Video: iRobot Roomba 980 vs Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum

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Xiaomi’s first major foray into the world of robot vacuums was done in their usual way; provide a product that looks comparable on paper to the competition, but offer it for a significantly reduced price. This way of doing things has earned Xiaomi the success that they’ve enjoyed for years in China, and with Xiaomi’s slow global expansion it’s clear that the company is poised for serious growth in the future. Right now the Xioami Mi Robot Vacuum is generally only available in China, but thanks to sites like GearBest, you can import one for yourself and get it cleaning your house in no time. Whether or not it’s worth purchasing over iRobot’s venerable Roomba 980 is the question we want to raise here today.

In our previous test we saw the iRobot Roomba 980 take the win against Neato’s Botvac Connected, a product that’s priced cheaper than iRobot’s, so the question then remains whether or not the considerably less expensive Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum will face the same fate in the end. Sporting a brand new AI-based cleaning algorithm, and utilizing Xiaomi’s all-in-one Mi Home app, the Xiaomi Mi Robot Vacuum seemingly borrows what appears to be the best from many vacuums out there. The circular design is nearly identical to iRobot’s Roomba 980, and even has the long rotating side brush as well. Its filters and dust bin look and behave more like the Neato Botvac Connected, and even the single brush on the underside runs many parallels to Neato’s product.

For around $400 Xiaomi’s Mi Robot Vacuum well underscores the $899 you’ll have to pay for the iRobot Roomba 980, and indeed there are some caveats that you’ll face right off the bat if you choose Xiaomi’s model. In the video below you’ll find both vacuums going head-to-head in a cleaning challenge, and while this certainly will help determine a winner, there are many more things to consider when purchasing a robot vacuum than just cleaning ability. Check out our full written head to head for categories we don’t cover in the video. Things like virtual walls, maintenance, apps and more are considered, and in the end it might just help you make an excellent purchasing decision. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for more videos like this, and be sure to check out the head-to-head below!