The creator of the Roomba Vacuum, iRobot Corp., has filed five infringement cases at the US District Court of Massachusetts. The patent suits are targeting some of the nation’s most recognizable vacuum cleaner brands.

Several patents were cited by iRobot, including navigation systems, motors, and brushes used to collect dust. The argument is that other high-end manufacturers are infringing on some or all of these patents with their products.

As one example, IRobot has accused the century-old mainstay Hoover Inc. of violating its intellectual property rights by marketing similar, circle-shaped household robo-cleaners.

IRobot made similar claims in suits against Black & Decker and Bissell Homecare, as well as the Canadian company Bobsweep Inc. and a Chinese company doing business as iLife. The claims also name Chinese manufacturing and importing partners for the companies. [NB none of the companies were available for comment at the time of publishing, as some have not even heard of the allegations yet.]

The products that iRobot claims infringe on its patents all appear to have entered the market between 2015 and 2017. iRobot said in a statement that “the filing of this litigation signals our commitment to protecting our investments. IRobot will not stand by while others offer products that infringe on our intellectual property.”

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