What a Beast! Roborock S6 MaxV Brings Cutting-Edge AI Vision Technology Taking Navigation to the Next Level

By Natalie Red·Updated: May 14, 2020· 10 min read

Roborock, a prominent developer of intelligent vacuum cleaners, introduces its latest innovative product, the Roborock S6 MaxV. It's the first robot vacuum in the S-series lineup which includes a front stereo camera, allowing advanced obstacle recognition and avoidance technology called ReactiveAI. It's also the first robot vacuum which uses a powerful CPU APQ8053 from Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. giving the MaxV cutting-edge on-device AI performance.

Update (May 5): I’ve got an opportunity to test the Roborock S6 MaxV. Currently, I’m working on a full review, but you can already watch an obstacle recognition and avoidance test on the video below:

Each robot it builds is designed to fulfill a singular purpose: To give people more time to spend on the things they love.

The camera allows the machine to recognize and avoid small objects. The Qualcomm processor ensures powerful image processing technology allowing the robot to recognize and avoid objects faster and more efficiently.

Because of the stereo camera built-in, the robot avoids small things which means pet owners and parents can run the robot with fewer worries than before knowing that it will not run over small kids' toys, etc.

The advanced laser technology, in pair with the stereo camera, helps the S6 MaxV to estimate the size and location of common obstacles and calculate the most efficient way of cleaning around them. 

 

Advanced Navigation & Object Avoidance

The Roborock S6 MaxV is equipped with Lidar which in tandem with dual camera builds an accurate map of an interior. Once the map is created, the robot divides it into separate rooms in order to send the robot work in a particular room or two.

The most significant improvement is the dual camera.

Combined with the LDS sensor, it not only sees obstacles on its path, it also calculates their location and size rerouting its path around them. The camera captures detailed images at a maximum speed of 30 fps thanks to which the powerful processor recognizes and avoids common obstacles such as pet waste, shoes, scales.

Almost perfect navigation got even better.

«The seamless integration of ReactiveAI with our advanced laser technology allows the Roborock S6 MaxV to estimate the size and location of common obstacles and the best way to clean around them, setting the standard for our smartest navigational robot vacuum yet,» Richard Chang, CEO of Roborock said. «The powerful image processing technology behind it has led us to work with Qualcomm Technologies for the first time, a journey we are delighted to begin as we continue to imagine the next generation of robotic vacuums to navigate today’s world.»

The new Roborock is powered by a new processor, Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 Chip. The machine has ReactiveAI technology which is learning hundreds of thousands of images so the robot knows what the object looks like and avoids it when senses one.

Dev Singh, senior director of business development and head of autonomous robotics, drones and intelligent machines at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. said:

The advancements that Roborock has made in the Home Robotics industry these past years are remarkable. We’re thrilled to work with Roborock on their first product to launch with a stereo camera and a Qualcomm APQ8053 heterogeneous processor – powering the MaxV with cutting-edge on-device computation performance plus long-lasting battery life - in an effort to bring the next generation of innovative robot vacuums to life.

Dev Singh, senior director of business development at Qualcomm Technologies

ReactiveAI is trained on tens of thousands of images to learn about common objects and it’s all powered by a fast and powerful Qualcomm APQ8053 processor.

Even when it can't recognize an object down to as small as 5 cm wide and 3 cm tall, the S6MaxV passes by one. No more worry about a cup of coffee left, small toys, wires, etc.

The new improvements are going to make the Roborock S6 MaxV even more efficient than the previous generations were.

Battery

The Roborock is equipped with a 5,200 mAh battery which is able to provide up to 180 minutes of cleaning. Enough to cover a big area.

Even though the unit has a long-lasting battery, when the cleaning area is big, it might not be enough power to finish cleaning on one charge. Older models returned to the dock when the battery was 20% low, recharged up 80%, and resumed cleaning. That means you have to wait longer until the machine finishes cleaning. The new Roborock has smart Top-up technology. It calculates how much power the robot needs to finish cleaning so when the S6 MaxV is docking, it juices up to the level of power it needs to finish cleaning saving recharging time.

Mopping & how well the robot performs on hard floors

The Roborock S6 MaxV can do sweeping, mopping, sweeping and mopping at the same time.

Roborock S6 MaxV provides impressive cleaning performance
Roborock S6 MaxV provides impressive cleaning performance

You can customize suction power and water output for every room in the house including shutting off suction completely if needed. For example if you see wet stains I would suggest turning the suction off.

Getting back to mopping, the system is similar to what I have seen in the Roborock S5 Max. A big 300 ml water container which can cover up to 250 sqm (2690 sqft) of mopping area. Along with the water container, the robot has a mopping pad. The spring-loaded mop pushes the mop pad to the floor with approximately 300g of pressure which provides better mopping performance. The Roborock S5 Max was even able to get rid of stains which is rare for a hybrid robot vacuum.

Roborock S6 MaxV testing mopping
Roborock S6 MaxV mopping test

To make stains I used a mix of cocoa and Coca Cola. I do not recommend (and so does the manufacturer) to add detergent into the water tank because it might lead to filter clogging. If you want, you can put some directly on the floor or on the mopping cloth. When testing mopping, I figured that to cover my cleaning area (53 square meters of the cleaning area) on high water output, the robot needs 170 ml of water. When it docked itself, I saw about 130 ml of water left in the tank, enough to go for another circle.

Keep in mind, this option will not replace actual mopping but if you use it as often as possible it will definitely help to keep maintaining your floors clean in between big jobs. I use this option a lot.

To make the Roborock avoiding a carpet, set no-mop zones which become active only with mopping attachments on.

Along with no-mop zones, you can create no-go zones. No-go zones are always active when set.

Another handy feature is the mopping schedule. By setting the S6 MaxV to mop a particular room, you can customize the suction level and water output depending on mopping tasks. Once the machine is docked, it switches water preventing leaking.

Roborock S6 MaxV handles pet hair with ease

Roborock S6 MaxV is a good choice for pet owners
Roborock S6 MaxV is a good choice for pet owners

Roborock App

If you are already familiar with the Roborock and Mi Home apps, you probably know about the functions they have.

  • Basic features allow to turn the robot on/off, schedule it to clean at a specific time, and send it to the dock.

Advanced options allow setting the robot to work within a specified area, keep it from entering some zones, order it to clean a room directly, or send it to a certain point on the map if needed.

You can set water output and strong suction if needed.

Let’s talk a bit about each. When the map is complete (if multimapping is not turned on) the robot automatically divides it into separate rooms like this:

So far the Roborock app does not allow renaming rooms but the Mi Home does.

If you are not satisfied with the way your rooms divided, you can merge or divide it manually.

My Roborock did an excellent job at diving the rooms so I almost didn’t have to change it.

When the map is created you can turn on the multifloor maps if needed (keep in mind, when this feature is turned on, you can’t schedule the robot to clean a certain room).

I’ll talk about multimap later and explain how exactly it works. Unfortunately, for now you can’t schedule the robot to work in a particular room with multifloor on.

For instance, you can see the difference in schedule settings with and without multifloor:

With one map, you can set specific rooms to be cleaned.

I actually like the way scheduling work in the Roborock S6 MaxV. You can not only customize where and when the robot should clean but also set water output and suction level for each room.

When you see the main screen, there is a «map settings» option where you can choose from setting no-go zones, edit rooms, and editing the map.

Another new feature is room sequence. Now you can prioritize which room to clean first and this feature is handy. If you sit in the bedroom and don’t want the robot to clean there just now, it can clean the other room.

You can also order the robot to clean specific rooms and from there you can run the robot up to three times in one room if you see it gets dirty quickly. For me, the kitchen is that room.

Another convenient feature is no-go zones. You can set a barrier or draw a rectangle depending on the shape of the zone you want the Roborock to avoid.

And if the mopping attachments are on, you can also set no-mop zones that become inactive when you remove the mopping pad. With no-mop zones, the robot can avoid carpets in mopping mode.

Zoned cleaning is another helpful feature that allows drawing an area you want the robot to clean.

The amount of no-go zones is unlimited and in addition, you can set how many times (up to three) the robot should clean this area.

Target Point sends the robot to a specific point on the map in order to clean there. Handy if you don’t want to use the remote control.

The app allows you to see cleaning history.

Last but not least is the camera-related features:

When turning those on I noticed significant improvement over obstacle recognition and avoidance.

Multilevel mapping & The robot for a multi-story house

We have been waiting for this for so long and finally, Roborock implemented full multi-map management. The new robot stores up to 4 floor plans. So how exactly is this work? I don’t live in a multi-level house but I wanted to test this out so I managed to create three maps in my small apartment.

To create the first map, I start the robot from the dock in my living room and close the door. When it has finished cleaning, it returned to the dock and created a new map. You have a few options here: to save it as a new map, restore from historical map, and update saved map.

I haven’t tried the «restore historical map option». I think it just sets the already existing map.

«Update saved map» is a great feature if you want to remap a part of your house like one room or a part of your room so you don’t have to run the robot over the whole place.

At this point, my first level map (living room map) is created. The robot has returned to the dock and proposed me to update or restore the map.

I then placed the dock and robot to my bedroom. I started the robot from the dock and did absolutely the same. When it has finished, I have two created maps (read two maps for two floors).

The best feature about multimap which I didn’t realize is that you can create a map without having to move the dock even for the first time. For my third map, I placed the robot in the kitchen and started cleaning.

Once it finished the job, the third map has been created which means you don’t have to move the dock to another level if needed.

When the robot stops cleaning it returns to the point where it has started.

So now I have three maps for three floors.

The thing with the charging dock. If you create a map with a dock being in the same room and start the robot from the dock and then move the dock to a different level, the robot will be running around the room looking for the base. In this case, you will have to remap the level.

If you start the robot from anywhere in your home (without a dock) to let the robot create a new map, it will clean, build the map and alert when it has finished proposing you to save the map as a new one if needed.

I find this extremely convenient. You don’t have to move the dock between the floors anymore, isn’t it great?

Is the Roborock S6 MaxV suitable for carpet?

The new model is 25% more powerful than its predecessors delivering 2,500 Pa of suction (compared to 2,000 Pa other Roborock robots have).

The S6 MaxV identifies carpet. Once it senses one, the robot boosts suction to the max level to provide the best cleaning results.

2,500 Pa of suction power provides great performance on carpet
2,500 Pa of suction power provides great performance on carpet

The cleaning brush has lots of bristles to pick up things and also detachable side tips to make hair removal easier.

The Roborock S6 MaxV has a washable E11 HEPA filter and is safe for everyone suffering from allergy or asthma.

The older models were suitable for low and medium-pile carpets. Because of stronger suction, the newest model provides better cleaning performance on medium-pile carpets catching pet and human hair and dust hid away.

The same as with the previous models, the newest Roborock can climb an obstacle up to 20 mm (0.79 in) tall which means smooth passing by thresholds and thick carpets.

Can climb on a 2 cm obstacle
Can climb on a 2 cm obstacle

About Roborock

Roborock has been producing robot vacuums for about 6 years so far.

Founded in July 2014, Beijing Roborock Technology Co., Ltd. (Roborock) specializes in the research, development, and production of products that make people's lives more comfortable. The company develops and produces robot vacuums under its Roborock brand, as well as creating robot vacuums for one of China’s largest technology companies, Xiaomi.

Currently, Roborock is available in 40 countries, including the U.S., Germany, France, and Spain. The company operates out of four locations, with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Hong Kong.

Read more about the Roborock S6 MaxV on the official Roborock website.

To know more about Roborock, feel free to visit its official website and join the unofficial Roborock community on Reddit.


Comments ()

  1. Gryf
    #      0
    Hi Natalie,

    thanks for the review. As the S5 Max has now also received a new firmware with multi-floor support, I was wondering whether the S6 MaxV suffers from the same limitation that you when you enable support for multiple floor maps, you can no longer schedule cleaning of individual rooms?

    Bye!
    reply   
    1. Natalie Red
      #      0
      Hi there, I haven't tested this yet so frankly saying I don't know. I will soon have a chance to test the latest S6 Max V and will get back :)
      reply   
    2. cbsgrillo
      #      0
      Thanks for your review, it's fantastic this vacuum robot.
      But I have a big curiosity, do you know why Roborock us only one side brush instead two like Deebot Ozmo T8 and similars from this brand?
      I have a mid level robot here on Brasil but I will upgrade with a top level robot when Covid19 to finish and I in doubt between this new Roborock S6 Max ou Deebot Ozmo T8.
      Do you will make a comparison S6 Max vs Ozmo T8 soon?
      Thanks a loto and best regards.
      reply   
      1. Natalie Red
        #      0
        Hey. I am not going to get the DEEBOT T8 but I hear it has issues with the app and losing data like most of the DEEBOTs do. For instance, non-camera based models ECOVACS robots are not as gentle towards furniture as the Roborock cleaners so I can say that the Roborock are the best in terms of navigation (at least those that do not have a camera).
        As to your question, I don't think two side brushes do make a huge difference.
        As far I know that the Roborock S6 MaxV is more secure as it doesn't send data to the cloud. It is also powered by a powerful Qualcomm processor which helps it to recognize objects faster.
        Until the company fixes the issues with the app, I would not recommend buying the T8…
        Best,
        Natalie
        reply   

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