The Chinese tech is long past the point of “catching up” to the West. They’ve proven it with cell phones, they’ve proven it with tablets, and now they’re in the process of proving it with robot vacuum cleaners. One of those new beasts to emerge from China is the Xiaomi Mi robot vacuum.
Yes, the Xiaomi Mi; if the name doesn’t sound familiar to you, that’s because it’s still not as widespread as some other brands. But they are making huge steps forward with products such as this little cleaning robot.
Tell Me More of Xiaomi Mi, Then
First, let’s focus on what the little guy looks like and how it runs.
The Look of Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum
Most wireless robot vacuums opt for a circular shape. Of course, Xiaomi Mi designers took note of this, which is why you have this lovely, white round robot to clean your home.
Around its edges is a bumper ring. Its soft exterior allows the Xiaomi Mi to bounce off of surfaces without taking or doing any damage. You’ll enjoy watching it bounce from table to armchair like a flat white ball on wheels.
But why choose white as the color of a vacuum cleaner, you might be asking? Well, the pure white aesthetics give off a sense of cleanliness. When you use the Xiaomi Mi, you feel clean just by looking at it while it works.
On its top side, you will see two buttons. One of those is the Power button, but it doesn’t work like you’d expect a power button to work. Instead, it’s a mode changer – press it once and it will clean automatically press it again and it will enter spot-clean mode; last, but not least, if you hold it for a while, it powers down the robot.
The second button is the Home button, and once again it doesn’t function like most Home buttons on robot cleaners do. Whenever you push this button, the Xiaomi Mi will return to its charger.
What Accessories Does the Xiaomi Mi Come With?
No robot vacuum cleaner can work without a charger base, and Xiaomi Mi’s is as white as the little bot itself. But it’s also a charger that does a lot of work, considering it has to charge a battery that has a whopping 5200 mAh of runtime.
Another accessory you get with Xiaomi Mi is the cleaner. This is the tool you’ll be using to rid the brushes of the bot from all the hair and dirt.
The Bottom of the Bot
Looking at the underside of Xiaomi Mi, you can see three wheels, one of which is rotational. “Rotational” is also a good adjective for the spinning brush. Unlike the main, spiral brush that’s also here, this brush helps clean up around the corners.
How Does the Xiaomi Mi Clean?
Like all similar bots, the Xiaomi Mi prides itself on “smart cleaning.” You can leave it alone and it will do all of the work for you.
The main brush is designed to work both on hardwood floors and carpets. In terms of debris, the only issue this bot has is with finer dust and sugar on thick carpeting. Oh, it will vacuum it up, but it will take longer than most other vacuums to do so.
Back to the top of the bot, you’ll see a massive circle above the two main buttons. This would be the laser distance detection sensor. Xiaomi Mi will map your house out with it, as well as 12 additional laser sensors located at the bottom.
Basically, all you need to do is position the charger on the floor, somewhere the Xiaomi Mi can reach easily. That way you don’t have to worry about the bot stopping in the middle of a cleaning session.
But How Does It Work at a Distance Without Me Being There?
Good question, one with a simple answer – the Xiaomi Mi app.
You can download this app for free after you’ve purchased your vacuum bot. When you do, you can remotely activate it to clean whatever you choose it to.
However, some people like more control over their bot. The app will take care of that – you can control it as it does the cleaning, “telling” it where to go via the directional keys. Think of it as having a really useful RC car.
Naturally, the app is originally in Mandarin. However, you don’t have to worry, as you’re just a language change away from remedying this. It’s even better if you already speak Chinese.
The Benefits of the Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum
Normally, circular vacuum robots can be difficult to control. Not Xiaomi Mi, though. It can move about fast and turn just as quickly; in fact, it can turn 360° on a dime.
But it’s not just about the speed of turning with this robot. The Xiaomi Mi is a little under four inches tall. If you had any concerns that it won’t vacuum well under furniture, worry no further – its height lets it slide under any piece of furniture.
As stated, the Xiaomi Mi’s battery has 5200 mAh of runtime. That will allow it to run uninterrupted for nearly three hours. Any product with a battery that powerful is doing something right.
Each of the batteries has a two-year warranty. After that, it would be wise to replace them. This might be a bit of an issue, since the spares can rarely be found outside of the manufacturer itself, and they cost quite a bit when shipping from China is taken into consideration.
Xiaomi Mi is not really silent, but it’s far from being noisy. In fact, it’s a little louder than a typical rainstorm. So, instead of getting a noisy, dreadful gadget, you get a product with a soothing hum, the perfect white noise for you to do something else while it cleans your home.
Out of all the parts that make up the Xiaomi Mi, you’ll only have to maintain four – the battery, the main brush, the spinning brush, and the filter. Calculating the expenses, you can expect to spend a little under $100 a year for maintenance. That’s a surprisingly low number, making the Xiaomi Mi a value purchase.
Works Wonders on Hardwood Floors
It might struggle with carpets, but there’s no denying that the Xiaomi Mi cleans up hardwood floors faster than most robots. This includes all debris, large and small.
Potential Flaws of the Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum
Not Too Good with Hairs
People who have purchased the Xiaomi Mi complained that the bot frequently had issues with hair. If you’re a pet owner, you might want to skip the Xiaomi Mi altogether.
The Chinese Hurdle
It might sound a bit insensitive, but the fact that this robot is entirely China-based can be a problem. For example, the app and the instructions use Mandarin as the basic language and require setting it up for users that don’t speak Chinese.
Moreover, the spare parts, including the battery, can only be bought from China. You might end up paying far more than you need to for a simple battery change.
While it isn’t terrible with carpets, the Xiaomi Mi simply doesn’t perform as well as other robots on the market. This isn’t just the issue with hairs; it also deals with finer debris that can dig deep into the carpet.
A Few Closing Words
Xiaomi Mi robot vacuum cleaner is another in the line of decent bots for your home. It will work independently and clean up your hardwood floors in no time. Despite its shortcomings, the Xiaomi Mi will leave you with a clean house and a smile on your face.
An all-out tech enthusiast who is deeply passionate about what the future holds for us in terms of technology and smart homes.