When ILIFE was introduced to the market in the mid-2010s, it became a household name, because it was cheap and still cleaned pretty darn well.
However, most of ILIFE’s early generation products were random navigating robots that don’t have smart navigation.
Fast-forward to the 2020s, and ILIFE is upgrading its product offering with its first LIDAR-based robot vacuum – the A10.
How good is the A10? How does it compare with the likes of Roborock and Roomba? We’ll find out more in this review.
How Good is ILIFE’s First LIDAR Based Robot?
ILIFE A10 Review
ILIFE just released their first robot vacuum with laser navigation, the A10. There are two variants – the A10 and A10S. Both options are similar in terms of features, but one difference is the A10S includes a vibrating electronic water tank for cleaning dried stains. A10’s laser sensor unlocks advanced features like selective room cleaning, no-go zones, and invisible wall. However, some quirks hold it back, somewhat, like the lack of a second (or third) pass.
- Smart and efficient navigation
- All-rubber brush resists hair tangles well
- Large capacity dust container (600 ml)
- Easy to empty
- Excellent at navigating around tight spaces
- Lacks thoroughness (only one pass)
- Edge cleaning is lacking in its default cleaning cycle
- Poor deep cleaning performance
Introduction to the ILIFE A10
As I’ve said, the A10 is ILIFE’s first robot with laser navigation. This model is different from other A-series robots like the A8 and A9 that use a top-mounted camera.
Using LIDAR and SLAM unlocks several features you won’t see in ILIFE’s other models (like the A8 and A9), such as invisible wall, no-go zones, and selective room cleaning.
It’s a step in the right direction for ILIFE as they try to catch up with Roborock’s popularity.
The A10 comes in a stylish glossy gray finish with some black accents around it. It has a large protruding cover that houses the LIDAR sensor near the front with a single button.
Like with most ILIFE A-series variants, it has a rear-mounted dustbin. I believe the A10 has a similar design as models like the A80 and A9 with a cellular dustbin (more below).
Underneath, it has twin side brushes flanking the primary brush roll. One unique feature is the option to adjust brush speed through the app between 0 and 100.
I keep it at the lowest setting to minimize dirt scattering.
These side brushes are color-coded and clip into place, so there’s no need for a screwdriver to secure them in place.
Out of the box, you’ll get two main brushes – a combo brush plus an all-rubber variety.
I tested both extensively, and there isn’t much of a difference with surface debris pick up. But the all-rubber is better at resisting hair tangles, while the combo brush is better for cleaning embedded dirt.
Dustbin size and design
ILIFE describes the A10 as having a “cellular dustbin” with conical cylinders preventing the filter from getting prematurely soiled and clogged.
This feature works similarly to a Dyson. I’ve tested it extensively, and it seems to do an excellent job at keeping debris away from the filter, thus extending the service life.
The filter it uses is HEPA, but unlike Roborock, it isn’t washable, and you can see a huge red-letter warning above the container.
It has a decent capacity of 600 ml, according to the AliExpress website, so the volume is above-average.
How does the ILIFE A10 navigate?
One of the first things I tested with the A10 is navigation. I was expecting a similar pattern as the Roborock S5 Max, but that wasn’t the case.
Instead, it immediately cleans the middle portions in straight lines. It traverses to the edges, which makes up for the lack of edge cleaning in its default cycle.
Why ILIFE does not have an edge cleaning cycle is a mystery to me. But you’ll get a remote to access this feature.
However, I hope ILIFE tweaks their algorithm and add this to future updates as other brands like Neato, Roomba, and Roborock have it.
Another aspect I noticed is the one-pass-only run, plus it doesn’t have the option to increase passes, which is another improvement area for ILIFE.
I tested coverage by scattering quaker oats all over the room, and the A10 was decent, but it left bits and pieces.
Aside from the lack of a second and third pass, the A10 makes wide turns, so it missed spots.
It shouldn’t be an issue if it had a wider brush, but the sub-6 inch wide beater bar hinders its potential.
Pick up isn’t an issue here as the brush got whatever debris in its way. So tightening up the turns and adding more passes should make the A10 a better performing robot.
The ILIFE A10 is compatible with the ILIFE Home app. You can download this by scanning the QR codes (for IOS or Android) underneath the robot.
This app is quite responsive and feature-rich. A router is a must-have to pair the app and robot.
Follow the steps highlighted on the app when adding a new robot. The process is simple, and if you follow the steps, it will take less than 10 minutes.
One of my favorite features is the accessibility to no-go zones and invisible wall. These two are must-haves for any smart robot vacuum and blocks the robot from going into off-limit areas. Most homes will have these areas, and users will benefit from this.
ILIFE’s carpet boost feature is different from Roomba and Roborock, where it automatically increases suction when it detects carpet.
You’ll have to assign “carpet zones” on the map to let the robot know when to increase suction.
Yes, it’s an extra step, but a nice feature to have since users have a level of control.
Another feature I like is the option to save multiple maps. ILIFE doesn’t specify how many it can save on their website, but it’s at least four because I’ve saved three, and the add new map button is still enabled.
Within these maps, users can set as many invisible walls and no-go zones as needed, so this robot is usable inside multi-level homes.
Adjust side brush speed
One feature I’ve not seen in other brands I’ve tested is the option to adjust side brush speed. ILIFE provides this option between 0 and 100.
For me, the best setting would be zero or the slowest speed to minimize debris scattering as it automatically increases suction when it detects an edge or obstacle.
Like spot cleaning function, the to-go zone instructs the robot to clean a specific area through the app.
It’s more precise, as you can set a rectangular or square zone anywhere on the map.
Custom room naming
After saving a map, users can divide it and assign custom names. I prefer using custom names because it provides more control.
You can use this in conjunction with scheduling to clean rooms at the best times based on your schedule. So users will have several options on how to maximize it for their needs.
However, I’m not sure if this feature is usable with Alexa.
Selective room cleaning
LIDAR enables the A10 to have selective room cleaning or choosing areas to clean with a few taps on the map.
Another quirk is the ability to set the order in which these rooms are cleaned.
However, users will have to assign these areas on the map before this feature is unlocked.
The A10 has unlimited scheduling, so you can set as many runs as needed.
This feature makes up for the lack of passes in the default cleaning cycle.
This tab provides users a heads up when to replace components like the filter, side brush, and primary brush. It’s a time-based system, so you’ll have to give a visual check on occasion to check how each part is holding up.
Unlike other brands that have fixed settings, ILIFE provides a range between 0 and 100 to adjust suction.
I tested how usable suction is at the lowest setting, and it was decent, at least for hard surfaces, but not enough on carpet.
How much power does the ILIFE A10 have?
One tool I use to gauge power is an anemometer that measures airflow. Since the A10 doesn’t have any fixed power settings, I measured it at three levels – 1%, 50%, and 100%, and here are the results.
- Lowest (0%): 9 CFM
- Middle (50%): 11.68 CFM
- Max (100%): 14.20 CFM
Not world-beating airflow, but decent nonetheless. However, compared to other robot vacuums at a similar price range (iRobot, Roomba, Neato), it’s a bit lacking.
I put the ILIFE A10 through a series of tests on debris like sand, quinoa, pet litter, hair, quaker oats, and much more to see how well it picks up.
- Overall: 82.42%
- Hard floor: 98.45%
- Carpet (surface): 91.27
- Deep cleaning: 45.17%
- Sand on hard floor: 94.8%
The A10’s overall scores were dragged down by the low results in the deep cleaning test. This tells me it’s a bit lacking with agitation on thicker pile carpet.
It did best on hard surfaces with a 98.45% score, which could have been higher with tighter navigation.
Hard floor results
- Quaker oats: 98.8%
- Coffee: 100%
- Quinoa: 97.4%
- Pet litter: 97.6%
This robot performed its best on hard floors with a 98.45% score. Despite having two side brushes, it didn’t scatter too much dirt as I had feared, which is a good sign.
Unfortunately, the wide turns and the lack of passes hurt its cleaning potential.
Sand on hard floor test
The litmus test for any robot vacuum on hard surfaces is sand. For the test, I use 50 grams to see how much the A10 picks up and how clean the passes are.
It picked up an average of 94.8%, which is on the lower end than Roborock and Roomba that gobbled up close to 100%.
The issue isn’t the lack of agitation, but the extremely wide turns, leaving behind missed spots.
Another issue is the side brush scattering portions of it. When I did this test, I left the side brush speed at 10%, which could be a factor.
Also, the all-rubber brush was better than the combo brush, picking up an average of 97.6% versus the combo brush’s 92% score.
Hair wrap test
Next, we’ll look at how well the A10 resists tangles where I used one gram of five and seven-inch human hair strands.
I did the test on both the combo and all-rubber brush.
Results of the all-rubber brush
- 5-inch strands: 0.8 grams (80%) inside the bin, 0.2 grams (20%) on the brush
- 7-inch strands: 0.72 grams (72%) inside the bin, 0.28 grams (28%) on the brush
Results of the combo brush
- 5-inch strands: 0.2 grams (20%) inside the bin, 0.8 grams (80%) on the brush
- 7-inch strands: 0.5 grams (50%) inside the bin, 0.5 grams (50%) on the brush
It’s a no-brainer, the all-rubber brush was better at resisting tangles and has the same hair resisting properties as Roomba’s rubber extractors.
Most of the hair strands are wrapped on the axles, which is easier to clean, removing hair wrapped on the bristles.
Fortunately, ILIFE makes it easier to clean the axles thanks to the removable cap.
Another strength of the A10 is how well it cleans edges. I wasn’t expecting this since it has a narrow brush, and the airflow isn’t high, but nonetheless, it did the job.
Here’s a before and after photo.
The A10 picked up most of the coffee grounds on this corner of the room. Even debris under the quarter-inch crevice, so it’s a decent edge cleaning robot.
The A10 had lower overall scores on carpet. Part of it is the lack of airflow and agitation. Another reason is the lack of passes and wide turns.
Low pile results
- Quaker oats: 98.4%
- Coffee: 95.2%
- Quinoa: 95%
- Pet litter: 98.2%
The A10’s score on low pile carpet was decent – in the high 90s. Agitation wasn’t an issue on this surface as it made clean passes.
However, the lack of passes and extra-wide turns hurt it, but the quantiy of debris it picked up was impressive despite these limitations.
Mid pile results
- Quaker oats: 85.8%
- Coffee: 85.2%
- Quinoa: 92.8%
- Pet litter: 79.6%
This robot did the worst on mid pile carpet, only scoring above 90% with quinoa. The lack of agitation, average airflow, and the lack of passes hurt it on thicker pile carpets.
I rubbed 100 grams of sand on mid pile carpet to see how much it picks up for this experiment.
Unfortunately, the A10 also didn’t do well in the deep cleaning test, picking up 45.17%. It did worst with the all-rubber brush (42.4%) than the combo brush (47.95%).
Again, the average airflow, lack of agitation, and passes hurt it in this area.
I wouldn’t recommend this for cleaning embedded dirt on carpet.
How noisy is the ILIFE A10?
To measure noise, I used a sound meter and tested it in the lowest (1%), middle (50%), and highest (100%) power settings.
- Lowest (1%): 59.2 dB
- Middle (50%): 64.2 dB
- Max (100%): 8 dB
In the lowest setting, the A10 is quite docile, recording less than 60 decibels, and it’s quiet enough to use inside an apartment complex in the evening.
However, that won’t be the case in the max setting at it teethers close to 70 decibels – 68.6 to be exact.
How long will the ILIFE A10 run?
ILIFE says the A10 will run for up to 100 minutes in the lowest setting. But it will be close to the 60 minutes mark in the highest setting.
This robot has recharge and resume, so it mitigates the lack of run time at max as it will resume cleaning if it doesn’t finish the task.
What comes in the box?
- ILIFE A10 robot vacuum
- Two sets of side brushes
- One extra all-rubber brush roll
- Remote control (2 AAA batteries included)
- Charging station plus base plate
- Manual and quick start guide
Availability of parts
ILIFE isn’t a newcomer, so purchasing parts like filters or side brushes won’t be an issue. You can source these items from Amazon or AliExpress.
I’ve also seen replacement batteries sold on Amazon for older variants like the A4S, A6, and V7.
However, the ILIFE A10 is only available in AliExpress, but not on Amazon, so only time will tell if ILIFE will add it to Amazon’s shelves.
Robot vacuums will need proper upkeep to function their best. The A10 is no exception, and I’ll summarize the list of components that you’ll need to check, clean, or replace.
- Primary brush roll: It’s easily the most abused part of a robot vacuum. Check it once a week and remove any hair or debris sticking on it. Use the all-rubber brush if you’re dealing with a lot of pet or human hair on hard surfaces as it is easier to clean.
- Side brush: Check for hair wrapping around the base. Since these components clip on the bottom, there’s no need for a screwdriver to attach or remove them.
- Dustbin: Empty the dustbin after every run to prevent spillovers and dust mites from breeding.
- Filter: The A10 utilizes a non-washable HEPA filter. Fortunately, the conical cylinders do an excellent job keeping it from getting clogged for extended periods even after the extreme cleaning tests I did.
- Side and caster wheels: Wipe these components with a clean microfiber towel to prevent debris buildup.
- Cliff sensors: The A10 has three sets underneath. Use a clean towel to wipe to prevent it from firing wrong signals.
- Laser sensor: Avoid poking the LIDAR with a blunt object as it could misalign or damage it. I use a handheld vacuum (Dyson V8 or Roborock H6) with a brush attachment to clean any debris.
|Battery||2600 mAh Li-ion|
|Run time||Up to 100 mins.|
|Water Tank Capacity||N/A|
|Dirt Capacity (dry)||600 ml.|
|Recharge and Resume||Yes|
Where can I buy the ILIFE A10?
You can buy this robot from AliExpress. Check the link below for the latest pricing information.
Disclaimer: I will earn a commission if you purchase through the link above, but at no extra cost to you, so it’s a win-win for us!
Does the ILIFE A10 provide excellent value?
I expected a lot from the ILIFE A10 since I know the manufacturer to produce high-quality robot vacuums at a reasonable cost.
However, the A10 was a bit underwhelming because of the lack of several critical features. It only goes around once and doesn’t have a dedicated edge cleaning run built into its default cycle.
You could use the remote to toggle an edge-cleaning only cycle, but I prefer it built into the run for convenience sake.
Turns are too wide, and with the narrow brush, expect it to miss some spots.
Cleaning dynamics are good for surface debris but don’t expect it to deep clean carpet as it lacks agitation and sheer airflow.
The app is quite good, and I like that it can save multiple map levels. But it doesn’t have the option to adjust the number of passes, so it lags with thoroughness.
Nonetheless, the current price is quite attractive, if you add the discount. If you don’t mind the lack of thoroughness, it’s a cheaper option than a Roborock S5 Max or a Neato D6.
The Verdict: Decent But Still Lags Behind Neato and Roborock
ILIFE has a decent product in the A10, but it lags behind Neato and Roborock, lacking two essential features to challenge the other two brands.
First is the lack of thoroughness. It only goes around once by default, and the lack of an edge-cleaning run hampers its coverage. The extra-wide turns coupled with the narrow brush will miss some spots.
These are software related issue I believe ILIFE will sort out with some algorithmic tweaks.
For it to compete with more popular brands, it has to improve upon these drawbacks.
How Good is ILIFE's First LIDAR-based Robot?
Navigation - 90%
Deep Cleaning - 45.17%
Surface Cleaning - 94.84%
Quality - 95%
Design - 93%
Value - 91%
I was expecting more from ILIFE with the A10, but this model still lags behind flagship brands like Neato, iRobot, and Roborock with navigation. Cleaning dynamics are decent, especially on hard surfaces where it makes clean passes. However, the lack of passes, edge cleaning, and extra-wide turns, hamper its potential. These are all easily correctable with a few tweaks in the app.