This is a special focus on the design side of a mass-market product.
While the object is already well known and sold everywhere, the design content is not so diffused, and no design blog nor magazines have never published it (apart from a few italian magazines).
Hope this can be of your interest.
Already a winner in Spain and Germany for the Consumer Product of the Year, Virobi Vileda, a precious ally in the fight against dust, has won also the Red Dot Design Award, assigned by the internationally acclaimed german association of the same name, and the Good Design Award, one of the most prestigious design prizes in the world, assigned by the Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Design in cooperation with the European for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies.
Virobi is a solid example of “design for innovation”.
If the idea of the product came from a thorough market analysis, the project has been finalized since its inception by the R&D Department of Vileda in cooperation with the Casini Studio of Milan.
Virobi is not a “traditional” robotic vacuum cleaner: it’s a completely different and new product, designed for collecting dust and hairs. It is simple and easy to use, with few commands and a friendly aspect: a small, cheap appliance which could be used easily by anyone, even elderly people.
An ambitious goal, achieved thanks to the cooperation between Vileda and Casini Studio.
Victor Andriani, Head of International Marketing at Vileda, explains: “the real problem of the cleaning products and tools is that they generally are kept well hidden. You do not invite a guest while you leave the vacuum cleaner in the middle of the living room. This has been another element of the evolution concept for Virobi – we wanted a small, nice, friendly tool, that integrates itself well into the ambient, and which you could also show to your guests without problema.”
Luca Casini, the Virobi designer, adds: “The easy use of Virobi required complex components hidden inside a simple shell. This is why we had to precisely tailor the disposition of the components in the project phase, so to adapt them with precise proportions to its hemispherical form.”
The circular shape of Virobi permits it to reach every area of the floor – also, in contact with the walls and under the furniture without damaging the objects, and circling around obstacles, like the legs of the chairs. This happens because the Virobi’s rigid inner shell is complemented by a soft, outer crown of fabric, which completes the cleaning action thanks to a removable tissue held in place by a velcro. This soft outer crown helps the Virobi achieve its function, because it bends itself when it meets an obstacle, and helps to soften the bumps against objects.”
The use of Virobi is extremely simple, intuitive, and does not require any kind of complex programming. The power plug is easy to see and reach, with a plug that is easy to insert and remove. The appliance has only two power keys, which activate two different programs. It is equipped with a NiMH battery, which recharges itself by connecting the unit to the electrical power.