Max+ (read our review) or the Ecovacs Deebot T9+ (see the T9+ on Amazon).
It appears that despite Neato’s contributions to the robotic vacuum industry, the intense competition from iRobot’s Roombas and budget robot vacuum models from brands like Eufy and Yeedi ultimately led to Neato’s demise.
5-year Neato Support Commitment
Current Neato vacuum owners need not worry, as Vorwerk ensures at least five years of spare parts availability, repair services, and cloud services infrastructure security. A 14-member team in Milan will oversee these services.
More information can be found in a press release issued by the Vorwerk Group.