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iRobot and Canadian Tire Introduce Canada to New Way of Cleaning with Roomba Red Robotic Floorvacs

BURLINGTON, <?XML:NAMESPACE PREFIX = ST1 /?>Mass., Oct. 4, 2004 - iRobot, creator of Roomba(R), the first affordable robotic vacuum, announced today that its new Roomba Red robotic floorvac is now available at select Canadian Tire stores throughout Canada. Shaped like a Frisbee and low enough to get under most beds and bureaus without help, Roomba Red gives people the ability to clean their homes more effectively and efficiently than ever before. Roomba Red is part of the new Roomba Discovery line of breakthrough robotic vacuum cleaners that offer enhanced dirt detection systems, a self-charging Home Base(TM), longer battery run time and faster charging. 

Canadian Tire and its Associate Dealers together form one of Canada's best-known and most-shopped retailers, with 455 stores from coast-to-coast. Roomba Red is available in the vacuum section of select Canadian Tire retail outlets, and soon from iRobot's Web site, www.irobot.com. Offered for the first time at a Canadian retailer, Roomba Red sells for approximately $249 (Canadian). 

"iRobot has been eager to introduce Roomba to Canadian consumers, and we are particularly thrilled to team with Canadian Tire, one of Canada's most respected retailers," said Colin Angle, chief executive officer of iRobot. "Roomba Red takes vacuuming to a new level and gives people a smarter way to have a cleaner home. Canada is a crucial market for us and we look forward to introducing future products to Canadian consumers as we continue to develop new robotic innovations."

Roomba's slim profile allows it to scurry under furniture to areas that traditional vacuums cannot reach. Two counter-rotating cleaning brushes sweep away larger particles, while an efficient vacuum sucks up smaller particles. Additionally, Roomba uses a spinning side brush to push dirt from edges into the path of the main cleaning head. This allows Roomba to clean powerfully and thoroughly using less power than full-sized vacuums. Standard features include a cliff-avoidance detector that prevents Roomba from falling down stairs and a non-marring bumper that protects walls and furniture from scuffing.

The original award-winning Roomba robotic floorvac, introduced in 2002, is the world's first practical home robot. Over a half-million Roombas have been sold to date. Now, the new Roomba Discovery line offers an even smarter way to a cleaner home. The following intelligent advances are built into the Roomba Discovery line to give users more convenience than ever:

  • Dirt Detect(TM) system: special sensors alert Roomba to dirt so it spends more time cleaning dirty areas, detecting particles as fine as ground pepper
  • Home Base(TM) self-charging station that Roomba returns to when finished cleaning
  • Faster charging: Roomba Red charges in under seven hours
  • Longer battery run time: Roomba can now clean for up to 120 minutes
  • One button "Clean" mode: Roomba figures out the room size and how much time it needs to clean
  • Bigger dust bin that holds three times more dirt
  • More powerful vacuum for better cleaning on deeper pile carpet
  • Smart sensors know when Roomba is stuck, and help it escape
  • Design modifications allow Roomba to transition more smoothly from hardwood floor to rug
  • Quieter operation

Roomba Red works with an optional self-charging Home Base unit and remote control. It is sold with one Virtual Wall(TM) unit that creates a barrier to keep Roomba out of areas that users wish it to avoid.

About Canadian Tire Corp.

Canadian Tire Corporation, Limited (TSX: CTR.a, CTR) operates more than 1,100 stores, gas bars and car washes in an inter-related network of businesses engaged in retail, financial services and petroleum. More than 45,000 Canadians work across the Canadian Tire organization from coast-to-coast. Canadian Tire Retail and its Associate Dealers together form one of Canada's best-known and most-shopped retailers with 455 stores in communities nationwide. Canadian Tire stores offer a unique mix of products and services through the leadership of three specialty stores under one roof - Automotive, Sports and Leisure, and Home Products. Canadian Tire also offers shopping and home delivery through www.canadiantire.ca and by phone order at 1-866-746-7287.

About iRobot Corp.
iRobot has a long commitment to building robotic products that make living safer and easier for people in many walks of life. Over the past 14 years, iRobot has developed and built innovative products for the government, law enforcement, industrial cleaning and toy industries, as well as the consumer marketplace.  In 2003, co-founders
Helen Greiner and Colin Angle were named Ernst & Young regional Entrepreneurs of the Year for their innovative work in technology. For additional information about iRobot, visit www.irobot.com.