Ecovacs is taking a step forward in the robot vacuums market by launching its Deebot 900, the third vacuum cleaner from the Chinese manufacturer to integrate a mapping system. In addition, this new version is able to provide a methodical navigation and adjust its suction power depending on the soil on which it passes.
The Ecovacs Deebot 900 – or D900 for the intimate – is the latest addition to the catalog of the Chinese manufacturer. Launched at € 449.99, this robot vacuum cleaner gently rubs Xiaomi Roborock S50 with its accessible positioning and extensive technical sheet. Thus, it embeds a mapping system in real time with its laser rangefinder, offers a methodical navigation and an application allowing the creation of virtual tags.
CONVENIENCE OF EMPLOYMENT
Ecovacs is choosing a round shape for all its robot vacuums, which is quite common. As is generally the case on the manufacturer’s robots, this device is surmounted by a laser range finder and thus reaches an overall height of 7 cm. Rather late, he can ensure the cleaning of the lowest furniture. Entirely lined with white plastic – such as the Xiaomi Roborock S50 – Deebot offers quality finishes and the assembly inspires confidence.
On the upper part of the robot, only a physical key appears: “Auto”. She starts the robot or pauses it. All other functions are accessible from the application, as we will see below. Too many LEDs either, if not the one that indicates whether the robot is connected or not.
Ecovacs connectivity and application
The configuration of the device to the Wi-Fi network is innate and runs smoothly. Ergonomically enough, the application allows standard functions such as weekly programming, remote launch of the device or access to the cards made by the robot.
But one of the features we particularly like is its ability to map in real time allowing the user to observe the evolution of the robot in the middle of the cleaning cycle. After each pass, the application provides a fairly accurate map of the environment in which the robot has circulated and if desired, the user can then install virtual tags to limit access to certain locations. Note that you can not install virtual tags during a clean cycle; it must be done before starting a cleaning. It is also possible to create cleaning areas (about 1 m²) so that the Deebot only cleans some spaces. The maps provided by the robot are easy to read and allow us to evaluate the effectiveness of the mapping fairly quickly.
The application ignores directional keys that would control the robot vacuum cleaner as you would with a remote control car. In addition, you can not activate additional cleaning modes. Only a “continuous cleaning function” allows this Deebot to return to the charging station when the battery is empty and automatically resume its suction cycle.
Congratulations finally Ecovacs for this very practical feature, one that reflects the state of the various elements of the robot vacuum cleaner. From the parameters, it is possible to follow the service life of the accessories and to obtain care instructions for the side brushes, the main brush and the HEPA filter.
With each difficulty, the robot does not fail to send alerts on the smartphone of the user to inform him of his condition.
On the maintenance side, this D900 uses the same codes as its predecessor, the Deebot R95MKII. This is how the two side brushes for clearing corners are now only recessed, not screwed. The same goes for the central rotating brush that is no longer screwed, unlike the Deepoo D68. This nesting system is much easier to extract and put back. Very unfortunate, waste tends to accumulate in the hole of the vacuum rather than in its collector, which compromises the maintenance of the device.
The manifold, with a capacity of 0.3 l, is easily accessible by lifting the hood on the upper part. It is embellished with a small handle that ensures a better grip. The mouth of the collector is preceded by a HEPA filter that dislodges easily. Behind this filter, there is another filter in the form of a small grid designed to retain lint and thick dust. By pulling this part, the user can finally empty the collector.
The Deebot 900 performs a zigzag trajectory. Our video (see link below) testifies to its passage in our laboratory that it travels in length. If this cleaning seems methodical, we can however surprise him to iron twice at the same place. That is reassured so far, its relatively comfortable autonomy allows it to perform this task easily. The navigation system is rather precise, the D900 rather ensuring a good coverage of the surfaces.
If one could find fault with navigation and management of the obstacles of the R95MKII, those of the D900 are rather well optimized. Drop point stairs as could be experienced by his eldest, which is a very good thing. However, we reiterate this astonishing observation already observed on the Xiaomi robot: the D900 perceives well and truly the finest obstacles (like the feet feet of chairs). However, he almost always comes face obstacles, but gently, without jeopardizing the furniture.
Trapped under a large (meeting) table and 60 feet of chairs (15 chairs x 4 feet = 60 feet), the D900 managed to suck as much as possible and get out of this labyrinth without any problem. This service is all the more surprising that under the same table, nonchalantly dragged electrical cables, first seen by the robot and then bypassed. This is not optimal, we agree, but we prefer this behavior rather than a forced suction of electrical wires that any robot could damage or in which it could lock.
Our comments will be a little less glamorous on the side of suction performance where the D900 revealed some weaknesses and especially on thick carpet. After cleaning for 7:10, the robot was only able to pick up 30% of the test materials, after which it returned gently to its base. This dismal result – which we could observe on the video in particular -, testifies to the inefficiency of the Deebot on this surface.
On fine carpet is better. After sucking the surface for 5 min 30 s, the D900 was able to recover 88% of the waste. Recall that on this surface, the Xiaomi robot has absorbed 93% of the materials in 5 min 20 s.
On hard ground, the results are mixed: 71.6% in 5 min 40 s. This is just enough to get a perfectly cleaned surface and the user will, in fact, restart cleaning to ensure that no dust has been forgotten.
The suction performance deployed by the Ecovacs Deebot 900 are clearly not up to those of the Xiaomi Roborock S50.
The Ecovacs Deebot 900 corrects some errors observed on the R95MKII yet sold more expensive. Some promises of the Chinese manufacturer materialize (system of orderly navigation, management of obstacles, rich and ergonomic application). If it provides rather good coverage of surfaces, we can regret the suction performance on thick carpet but also on hard ground – and for a vacuum, it is still the minimum expected. So yes, the Deebot 900 will perform its task without any problem, but it is better to launch it twice in succession for an optimal result. And for those with thick carpets or long-pile carpets, go your way.