Shark Robot Vacuums Compared: IQ R101AE vs. ION R85 vs. ION R75 vs. S87

By Natalie Red·Updated: Mar 10, 2020· 6 min read

SharkNinja is a fast-growing manufacturer and wholesaler of home appliances with headquarters in the US, UK, China, and Japan. Recently, they started producing robot vacuum cleaners, and some models, such as the SHARK ION R85 and Shark - ION R75 already become very popular in the US. Both devices received more than one thousand, mostly positive reviews from their customers. In September 2019, SharkNinja released its newest robot vacuum - the Shark IQ R101AE with a self-empty dock and camera-based navigation system. This robot vacuum supposed to be a competitor to the more expensive Roomba i7+ and Roomba s9+. In this article, we're going to compare all SharkNinja robot vacuums to help you decide which one will suit your needs.

All Shark robot vacuums: comparison chart

Specs / Features Shark Ion R75 (RV750) Shark ION R85 (RV850) Shark ION S87 (RV851WV) Shark IQ 100 Shark IQ R101AE
Navigation system Smart Sensor Navigation Smart Sensor Navigation 2.0 Smart Sensor Navigation 2.0 IQ NAV IQ NAV
Mapping - - - camera-based camera-based
Advanced Self-Cleaning Brushroll - - - yes yes
Wi-Fi & App support yes yes yes yes yes
Alexa & Google Home Support yes yes yes yes yes
Recharge & Resume no no no yes yes
Handheld vacuum included no no yes no no
Auto-Empty Bin no no no No (supports one) yes
Selected Room Cleaning / Scheduling By Room no no no yes yes
Battery Life (min) 60 60 60 75 75
Magnetic tape support (virtual walls) yes yes yes yes yes
Warranty (months) 12 12 12 12 12
Price ~$449.99 ~$349.98 ~$169.99 ~$349.99 $449.99

Runner Up

Shark ION R75 (RV750)

The best-selling robot in the family

Has a cleaning brushroll that handles pet hair. 

The Shark ION R75 is one of the oldest models in the line. The Shark ION R72 is the same unit, only the R75 is Wi-Fi capable. It does not have mapping, the navigation algorithm is pretty much random, the robot runs around until its battery dies. The Shark neither the most powerful robot vacuum in the industry nor the cheapest. It is not suitable for carpets and don’t get it the wrong way, it is able to vacuum and pick up things but its power is not enough to provide deeper cleaning.

The battery life is not the longest either, you’ll get about 60 minutes of cleaning on one charge which does not make the robot suitable for bigger homes. You might see the Shark ION R76 on Amazon. It is the same R75 model that only has a different color option. 

To conclude: the Shark ION R75 is suitable for small homes with almost no carpets. At the same time, it costs about the same as the Shark ION R85 that has stronger suction and a bigger dustbin so think twice before buying the R75. 

Best Budget

Shark ION R85 (RV850)

A decent budget robot vacuum

The cleaner can go over black carpets, has decent suction and is suitable for small homes with a mixed surface.

The Shark R85 has a self-cleaning brushroll which is a hybrid of bristles and rubber. Its pickup ability is great both on low and max power, whether it’s carpet or bare floor. 

The R85 has a really big dustbin that holds around 700 ml of debris which is bigger than most robots have. The robot has side sensors that look like a wall sensor in a Roborock which detects objects. It helps the robot to slow down once it recognizes an obstacle. The R85 gives you up to 88 minutes of runtime on low power and about 60 minutes on Max mode. 

Most of the robot vacuums are not able to clean black carpets. Cliff sensors think it is a «drop off» and stop the robot from «falling down». The R85 though does go on black carpet which you can see here.

The Shark R87 is a similar model. We did not find any differences between the two except for the price and design.

To conclude: the Shark ION R85 is a great robot vacuum for a small home covered with carpets. It can work on black carpets which is a rare thing in the robot vacuum world. With the large dustbin and a self-cleaning brushroll, the R85 is perfect for pet hair. If you don’t need mapping and want to get a budget yet powerful robot vacuum, have a look at the Shark ION R85.

A Good 2-in-1 Pick

Shark ION S87 (RV851WV)

2-in-1 robot vacuum and handheld

The robot vacuum does good job on floors and can be used on other surfaces thanks to the handheld unit. This is an ideal model for those who need a versatile device. 

If you are already familiar with the Shark ION R85, you might know the features it has and how it performs on carpet and bare flooring. The Shark ION S87 is the same R85 with a handheld included. 

The Shark ION S87 is a great choice for those who want a robot vacuum and a handheld to clean other surfaces from pet hair. Keep in mind, the handheld unit has weak suction which is enough to catch hair but would not provide deep cleaning. 

To conclude: for the price of ~$300 you get a decent robot vacuum with strong suction and a handheld unit which is a great deal. Suitable for homes with carpets and pet owners.

Our Pick

Shark IQ R101AE

Automatically empties itself

The robot has a self-emptying charging base that holds up to 30 robot bins. Equipped with an advanced self-cleaning cleaning brush that handles pet and human hair well. Has strong suction power and is ideal for average homes with carpets and pets. There is a built-in camera that helps to remember your home layout. 

The Shark IQ is the first robot vacuum in the family that remembers your floors which makes navigation more efficient, the bot does not just randomly bounce around, it knows where it should clean. It is also the most powerful model among other robot vacuums in the model line. It moves in back-and-forth straight lines and it is very good around chair legs. Navigation is efficient in terms of coverage.

The IQ has two modifications: the R100 which is called R101 (RV1001) on Amazon and R101AE (RV1001AE) that comes with a bagless auto-empty bin. 

Both models support room cleaning but to create a high-precious map, it needs to run up to 20 times until this option will be available. The robot has two unique side brushes that does not look alike to other side sweepers. They also move slow and don’t scatter debris on bare floor. 

Deep cleaning ability is also impressive. The Shark is one of the best robot vacuums in the industry that performs so good on carpets. 

The robot runs up to 60 minutes and resumes cleaning when the battery is out of charge. This does not make the Shark suitable for big homes but it would be good for small and average-sized places.

When the Shark dustbin gets full, it returns to the self-emptying charging dock on its own, empties itself and resumes cleaning. 

With the new advanced cleaning brush, the Shark handles pet hair with ease which you can see in the Vacuum Wars video where he used 1 gram of hair that ended up inside the dustbin with none on the brushroll.

To conclude: the Shark IQ is a decent budget robot vacuum coming with an auto-empty bin that costs around $550. It maps your home, you can order it to clean directly in the kitchen, the robot has strong suction and a tangle-free system. Not suitable for big homes though. If you are looking for a smart robot vacuum that will remember your place, get the Shark IQ R100. If you need an auto-empty bin, go with the Shark IQ R101AE

One of the main complains about the Shark robots — hard to find replacements. Some accessories are sold on Amazon but keep in mind, they are not from an official store. Also, for now, you will not find accessories for the latest Shark IQ models.

Comments ()

  1. Malcolm Smith
    #      +1
    I read that users are reporting very bad mapping capability with the Shark IQ. In some cases it may take over 40 cleaning cycles to properly map an individual's space whereas other robotic cleaners can do this in 1-3 cycles.
    1. Natalie Red
      #      0
      Yes, I have read that too. I believe a Shark might be a great product if they fix some issues with mapping and the app. Even though it performs great on carpets and handles pet hair well, it still has room for improvement.

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