We were rifling through recent robot vacuum news and came across something we had never even conceived before: a robot vacuum as a service – for the home. The article wasn’t an April Fool’s Joke that we had missed, it was a legitimate article about a well-founded startup called Matician.
Robot Vacuum as a Service
What Matician is bringing to market is a membership that offers the use of a combination vacuuming and mopping robot for the home. For $125 a month, you get the Matic robot along with an all-inclusive plan which includes maintenance and promises an up-to-date experience with your new mechanical house cleaner.
Does $125 sound like a lot for a month? Well, billing is annual. Some quick math yields that a yearly Matic membership will set you back $1,500. Currently, there are only a few premium robot vacuums around or north of that price point. Robot vacuums and mops that immediately come to mind which are in that range include the Roborock S8 Pro Ultra (review), Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra (review) and Ecovacs Deebot X1 Omni (review).
But, the difference is, when you purchase one of those robots you own it. After year one with your Matic, you’ll continue paying $125 a month. But, you won’t have to worry about maintenance, consumables, or even obsolescence according to the Matician website.
So, what exactly is Maticican offering in return? Here’s a quick rundown of Matic and its membership:
- Matic Robot Vacuum and Mop
- Voice Recognition
- 3D Mapping
- Automatic Mess Identification, Vacuuming and Mopping
- Adaptive Cleaning Based on Surface and Debris
- Off-limits Areas
- An Intuitive App
- Single HEPA-Bagged Disposal of Wet and Dry Waste
- Free Hardware Upgrade with Every New Generation
- Unlimited Refills on Brush Rolls, Mop Rolls, and HEPA Bags
- Unlimited Repairs and Maintenance
- Software Upgrades
- Generational Hardware Upgrades
- Cancel Any Time
There is definitely some innovative tech at work here. One nice touch is that In contrast to the high-end robot vacuums with smart features that we are aware of, the Matic doesn’t share data outside your home.
According to the Matician website, although the Matic uses cameras and algorithms to map and navigate a home, it does so using on-device vision algorithms. Impressively, “Matic processes everything on the device so no video or audio data ever leaves your home.” In fact, a connection to the Internet is only required for software updates or if you want to control the robot when you’re not home. It does require a local Wi-Fi connection to stream the map for the robot to its mobile phone app.
Also impressive is that Matic’s designers developed their own SLAM (simultaneous location and mapping) system from scratch.
So, the biggest question we have is, ”how good of a job does it do?” And a close second for Matician will be, “are consumers ready for a robot vacuum as a service?” Time will tell.
Matician and its Founders
If past performance predicts future success, Matician should do great. Founders Navneet Dalal and Mehul Nariyawala have an impressive track record that includes being early employees at Like.com and creating Flutter, which was acquired by Google in 2013. As Google employees, the pair worked on innovative products including Google Cardboard, Nest Cam, Nest Cam IQ, and Nest Hello Doorbell.
Currently, the Matician website is taking refundable membership deposits of $125 for customers in the United States. Robots are set to ship in the Fall of 2023. The membership does have a 30-day trial, which should help alleviate some of the questions around how good of a robot vacuum it is.
More information about Matic can be found at the Matician website.