After having read through the Why Valetudo? page, you might also be wondering why you might not want to use Valetudo. To answer those questions, here’s a list of a few common reasons in an attempt to reduce the amount of some incredibly exhausting discussions.
The only person forcing you to use Valetudo is yourself. Using Valetudo is your own conscious decision.
If the things listed here are a deal-breaker to you then that’s fine. It’s completely reasonable to have different
opinions and thoughts on these things. You just won’t be happy with Valetudo then.
Thank you for not acting entitled.
First of all, it should be noted that Valetudo is a cloud replacement, meaning that it replaces the cloud.
As it stops all connectivity to the vendor cloud, the vendor app will also stop working.
It is not possible to use Valetudo and the vendor app simultaneously.
While there are some models of robots that can be easily reverted to stock firmware and cloud, for most of them, rooting and installing Valetudo is a pretty much permanent change.
If you’re looking for an experience similar to trying out a Linux Live CD, this is not it.
If you’re unsure whether or not you should install Valetudo, the answer is no, you should not install Valetudo.
Due to technical limitations, Valetudo does not support and will not support multiple maps. If you need multiple maps, Valetudo likely won’t be an option for you.
The topic has been evaluated many times already, with the result always being that it’s not technically feasible to properly, fully and reliably support multiple floors with the currently supported robot models and firmwares. (2022-12-28)
This isn’t something all too terrible though, as investing in a second robot greatly improves the usefulness of the unit. Having to manually carry the robot to another floor very much degrades the benefits of a fully automated vacuum robot. This “fire and forget” mode of operation was why you’ve considered to buy a vacuum robot in the first place, remember?
As far as financial reasons are concerned, 200€ should be more than enough to buy a factory new supported one even featuring LIDAR. If you’re happy with buying a used unit, at least here in germany, supported ones usually cost around 75-125€ (2022-12-28)
It is highly unlikely that you won’t be able to afford that, given that you can afford to live somewhere that features multiple floors.
However, most of the time, this is not a financial issue. Instead, usually this topic ends up being a rather fact-free emotional discussion as the aversion against multiple robots often stems from irrational dogmatism such as “Having more than one vacuum robot is insane!!111 I mean… Two robots! Who does that?!?!”.
Acting that way best-case is a learned behavior that helps people incapable of making proper decisions burn their money on nonsense. Worst-case it’s a learned behavior that was never questioned because things just were that way. Maybe even for generations?
At one point, the reason why it exists in the first place did vanish but the learned behavior just stayed the same. If you want to learn more about this pattern, googling “Grandma’s Ham” should give you some useful pointers.
Anyway, this is something that you can and should work on to grow as a person. If you just accept acting irrationally as being how you are, you’re making others carry the load that you yourself are responsible to carry.
Rationally, there’s a need (automated cloud-free cleaning on every floor) and there’s also a budget for that. Make your buying decisions based on that and that alone instead of some arbitrary made-up additional constraint.
We’ve been working a lot on making that buying decision easier for you by supporting more robots and enhancing the support for existing ones so that it should be possible for everyone to afford 1-n supported robots.
While Valetudo may be used by anyone, five years of user interactions have shown that it works better for some demographics than others.
One such demographic that seems to struggle hard with usage of Valetudo are people suffering from an exceptionally short attention span. As rooting a vacuum robot is an advanced topic, it will always require careful and mindful reading of information available to get an understanding of how things work and need to be done.
If you’re a person that prefers jump-cutted videotutorials featuring little understanding and lots of no-thinking-required copy-paste commands, you’ll likely be very unhappy with Valetudo.
It should be noted that, being a passion project, there is no incentive for Valetudo to cater to the needs of demographics that are usually only catered to to make money. If Valetudo was aimed at those demographics, there would be ads, data collection, licensing fees and many more undesirable things built in.
While this may sound incredibly dumb, it unfortunately needs saying nonetheless.
Only supported robots are supported. Unsupported robots are not supported.
If you have an unsupported robot, it is not supported. There is no support for it because it is not supported.
While there might be code in Valetudo that enables operation of a specific robot, it doesn’t mean that it is also supported. Support can only be provided for supported robots.
To receive support, you will need a supported robot. It is impossible to support an unsupported robot as - due to it being not supported - there simply is no knowledge available that could be utilized to provide support.
It is possible to use Valetudo on unsupported robots or in unsupported ways. Just note that there will be no support for these unsupported scenarios.
Valetudo does not feature any localization. Let me explain the reasoning behind this with a few examples.
First, consider this car radio in a car made for the german market:
In fact, the radio is engineered by Bosch in Hildesheim. Still, the button isn’t labeled
Now, let’s take a look at the Valetudo UI (Version 0.6.1):
Regarding overall complexity, it’s comparable to the buttons on the radio.
It’s even easier to understand, because there are a lot more icons.
Considering that people do in fact manage to use their car radios even if their english skills may be lacking, I’d say that accessibility isn’t a problem here.
As a matter of fact, Internationalization isn’t free. It always introduces more work, more complexity etc.
Of course accessibility is often worth the effort, however since we’ve already established that this factor isn’t relevant here, we can take a look at a non-exhaustive list of downsides of i18n:
Now, let us look at another real-world example of i18n.
This is a screenshot of Apple Shortcuts running on an iPhone set to the German locale. It is just a basic HTTP PUT with a JSON payload. For some reason however, “Header” as in “HTTP Header” was translated to “Überschrift” which means “Headline”. Even worse, “Request body” became “Haupttext anfordern” which translated back to english means “(to) request the main text”???
This is another example. Here we have the Integrated Development Environment Visual Studio 2017 made by Microsoft attempting to open a project file that was created in an older version of Visual Studio.
Instead of asking us if we want to change the target SDK of the project file - which is called solution in Visual Studio - it is showing us a dialog titled “Lösungsaktionen prüfen” which translates back to “check actions to solve something”. Then there’s a sub-header labelled “Projekte neu ausrichten” which translates to “realign projects” (plural).
The only way I was able to decipher what that dialog even means was by opening the same project on a different system with the locale being set to en-US.
In both examples, the actual meaning got lost in translation, which is a common issue. Even with german being a common language and understanding of the HTTP protocol being fairly common as well.
Preventing this is hard, because you will need someone who understands the project from a technical standpoint as well as speaks the language it should be translated to. This is also required even if the translation is done by someone else, because you still have to validate what they did.
As even huge corporations known for being user-friendly and also paired with insane budgets fail to do this all the time, I don’t think that it is actually a feasible task.
Open source cloud replacement for vacuum robots enabling local-only operation