Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum Cleaner — LIDAR-Based Navigation for ~$350

By Michael Fisher·Updated: Feb 13, 2019· 4 min read

If you are looking for a powerful, functional, smart and not an expensive robot vacuum cleaner, the Xiaomi Mi Robot would be your best choice. Mi Robot is a new vacuum cleaner from Chinese fast-growing hi-tech company Xiaomi which has become very popular in the last few years. Xiaomi Mi Robot costs more than twice cheaper than main competitors with similar features. It has a perfect minimalist design, powerful and quiet brushless motor, intelligent path planning, equipped with an LDS saser for mapping, has long battery life and a smartphone App.

The Xiaomi Mi Robot Specifications

Xiaomi Mi RobotSpecs
Weight3.8 kg
Vacuum MotorNidec brushless DC
Dustbin capacity450 ml
Dry/wet moppingno
Full bin indicatorYes
Side brushYes
Cliff detectionYes
Recharge & ResumeYes
Amazon Alexa & Google HomeYes
Suction Power1,800 Pa
Smartphone appyes
Recharge & resumeyes
Virtual block offsyes
Zone cleaningyes
Mappingyes
BatteryLi-ion, 14.4V / 5,200mAh
Working Time150 min
Recharging time3-4 hours
Dimensions13.58 inches x 3.15 inches
Accessories in the packageCN plug, Charging Base, Brush cleaning tool

Robot vacuums mentioned in the article:

Xiaomi Mi robot testing

Design & Features of the Xiaomi Mi Robot

The Xiaomi Mi Robot has a modern minimalist design. It is 13.5 inches in width, 3.8 inches of height and 8.4 lbs of weight. It has a smart «brain» with three powerful CPUs (ARM Cortex A7 Quad-Core processor, TI Digital Signal processor, and ST ARM Cortex M3 Microcontroller) called Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM) movement algorithm. The processors receive data from 12 different sensors that ensure the robot to build a layout of the cleaning area and calculate an efficient way of cleaning on its own. Powerful brushless DC motor delivers 1,800 Pa of suction power. When the map is created, the Mi Robot follows it navigating back-and-fourth in straight lines.

In the Mi Home app, you can watch how the Mi Robot builds a map and track its movements in real-time, see where it has cleaned and which areas are left to be done.

Mi Robot powerful DC motor

The Mi Robot Vacuum Cleaner has 12 sensors that help it to maneuver around.

Xiaomi Mi Robot sensors

It is effortless to clean the robot, open the lid on the top and threw away dust from the container.

cleaning the robot vacuum cleaner

The Mi Home app lets you control vacuum's status remotely: watch the robot moves in real-time, toggle it off or on, schedule time for automatic cleaning and switch between suction modes - standard, quiet and active, etc.

In the app, you can create virtual boundaries that will keep the Mi Robot from crossing the areas you choose. Also, with the latest update, the Xiaomi received a "zone cleaning" option. By drawing a rectangle on the created map, you set a zone where you want the robot to clean.

Smartphone App to control the Mi Robot

The Mi Robot has a Laser Distance Sensor (LDS) located on the top which allows it to scan all your rooms and create a detailed plan of your house. The sensor scans the perimeter of the room 360 degrees at 1,800 times per second. The laser creates an accurate map thanks to which the Mi Robot recognizes where it is.

Laser Distance Sensor - Xiaomi MiJia robot vacuum

When the battery's energy get below 20%, the Mi Robot automatically docks itself, recharges up to 80% and resumes cleaning from the place it left off.

Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum parking on the base

YouTube reviews of Xiaomi Mi Robot

What issues the Xiaomi Mi Robot faces?

The robot can bump with its "head" not fitting under some furniture.

The Mi vacuum cleaner is not able to deep clean thicker carpets, because it's climbing ability is 15 mm which means the robot can't move on carpets that have more than 1.5 cm of height. However, it does a great job on bare floors and thin (up to 15 mm) carpets.

Price & Purchasing Details

The Xiaomi Mi Robot is available to buy on Amazon as well as on Gearbest.

  • It costs ~$350 on Amazon coming with the Amazon's Choice label and free two-day shipping for Prime members.
  • On Gearbest the Xiaomi Mi Robot has a $310 price tag.

Pros of the Xiaomi Mi Robot

  • Affordable price — Mi Robot is much cheaper if you compare it with similar models that have mapping
  • Impressive run time — two and half hours of continuous cleaning (thanks to the 5,200mAh lithium-Ion battery)
  • Nice minimalist design
  • HEPA filtration that is ideal for people with allergy
  • Strong suction power is able to deep clean thin and medium-pile carpets
  • Intelligent path planning and home mapping system helps the robot to remember where it has cleaned and what places are left to be cleaned doing cleaning is more efficient
  • Virtual walls help to keep the robot from certain places
  • Zone cleaning is a helpful feature for those who don't want to vacuum the whole house, only some rooms
  • WiFi App for Android and iOS allows you to track, control and schedule the robot from your smartphone
  • Compatible with Alexa enabled devices and Google Home.

Cons of the Mi Robot

  • Does not have any extra accessories in the box
  • Is not able to vacuum thicker carpets.

Alternatives To Consider

The Xiaomi Mi Robot is one of the best on its price category with smart navigation and mapping that is based on the LDS laser.

If the mapping is important to you, have a look at the Neato D4 Connected. It has a similar cleaning performance yet costs more.

Also, the ECOVACS Deebot 900 comes with laser-based mapping and costs around $300.


Conclusion

Nevertheless that the Xiaomi Mi Robot cannot deep clean thick carpets, it still able to handle pet hair, dust, and dirt on a hardwood floor, tile, marble, laminate, etc., and thin rugs. With 150 minutes of running time, the Xiaomi robot cleaner is one of the longest lasting machines on the market. Is the Xiaomi Mi Robot still one of the best budget smart cleaners to buy in 2019? Definitely!

If you are looking for a powerful robot vacuum with mapping and path planning, take a look at the newest 360 S6 robot vacuum, it has very similar features but also can sweep and mop at the same time, has a washable filter, updates a map of a house in real-time and holds in memory the map of each floor.


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