Over the last couple of years, there has been a new category of home appliances that has started to appear on the market – the rise of the robot vacuum cleaners! Like a new kind of kitchen gadget, I was immediately interested if Robovacs could live up the the hype and promises they claimed.
In 2018, I finally gained enough confidence that these products had matured enough that I would not suffer from early adopter regret syndrome™… or so I thought.
Being frugal, and refusing to pay early adoper prices, I began hunting for second hand machines on ebay. From watching review and videos, it appeared as though Samsung and Xiaomi (designed and manufactured by Roborock) were the leading contenders to look out for.
Initially I picked up a Samsung VR7000 – and it was terrible. The square shape and dumb behaviour meant that it frequently got stuck or lost, and failed to make its way back to the charging dock in time, leading me to rescue it from various places around the house. I only used it a few times, before a sensor error occured. This caused me to give up confidence in this vacuum, so I arranged for a warranty repair, before selling online for less than I paid for it.
I then turned my attention to the Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum. I found a good deal for $200 AUD for a perfectly working unit (gen 1), and decided to try it out. It did a fantastic job, not only returning to the dock successfully every time, but creating a very very cool™ floor map of our home that I could see on my phone. Yes, the Xiaomi was in the good books.
I could see that the Xiaomi also made more intelligent decisions about how to tackle the task – breaking the room up into small sections to conquer at a time. Additionally, it is easy to create clear boundaries for the Xiaomi using magnetic strips – and virtual zones can even be created using the app itself if so desired.
- Does it do what it says on the tin? Yes.
- Is it grandma proof? Yes.
- Do I recommend it? Yes.
- How could it be improved? No idea, its great. On second thoughts, it would be nice to have a mode to turn the suction off so that my cat could sit on it without being scared so I can drive her around… do you think we could fit that in for the next model Xiaomi?
- Rating: ★★★★★