Sunday, 16 October 2022 19:49

Ecovacs brings your own robot personal cleaning butler in the Deebot X1 Omni

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Ecovacs Robotics has delivered a real game-changer with the most advanced robot vacuum cleaner yet in the X1 Omni - a personal cleaning butler that obeys your voice commands, delivers an incredible clean, and then takes itself back to base for its own cleaning, emptying, and charging all ready to run again.

Robot vacuums are not new; this writer had one in 2007. I was initially both shocked and impressed by how much dust and fluff it revealed had been previously hiding under the couch. However, it fell down stairs, it got entangled in children’s toys, and routinely its dust collector would become disconnected and we found it driving around blowing dust everywhere.

Fast forward to today and newer models exist with more advanced tech. And none of these is newer or more advanced than the Deebot X1 Omni from Ecovacs Robotics.

Ecovacs is definitely not a newcomer to the field; it has been in business for almost 25 years now. It dominated the Chinese robotics market by 2013 and came to Australian shores five years ago working hard to break down long-standing perceptions about what robot vacuum cleaners can and can’t do. In fact, over 38 million homes worldwide enjoy Ecovacs’ products for cleaning their homes. And, after using it myself, I’m convinced you should too.

As you'd expect by the name, a robot vacuum cleaner propels itself around your home sucking up dirt and dust on both hard floors and carpeted areas. It keeps track of its base charge station, where it returns at the end of a clean or when it’s low on power.

Sure enough, the X1 Omni does this - but not all robot vacuums are equal, and the Deepbot X1 Omni is so imbued with features it can be difficult to know just where to begin.

It's a cute little disc-like robot that drives itself around with spinning brushes in front to sweep dust into its vacuum underneath, and spinning mop pads on its rear - because, yes, it’s a mop too. After sweeping and sucking an area the X1 Omni switches into mop mode and runs back over its path washing and wiping too.

DEEBOT X1 Family Feature KV 4 stage Cleaning System Horizontal Clean

This does mean its base station is more than simply a charger - it's a taller structure with two water tanks - one for clean water in, and one for dirty water out. Thus, as well as returning home to charge, the X1 Omni returns home to empty its dirty water and refill its clean water, and also to dry off its mopping pads. At the same time, it ejects its dust container into a bag inside the station for later emptying and replacement. iTWire has been using the X1 Omni daily for four weeks and our bag is nowhere near full. However, I do refill the water tank every third day. Your mileage will vary, as this depends on the size of your floor space and the frequency at which you clean.

DEEBOT X1 Family Feature KV OMNI Station Horizontal Clean

Here's my dirty water tank - it's almost horrifying to see, but proves the robot is doing a great job; this is simply ordinary walking about in a home; it's not like we live on a dirt floor!

EcovacsDeebotX1OmniDirtyWater

What's more, the Deebot X1 Omni is no dumb robot; while it has buttons to start and stop on both it and on the base station, it can also be voice controlled and controlled from your smartphone via a companion app. You don’t need the app to use the X1 Omni, but it does provide you with a great deal of extra functionality.

You can view the map your X1 Omni has made of your home, showing the rooms it has determined along its travels. This mapping feature is constructed with built-in laser tracking and it ensures deeper, more efficient, systematic cleaning of your home than with other robovacs that simply potter around for two hours. You can direct the X1 Omni to auto-clean and use its own determination of where to start and where to go or you can explicitly direct it to a specific location for immediate attention. Additionally, you can create another two maps for three total - perhaps for multi-level dwellings, or for taking the robot between locations, or for other purposes.

EcovacsDeebotX1OmniMapping

Additionally, the app allows you to tap into the vacuum's front-mounted camera and it's surprisingly engaging and engrossing to transform into a floor-level disc and see a view of your home you otherwise might not. By connecting the X1 Omni to your home Wi-Fi you can use the app from anywhere in the world to see what’s going on back at home. It can be fun going under a couch or seeing the family pet appear on screen as it towers over your viewpoint.

EcovacsDeebotX1OmniDownlow

This also means the X1 Omni can provide a level of security for you, with a roving camera and with noises and activity appearing from inside your home. It doesn’t even need to clean; you can set the robot off in patrol mode. And, what’s more, you can remote control and drive it yourself. It doesn’t include a horn, but you can talk to family and pets, cleaning the floor as you go.

Meanwhile, its laser guidance also makes it smart enough to avoid drops and traps, and it operates at such a low volume you can easily still watch television or hold conversations and other activities. It’s not totally silent, of course, but if your only experience with vacuums is traditional handheld vacs then you’re in for a pleasant surprise.

It's a clever vacuum that sucks, mops, wipes, takes itself about, maintains itself, avoids obstacles, and is unobtrusive - yet also looks good when you notice it, too. It’s wrapped up in a stylish industrial design from Jacob Jensen, the same design house responsible for many years of premium Bang and Olufsen products.

Technical specifications include:

  • 5000Pa sucking power
  • AIVI 3D and TruMapping technologies with astrophotography-grade RGB camera
  • Self-cleaning, auto-empty, and auto-refill
First natural language YIKO AI voice assistant
4L clean/dirty water tanks in the base station
  • OZMO turbo 2.0 rotating mopping station
  • 180 rpm mopping pads
Four-stage deep-cleaning system with 95% cleaning efficiency
  • RGBD navigation sensor with HDR dynamic range imaging
Horizon GAI chip for autopilot navigation with 3D understanding of the environment

The Deebot X1 Omni (black) is available from Bing Lee, Godfreys, JB Hi-Fi, The Good Guys, and Ecovacs.com/au for a recommended retail price of $2,499. The Deebot X1 Omni (white) is available on Ecovacs.com/au.

I learned a lesson about value when speaking to fashionable ladies about their classic Burberry coats. They told me you have to think about the cost as dollars per wear, and I’ve often reflected on that. That applies equally as well here; yes, you could vacuum and mop yourself but what value would you place on having your own personal butler clean the home at night while you watch television or sleep, or during the day before you come home - every day or night - while also letting you dial-in and observe what’s going on at home? The Ecovacs Deebot X1 Omni offers you a completely hands-free experience and delivers tremendous value over its lifetime. It provides efficient cleaning, saves your time, and is replete with quality-of-life features and functions.

Keep reading for action videos ...


Firstly, here's the official Ecovacs launch video:

Now, here is my unboxing. This is exactly what'll you see in the box:

Setting it up for the first time:

After this, it went out mapping the house. There was some interest from the furry residents of the house. The cat was intrigued ...

CatInterest

 ... but the dog was less brave. He's much more comfortable with it now.

DogScare

After mapping, the X1 Omni returned to its base.

 Now it is ready to clean! Pressing the button - or using the app, or using voice control - sets it filling up its water tank and then heading out:

And here it is in action! Sucking, mopping ... the Ecovacs Deebot X1 Omni does it all.

 

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David M Williams

David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. David subsequently worked as a UNIX Systems Manager, Asia-Pacific technical specialist for an international software company, Business Analyst, IT Manager, and other roles. David has been the Chief Information Officer for national public companies since 2007, delivering IT knowledge and business acumen, seeking to transform the industries within which he works. David is also involved in the user group community, the Australian Computer Society technical advisory boards, and education.

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