Hobot Legee-688 2-in-1 robot vacuum review: D shape and no app connectivity

Hobot Legee-688 two-in-one robot vacuum review novel shape–but no app connectivity zdnet
  • Editors' rating
    6.8 Good

Pros

  • Innovative shape for corner cleaning
  • Excellent mopping results

Cons

  • Robot does not connect to app
  • No user guide provided
  • Could cause water damage to porous floors

The Hobot Legee 688 is a two-in-one robot vacuum that has a vibrating mopping floor pad and an unusual form factor. Its front bumper is flat with two corners. It looks like the letter "D" from above.

Hobot says the "D" shape is to allow the robot to sweep into corners that usually are missed with a regular round robot. And it does very effectively indeed.

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The Legee 688 is sold as a four-function robot. It will vacuum, wipe, spray the floors with cleaning solution, and mop. Unlike other two-in-one robot vacuums, the mopping pad oscillates backward and forward 600 times per minute to deliver a scrubbing action whilst the single side brush sweeps dust into its 500ml dust bin.

Its 320ml tank is non-removable. You need to fill it up using the handy bottle and nozzle provided. Hobot reckons that the tank will clean up to 150m2 from one tank.

To navigate around the room, the Legee 688 uses three lasers positioned in the side of the robot to calculate distance from objects.

Instead of navigation wheels, the Legee uses caterpillar tracks to prevent it from slipping when it encounters wet floors. It makes the movement jerkier than a wheeled robot, but it certainly does not slip.

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In use, the Legee 688 has a stop-start action which makes you think that you have used an incorrect setting. The 688 stops, sprays water on the floor and starts to vibrate again. It is quiet too at 62dB and is hardly noticeable in use.

The Legee 688 has a remote control and an app. The remote control has a kitchen setting. This setting sprays extra water onto the floor before mopping the area twice. If you have a large floor to cover, the Legee will clean and mop one section of the floor before moving to the next section.

Frustratingly, there was no user manual in the box, and although I asked Hobot's media team, the pdf version of the user manual was not sent to me in time for this review.

Fortunately, the images on the box gave an excellent indication of the 688's capabilities and how to use the robot. The 688 also has an app.

I tried three different phones, including my trusty Samsung which connects to everything but could not connect to the app -- regardless of whether I tried to connect using my .co.uk email address or my hotmail.com address.

Hobot Legee-688 two-in-one robot vacuum review novel shape–but no app connectivity zdnet

Eileen Brown

I tried for almost three hours -- when the Legee was fully charged. Although each phone could see the Legee 688 in my saved networks, and the Wi-Fi router I connected to was broadcasting at 2.4GHz, the app on each phone showed that the Hobot was out of range.

This happened even when it was lying on top of the robot when it was trying to connect. This is the 24th robot vacuum I have reviewed, and some of the apps across several different manufacturers just will not connect.

Others apps, like the Ecovacs Deebot range, or the Roborock models, have apps that connect like a dream. Even the 360 S9 and 360 S5 robots connected well after some tweaks to the app.

Perhaps the app is optimized only for iPhone connection -- not Android devices. I gave up and continued with the remote control unit.

The app, if I had been able to connect to it, would have offered seven pre-set cleaning modes including standard, strong, eco, kitchen, dry, pet, and polish.

The remote control modes include kitchen, dry, standard, and strong as well as auto, and edge cleaning. The Legee's 3,000mAh battery will deliver up to 90 minutes cleaning time before returning to its dock

I felt that the Legee 688 cleaned a dirty floor better than the Ecovacs Deebot T8 accessory I reviewed in September. It certainly removed fresh muddy paw prints on its first pass over the floor. It certainly seems to clean soiled floors far more thoroughly than previous models I have reviewed.

Another issue is the robot docking area. Other two-in-one robots have a plastic base for the robot to sit on when it is in the charging dock. The Legee 688 does not. This will be an issue if you have porous floors as the damp mop will stain the floors when it docks.

However, without an app, or a user guide my use of the Hobot Legee 688 was guided by guesswork and experience of reviewing a lot of other robot vacuums. You might not be so lucky.

It is such a shame that such a great mopper like the Hobot Legee 688 has been let down in this way. Hopefully, this will quickly be remedied so you can try this superb little robot mopper and sweeper.

The Hobot Legee 688 is a superb little robot mopper and sweeper with an innovative shape and a range of functions -- if only you could connect to the app.

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