Robot vacuum cleaner brand Roomba will not be acquired by Amazon. It is withdrawing because major government agencies indicate that they do not like it and want to investigate. While that is undoubtedly a downer for Amazon, it is also good news for people with a Roomba, or people who want a Roomba. Not necessarily for the people at Roomba themselves.
The potential takeover by Amazon has turned out to be a drama. As soon as Amazon indicated that it would not take over the robot vacuum cleaner maker due to, among other things, the antitrust cases of the EU and the Federal Trade Commission, iRobot decided to dismiss 31 percent (!) of its staff. So it is certainly not all positive. However, there are positive aspects to the product not being acquired by Amazon.
It continues to exist
We now see it happening at Google: Fitbit is integrated with the Pixel and Nest departments. Many people don’t think Fitbit will continue to exist as a separate company for long, or as a separate brand at all. It happens more often that companies are integrated into other companies after acquisitions. Usually not immediately, but after a while. At least Roomba will continue to exist, as long as it is not taken over by someone else, of course.
It continues to keep good ideas to itself
It is not surprising that iRobot was almost taken over. In general, you often buy a company because you would like to apply its knowledge and skills to your own products. Roomba now remains self-contained and can therefore continue to put its knowledge and skills into its own devices, making innovation unique and only for Roomba.
It cannot be copied indiscriminately
It’s a bit of an extension of what we just stated, but because iRobot Roomba is only made by Roomba people and secrets are not shared with other companies, it is not possible to bring a copy to the market before Roomba is released. . Otherwise, Amazon would have had access to that information and could have quickly created its own variant. This way, Roomba retains its originality a bit more and therefore continues to sell well, instead of someone else running away with those good options.
It has been in the news a lot
The potential acquisition has probably given iRobot a boost in terms of Roomba brand awareness and that is a good sign. The fact that a powerful company like Amazon wants to buy you is of course a compliment, but when a lot is written about it, many people see that iRobot name and think: ‘shouldn’t we have that too?’ Things were not going very well for iRobot, but the many communications about the takeover probably helped to put the name back on the map.
Amazon doesn’t get its way for once
It is also positive for consumers that Amazon does not get its way for once, and above all: that Amazon’s tentacles reach a little less deeply into your household. Because while people, for example, were afraid during the Fitbit takeover by Google that Google would suddenly know a lot about them, especially if you combine the data, that is of course also the case with Amazon. It already has Alexa, which is a smart home assistant, but with a robot (vacuum cleaner) there would be even more Amazon in the house.
Of course it is a shame that the company cannot make use of Amazon’s billions, and that so many people have to leave the company is extremely sad, but at the end of the day it is not all doom and gloom for Roomba.