The Roomba paved -- or cleaned -- the way for a long list of robot vacuum copycats to hit the market, but very few offer a compelling reason to not just buy the original autonomous floor cleaner. However, what Samsung's new VR9000H robo vac lacks in eye-catching product naming, it makes up for with a neat feature that lets you manually steer the vacuum around your floor using an included laser pointing remote. It's like having a cat that gets rid of hairballs instead of creating them.
As far as autonomous vacuums go, the VR9000H has all the bells and whistles you could want including a cyclone-action suction unit, obstacle avoidance sensors so it won't crash or fall off stairs, and intelligent programming so it cleans a floor as thoroughly as possible while it criss-crosses a room.
But those systems are never perfect, or they don't always start cleaning where you want them to, so Samsung's included a remote with the Vr9000H that projects a circular laser target onto the floor that the vacuum will track and follow using a front-mounted camera. When it's available come September the inclusion of that handy feature also means the VR9000H comes with a hefty $US1300+ price tag, but when you factor in the entertainment value of steering this unit around with a laser pointer, it just might be worth opting for this over the Roomba. [SamBlog.de via Appliancist]