iLife A11 review: specifications
General cleaning performance: 72.16
Score for pet hair: 58.25
Size: 13.78 inches x 13.78 inches x 3.72 inches
Mode: Vacuuming, mopping
Capacity on board garbage can: Only 0.45 liter rubbish bin / 0.3 liter rubbish bin with 0.2 liter water tank
Compatibility with smart homes: Alexa and Google Assistant
The holy grail of robot vacuum cleaners is the hybrid: A robot that vacuums and mops just as well. Enter the iLife A11, a 2-in-1 robotic vacuum cleaner that tries to do just that. The latest offering from iLife features LiDar navigation and Y-shaped mopping, which is intended to simulate a manual, human-powered mop. A11 performed well on hardwood, but did so poorly elsewhere that it had no chance of getting on our list of best robotic vacuum cleaners. Read the rest of our iLife A11 review to see where it fell.
iLife A11 Review: Price and Availability
iLife A11 was released in March 2022 and is currently available on Amazon.com for $ 399 with a $ 70 discount coupon. It comes with two trash cans: one for vacuuming only and one for vacuuming and mopping. The other is a combination of water tank and rubbish bin as the A11 is capable of vacuuming and drying at the same time. Also in the box is a reusable microfiber mopping pad and an extra trash can filter.
iLife A11 Review: Design
Shiny black never goes out of style with robot vacuum cleaners, does it? iLife A11 continues the trend, wearing a sleek, reflective carbon black lid, complete with ILIFE etched in silver on the raised LiDar hood.
A simple oval rubber button in silver can be used as a power and home button. Under the thin plastic lid is the rubbish bin and a cleaning tool on board.
Turn the iLife A11 over and you will see two thick rubberized wheels on each side of the brush roller and a small omni-directional wheel at the front. There is also a three-spoke brush that helps to collect debris right in front of the right wheel. The brush roller is an alternating mixture of rubber fins and bristles to help guide debris into the vacuum cleaner’s esophagus.
Once inserted in the 2-in-1 trash can, the iLife A11 is able to vacuum and dry at once, or handle each task separately. Before moping, attach the removable microfiber pad to the mopboard on the back of the A11. The pillow is fastened with velcro and is easy to remove for drying. Unlike iRobot and Roborock, iLife does not offer a branded cleaning solution. In fact, the company does not recommend using any cleaning solution other than water.
When I looked at the iLife A11, I had a feeling of deja vu. It is the same unit body and base as both the Wyze Robot Vacuum and the Proscenic M6 Pro. While the M6 Pro uses a different color scheme, the A11 and Wyze are almost identical, except for the difference in logos and the A11’s mopping addition – the A11 shares that feature with the M6 Pro.
iLife A11 Review: Vacuum Cleaner Performance
Unfortunately for the iLife A11, the performance of this robot vacuum cleaner came closer to the Proscenic M6 Pro than the Wyze Robot Vacuum. Although I was impressed with how quiet the iLife A11 cleaned, it got a disappointing average score of 72.16, worse than most vacuum cleaners I have tested. It was well below the Wyze Robot Vaccum’s score of 92.73 and Roborock S4 Maxaverage of 96.25.
The irony of the iLife A11 robot vacuum cleaner is that it performed well on hardwood floors, but it could not match that performance on carpets.
|Total score||Grain||Cat litter||Dog hair|
|Wyze robot vacuum cleaner||92.73||100||91.2||87|
|Roborock S4 Max||96.25||98.38||96.38||94|
|Roomba i3 +||90.1||100||94.9||75.5|
|Proscenic M6 Pro||80.39||98.13||74.05||69|
|Eufy RoboVac X8 Hybrid||92.39||94.35||88.08||94.75|
On bare hardwood floors, the iLife A11 was a legit competitor, earning a perfect 100 on cleaning up Cheerios and a respectable 93.65 for picking up litter. When vacuuming, the iLife A11 tackles the edges of an area first, then switches to a serpentine pattern on the inside.
This pattern made it possible for it to clean up 91% of the dog hair in our test area, even though a large lump accumulated on one of the wheels during testing. It eventually shook its hair, but did not return to pick it up. Although it missed a perfect collection of pet hair, the A11 scored just two points below the iRobot Roomba i3’s 93% cleanup speed.
|Grain||Cat litter||Dog hair|
|Wyze robot vacuum cleaner||100||97.15||100|
|Roborock S4 Max||96.75||97.75||100|
|Roomba i3 +||100||95.7||93|
|Proscenic M6 Pro||100||97.3||100|
|Eufy RoboVac X8 Hybrid||98.7||90||100|
The carpet is where everything fell apart for the iLife A11. Although it collected 98% of the cereal in our test area, it performed poorly on the litter and dog hair tests, taking up 24.8% and 25.5%, respectively.
|Grain||Cat litter||Dog hair|
|Wyze robot vacuum cleaner||100||85.25||74|
|Roborock S4 Max||100||95||88|
|Roomba i3 +||100||94||58|
|Proscenic M6 Pro||96.25||50.8||38|
|Eufy RoboVac X8 Hybrid||90||86.15||89.5|
iLife A11 review: Mopping performance
Moping the floor with the iLife A11 was very similar to my experience with other hybrid vacuum cleaner and moping robots. It cleans with water alone via a thin microfiber pad attached to the underside of the robot. Water drips from the tank onto the cushion and moistens it as the cushion moves along the floor. Unlike some other hybrids, the A11 moves in a Y-shaped pattern while moping, which more closely mimics how someone using an actual mop would clean a floor.
Like most other hybrids, I do not trust the A11 to mop the floors unattended. Neither does iLife. A warning on the water tank specifically says “Do not use the water tank without someone at home.” Although the A11 did not release much water, even when set to maximum seepage, it is not worth risking a wet carpet – especially if the vacuum cleaner gets stuck.
iLife A11 review: Setup, app and mapping
iLife has a new app that comes with A11, called iLife Vac Global (Android and iOS (opens in new tab)). There is a QR code for it on the bottom of the vacuum cleaner, and you will want to use it as it can be easily confused with the other iLife robot vacuum cleaner apps available in both app stores. The app requires you to create a new account or log in and send a verification code via email after clicking “Submit Code.” After entering the verification code, I kept getting a password error. I finally discovered that you need to enter (or re-enter) the password after entering the verification code. The app does not make this clear, which was frustrating. If it all seems like too much stress, the A11 also comes with an old-fashioned remote control.
iLife A11 was able to quickly make a map of my first floor, but it was not completely accurate. In general, LiDar-based robot vacuum cleaners will often show vague areas that are just out of the robot’s reach. The laser sees these areas to begin with, but in theory, on subsequent runs, the bot learns the design of a room and delimits the map accordingly. That did not happen with the A11. The map generated by A11 included a lot of extra space in the dining room and added a whole extra room to my kitchen area. Although I would love the extra square footage, the bot discovered floor space that was simply not there. I could not delete these extra areas from the map, nor did they disappear when I tried to create a new map. The A11 even decided that an “imaginary” space in my kitchen was its own room and divided it accordingly.
Even more frustrating was that I was not able to divide the rooms in my house mostly with open floor plan. Although the iLife A11 automatically created sections for two rooms (the bathroom and the aforementioned phantom room), the rest of the sharing work was up to me. But when I first drew a line to separate my living room from the dining room, I could not make another section on the map that would cross it anywhere. Essentially, the first line I drew stretches invisibly to the edges of the map. I could only make several lines that were somewhat parallel to the first line by dragging my finger across the phone screen. Do you want to adjust a line a bit? Sorry, you’m unlucky. If you tap anywhere near a newly drawn line, it will be deleted, which means you will have to redraw it.
If you can get beyond the map madness, the iLife A11 has several cleaning options. In addition to room-specific cleaning, there are modes for edge, point and area cleaning. There is even a manual cleaning mode that allows you to control the vacuum cleaner with a directional pad on the screen.
Scrub mode is used for normal mopping, although the amount of water that seeps is adjustable. The suction is also adjustable with eco, standard and turbo options.
iLife A11 Review: Dom
Hybrid robotic vacuum cleaners and mops may be the future of automated home cleaning, but the iLife A11 still has a way to go. Although I was initially impressed with this robot vacuum cleaner’s cleaning performance on the floor only, it could not get the job done on carpets.
Along with a frustrating app, the A11 does not live up to the $ 399 hype. Even if you have a carpet-free home, there are better, less frustrating and less expensive options such as the top-rated Roborock S4 Max or Wyze Robot Vacuum. The iLife A11 has a lot of promise – but in the end it does not last.