The Neato product family is made up of some of the most impressive vacuums on the market, and the Neato Botvac Connected and Neato D5 are two incredibly capable smart vacuums available at a fair price. However, we feel that the newer D5is the superior choice, as Neato continues to improve on their formula with every release.
The Neato D5 represents a significant upgrade over the Botvac Connected in a number of different categories, although it is missing a few perks like eco-turbo mode, additional run time, and superior brush mechanisms.
We break down the similarities and differences of the Neato D5 vs. Connected below, but feel free to jump directly to the sections that interest you most using the navigation bar.
Neato Botvac Connected vs. D5 — Things in Common
Remote Control – Both the D5 and Botvac Connected are controlled primarily through the Neato app. In its intuitive interface, it’s easy to adjust various settings and schedule your cleanings for the timeframe that works best for you. Whether it’s a daily cleaning, every other day, or a more personalized schedule, you’ll be able to handle everything with ease through the dedicated app.
WiFi Connectivity – Both models communicate over WiFi which opens up useful features like easy control through the Neato app. However, it’s important to keep in mind that these vacuums only work over 2.4GHz frequencies. If you use 5GHz equipment, you might be more interested in the Neato D7.
LaserSmart™ Technology – Both smart vacuums do a good job of navigating around your home, and the main way that they find their bearings is through LaserSmart technology.
Using lasers, your D5 or Botvac Connected will make a map of your entire home to create the most efficient plan of action for your robot to follow. The layout also allows your vacuum to clean in straight lines rather than a random pattern like you’d see with less-premium models.
Unlike some other smart vacuum brands that rely on cameras for navigation, these models don’t need light in order to clean, meaning you can set your vacuum to clean in the middle of the night if you so choose.
Ultra Performance Filter – Having optimal vacuuming capabilities is probably most people’s first consideration when shopping for a vacuum, but all that agitation and suction can kick up dust and debris into the air, making it hell for those with allergies. The ultra-Performance filter on the D5 and Connected is one of the most advanced on the market, and is capable of capturing twice the small particles of competitors down to 0.3 microns in size.
For those without any sensitivity, you might not notice a huge difference between an ultra-performance filter and a more standard design. However, for those with severe allergies, the strong filtering can make all the difference.
D-shape design – Like the rest of the Neato line, these vacuums have a unique D-shape design. Most of the company’s competitors have more traditional round shapes, but the D-design allows for Neato vacuums to easily clean hard-too-reach areas like corners and along walls.
Both models are pretty similar in the body shape, weight, and height. At 3.9” tall you shouldn’t run into any issues with your vacuum struggling to pass under furniture.
Surface Type – These Neato vacuums will do a great job at cleaning in any household, whether your floors are tile, hardwood, carpet, or any combination of materials. The robots are powerful enough to trap all dirt and debris on any surface, and the two large wheels allow for a seamless transition over various floor types and obstacles like cords alike.
Smart Control – The Neato vacuum product family as a whole is one of the best options for those who are looking to integrate their robot cleaner with the rest of their Connected home, and the D5 and Botvac Connected are no exception.
Like many smart vacuums, these models support voice control via Amazon Alexa and Google Home. However, the smart home functionality doesn’t stop there! These Neato vacuums also integrate with Apple Watch, Neato Chatbot for Facebook, and IFTTT.
The IFTTT in particular is especially useful, since it opens up a world of possibilities due to its conditional trigger system. Your smart vacuum’s intelligence will extend far beyond simple voice control, integrating well with pretty much any IFTTT compatible smart product.
Recharge & Resume – If your Neato vacuum’s batteries start to get low during cleaning, it is smart enough to head back to its base on its own for a charge.
However, what sets the D5 and Botvac Connected apart from many vacuums on the market is their ability to resume cleaning as soon as they’ve topped themselves back off. This means that you should see a thorough clean each and every time — even if your floor plan is too large for the vacuum to cover on a single charge.
Cleaning Summary with a Coverage Map – Outside of offering control over scheduling and various other settings, the Neato app also provides access to a cleaning summary and coverage map. This screen showcases cleaning history and statistics, and also gives you an easy way to see where your vacuum as cleaner, as well as where it has yet to cover. It’s also a great way to figure out where obstacles might be that block your Neato from cleaning, since you’ll be able to easily see untouched spots through the map.
Boundary Markers – last but not least, boundary markers are included with both models that allow you to block of specific areas that you’d like your Neato vacuum to avoid. However, you might not need them much longer due to the impending addition of Virtual No-go Areas that allows you to draw out a line on the screen that will help guide the path of your Botvac.
The Virtual No-go Area is one of the most elegant solutions we’ve seen to boundary marking from the industry thus far, and blows away even awesome solutions like the Roomba’s virtual Wall Barriers.
Neato Botvac Connected vs. D5 — Differences
Difference #1: Brush – The first big difference of the Neato Botvac Connected vs. D5 is their brush.
The D5 uses a combo brush that offers superior pickup of pet hair on all different types of flooring. It’s also pretty quiet during operation, and is one of the easiest brushes on the market to remove and maintain. It’s a pretty standard brush mechanism, but it is expertly crafted and does a great job of picking up dust and debris.
The Neato Connected takes things one step further with a spiral blade brush in addition to the combo brush. The blades allow the vacuum to remove dirt and debris and give your carpets that signature “just vacuumed” look like you’d see with a traditional vacuum.
The Connected has that extra brush which does give it an advantage over the Neato D5.
Difference #2: Run Time – Another area in which the Neato Connected has an advantage is in run time. It has the ability to run for up to 120 minutes on a single charge, while the Neato D5 can only run for 90.
One thing to keep in mind, however, is that the disparity pretty much becomes a non-issue when you consider that both models feature a recharge and resume functionality. The Connected might finish cleaning faster due to the fact that it has to head back to the base left often, but both vacuums will get your whole home clean during each scheduled vacuuming.
Difference #3: ECO & TURBO Mode – The Neato Connected has two modes: ECO and TURBO. ECO mode is quieter and cleans for a longer period of time, while TURBO offers a power powerful clean with stronger suction for picking up the most stubborn debris.
Both modes do a great job of keeping your floors vacuumed, however, the TURBO mode cleans faster and more powerfully with the trade off of significantly noisier operation.
The D5, unfortunately, does not support this feature.
Difference #4: LCD Control Panel Display – The primary way that you’ll control the vacuum is through the Neato app, but the Neato Connected makes manual control a breeze as well with a small LCD display on the top panel. Using this screen, you can easily set ECO and TURBO modes, start and pause cleaning, and more.
The lack of a screen on the D5 is certainly a little inconvenient, but you shouldn’t find that it significantly impedes your usage in day-to-day operations considering you have the Neato app and voice control through Amazon Alexa and Google Home on hand.
Difference #5: Find Me – One area in which the Neato D5 does have an advantage is with the inclusion of the Find Me feature. In normal operation, your Botvac should find its way back to its base with no issues. However, there are bound to be times where your robot gets lost or stuck even with its superior navigation systems.
With the Neato D5, locating your vacuum is as simple as pressing a button in the app and following the sound of the beeps. With the Connected, you’ll be left hunting for a dead vacuum, which is definitely pretty inconvenient.
Difference #6: Virtual No-go Areas via App & Multiple Floor Plans – Since the D5 is a newer model, It’s still continually receiving updates with new features that were previously only in the cutting-edge devices. Neato as a brand is pretty unique in that they continue to expand the functionality of older vacuums even after releasing updated models, which really ensures you’ll get the best bang for your buck when you buy within the product family.
One example of this continuing support is the addition of Virtual No-go areas and Multiple Floor Plans coming in Fall 2018. The virtual no-go areas allow you to easily trace out areas where you’d like to block access, and support for more than one floor plan should make it easy to seamlessly transition your Neato from one floor to another.
The Neato Connected is unfortunately never going to receive these updates, which will give the D5 a significant advantage later this season.
Difference #7: Quick Charging – Another feature coming to the D5 in Fall 2018 is Quick Boost. This quick charging feature will allow your vacuum to only charge itself just to the level it needs in order to finish its current cleaning job.
The Neato Connected does have a longer battery life, and up until now it would make sense that it gets the job done faster. However, when you consider that the Neato Connected will only resume cleaning when it’s fully charged while the Neato D5 can start cleaning again much more quickly, you may actually see a faster clean with the latter despite the smaller battery.
Difference #8: Weight – Lastly, there is a bit of a difference in weight between the two models. At 7.5 pounds, the Neato D5 is slightly lighter than the 9 pound Neato Connected.
For most people, this difference will likely be a non-issue. For those who might have trouble picking up the vacuum to empty the bin, replace parts, or even just to transfer it from one floor to the next, however, that 1.5 pounds could potentially be worth keeping in mind.
Neato Botvac Connected vs. D5 — Comparison Chart
|Neato Connected||Neato D5|
|Virtual No-go Areas via App||No||Coming via app update Fall 2018|
|Floor Plans||No||Coming via app update Fall 2018|
|Battery||Lithium Ion||Lithium Ion|
|Quick Charging||No||Coming via app update Fall 2018|
|Manual Control via LCD Display||Yes||No|
|Remote Control||via App||via App|
|Apple Watch Support||Yes||Yes|
|Voice Control||Alexa, Google Assistant||Alexa, Google Assistant|
|Recharge & Resume||Yes||Yes|
|Virtual Walls||Boundary Markers (2M)||Boundary Markers (2M)|
|Main Brush||Combo Brush|
Spiral Blade Brush
|Filter||Ultra Performance||Ultra Performance|
|Run Time||Up to 120 min||Up to 90 min|
|Height||3.9 in||3.9 in|
|Weight||9 lbs||7.5 lbs|
|Dustbin Capacity||0.7 liters||0.7 liters|
|Full Dustbin Indicator||Yes||Yes|
Neato Botvac Connected vs. D5 — Accessories
The accessories for the Botvac Connected and D5 are pretty much focused around maintenance. Daily cleaning will start to take their toll on your vacuum over time, and having the appropriate parts on hand to swap out equipment when needed will save you a headache in the future.
Both vacuums pull from the same line of accessories. The comprehensive replacement parts package includes filters and side brushes, which should give you everything you need for the foreseeable future. Getting an extra Ultra-Performance filter or two is also smart, as the filters are the part that needs replacement most frequently.
A brush cleaning tool comb is a godsend when it comes to pulling clumps of pet hair out of the vacuum, as you’re bound to deal with clogs from time to time due to the nature of the brush design. Magnetic Boundary Markets Strips are also important, but more so for blocking off areas for the Connected model since the D5 will be receiving the virtual no-go zones shortly.
Neato Botvac Connected vs. D5 — Our Thoughts
There are advantages and drawbacks to both models when comparing the Neato Botvac D5 Connected vs. Connected. However, we do think the Neato D5 is the superior buy for one main reason: continued updates.
Since Neato regularly introduces new features to some of their older models, the D5 is still seeing the introduction of new functionalities like multiple floor plans and virtual no-zoo areas. The Connected, on the other hand, is quite old at this point and is unlikely to see more features introduced moving forward.
While the Botvac Connected does have advantages like a longer run time, an extra brush, and an LCD control panel, that doesn’t really make up for the lack of new features. The upcoming ability of the D5 to seamlessly operate on multiple levels and easily mark off prohibited areas do give it a significant advantage.
In this comparison, it’s not exactly a cut and dry decision, as they both have something great to bring to the table. With such a close battle, however, we recommend going with the newer model so you can continue to take advantage of new features into the future.
Last update on 2020-07-11 at 12:59 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API