Oral-B’s iO Smart Toothbrush is a huge improvement in almost every way

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Oral-B’s iO smart toothbrush

It can be easy to scoff at the very concept of a “smart toothbrush” – what other device in our lives do we use on a daily basis that seems least in need of a connected upgrade? But Oral-B has been updating its line of Bluetooth and app-based intelligence electric toothbrushes for quite some time now, and its latest new smart toothbrush, the iO series, is actually a very smart and capable update that should help you. keep your teeth. better brushing and in healthier shape.

The basics

Oral-B’s IO is a fundamental rethinking of its electric toothbrush line in a way that none of its previous new models have been; the design, feature set, app, and more are all new. The new look, designed in partnership with Braun, is a huge improvement (more on that below), and there’s a color display that provides more information and visual feedback than on any previous Oral-B smart toothbrush. The induction charger is new too, with magnetic mount to hold it in place, and there’s a new companion app that provides a lot more guidance, with improvements that add up over time as the software gets to know it.

The iO Series includes different accessories and equipment depending on the version you get: Oral-B provided the Series 8, which includes the toothbrush, a charger, two replacement heads and a carrying case. The different series also include different features: the 7 Series is the most affordable, but lacks the Sensitive + brushing mode in the 8 Series, while the high-end Series 9 is the only one that includes a dedicated tongue brushing mode.

Using the toothbrush is easy. You can use one of the two buttons on the brush to cycle through the various modes, then press the other to turn it on and off. An integrated LED ring provides visual feedback on when you are applying the correct amount of pressure and when you use too much, and the vibration response indicates when you hit the 30-second marks and when you have completed the full two recommended by the dentist. minutes of brushing.

With the iOS or Android app, you can connect your iO via Bluetooth for more advanced feedback and control, including a guided brushing mode that shows you where you’ve cleaned and for how long, with a simple graphical representation of your teeth.

Design and features

The new industrial design of the iO is a huge improvement over previous Oral-B smart toothbrushes in every way. They’re sleeker, with redesigned interchangeable brush heads that not only have a better mechanical connection to the base, but also flow into the body with a smooth dive-point connection point. The black version I reviewed has a matte, slightly textured finish that feels and grips very well, and the built-in display is bright and full color for an easy understanding of what mode it is in, as well as its battery status. charge and a quick report card on the quality of your latest brush via smiley face comments.

Both visual and force feedback work very well on this model, with an easily visible LED ring that glows green when you’re using just the right amount of pressure and quickly turns red when you push too hard. As a serial excess pressure planer this worked very well to modulate my bad habit, and instead I was able to get into a rhythm of properly applied pressure very quickly.

The new charger design lacks the plug that was present on Oral-B’s previous rechargeable toothbrushes and instead relies on a magnetic connection similar to the one Apple uses in its Apple Watch charger. I’ve found this tends to make it a bit more likely to fall out of the charger for stubborn stretches, but it also makes both the brush and charger easier to keep clean, and the charger takes up less counter space. The LCD screen will show you the charge level when placed in the charger while it is plugged in.

As mentioned, you can use Oral-B iO completely without the companion app, and it works great. But the app is a great way to help update your daily grooming routine, thanks to its guided brushing modes and accumulated brushing activity tracking. Guided mode shows you which region is currently being brushed, dividing your mouth into six separate zones (three up and three down). In my tests this tracking was a bit hit and miss when it came to accuracy, often getting it wrong in which area I was actively brushing. However, it was accurate enough to provide a general idea of ​​where he needed to do better work than he had done.

Over time, the app will use the information gathered from your guided sessions to give you specific advice on how to improve. It also allows you to self-report flossing, rinsing, and any gum bleeding for more detailed trend tracking over time.

Bottom Line

The Oral-B iO Series is at the top of the company’s line of electric toothbrushes, at $ 249.99 for Series 8 as reviewed, or $ 299.99 for Series 9. Kit includes two replacement heads in addition to the one that comes in the brush. , for a total of three, along with the travel case and charger (you get four heads in total on the 9 Series, as well as a charging travel case in addition to the additional mode and detection capabilities of the brush itself). By comparison, you can get a basic electric toothbrush for $ 50 or less.

That said, the iO offers excellent build and brushing quality, which will definitely leave your mouth feeling cleaner than it does with budget options. And its smart features are great if you want to be more mindful of your daily dental hygiene routine too. That, combined with its attractive and ergonomic design, means this is a great option, provided you’re willing to spend a little more on a premium device.

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