Mashable: Amazon vacuums up Roomba maker iRobot, sparking immediate privacy concerns

August 5, 2022 Media

Would you give Amazon the layout to your home? Well, you soon may not have a choice if you’re a Roomba customer.

In a statement released on Friday, the e-commerce giant announced it was acquiring iRobot, the company best known as the maker of the popular vacuuming robot, Roomba. Amazon will purchase the consumer robot company in an all-cash deal for around $1.7 billion. The deal, however, still needs to be approved by regulators.

The Ring doorbell has already received its fair share of criticism over the years regarding Amazon’s use of Ring data. There are also antitrust concerns to take into account as Amazon continues to scoop up companies in the smart home space.

“It’s obvious that Amazon is seeking to acquire its way to dominance in the Smart Home market and add yet another intrusive way to surveil their customers,” said Sarah Miller, executive director of the American Economic Liberties Project. “Whether it’s Amazon rolling up Roomba and OneMedical, Facebook acquiring Within, or Google buying Mandiant, Congress needs to step in, shut down Big Tech’s acquisition spree, and fully resource the FTC in the interim.”