Xiaomi Mijia 1S Second Generation Smart Vacuum

Mijia 1S V2

Long-term Update October 2023: See video right at the end…but read on…

Updated August 2021: For a couple of months now now we’ve been testing the very neat 2nd generation – I’ve provided a Banggood link here but I should say immediately that I’ve recently been told that Banggood cannot sell Xiaomi in the USA – so any USA-based subscribers might want to avert their eyes – or not – the link still has plenty of English-language resources and links for a good range of expendables). Here in Spain the current Banggood price is around €228 and bear in mind that covers tax.

The good news is that the vacuum WORKS – it has personality – Maureen loves it and immediately started calling it “Robbie”. I started off with a bad attitude because I THOUGHT the vacuum they sent spoke Chinese only – despite having the latest update to the Xiaomi Home APP – the APP could not even FIND this model, never mind allow me to control it. I searched the web and found nothing helpful at first. The only bit I did understand was “Chinese blah” WiFi – which prompted me to look for a new access point appearing on my mobile phone – it did – but visiting on the phone – did nothing.

THEN a very helpful reader piped up and told me to set “China” region in the APP – I did that and the APP immediately found the vacuum. The APP remained in English language – and I found a menu item to set the voice to English – SO my initial pessimism was unfounded after all!

Mijia 1S 2nd Generation Vacuum
Mijia 1S 2nd Generation Vacuum and charging base

And now there’s an English manual in the APP and the latter maintains a complete visual map of all the work it has done so far around the house. I won’t just repeat all the tech info you will find in the link above – but I must tell you that the 1S features both laser and visual sensors to build a map of your room(s) and to aid in positional accuracy. This is a FAR cry from the old HOOVER.

Mijia 1S 2nd Generation Vacuum
Mijia 1S 2nd Generation Vacuum

I plugged the charger stand into the mains at floor level and made sure the power (220v) was turned on – any excess cable can be neatly wrapped inside the base. After initially failing to understand a word when the Mijia 1S began to talk – and having failed to understand the Chinese-only instructions at first – I was ready to “throw in the towel”. There is a button on the vacuum which I pressed (after removing anything that looked like packaging) and with an attitude of “what do we have to lose” – I watched as the 1S came to life. It wandered around our (mixed carpet and stone as well as various obstacles such as our three cats, the odd chair, various cat bowls and stairs both up and down) living room floor with ease, cleaning up everything from dust to cat hairs.

This didn’t last very long as, out of the box, the internal batteries did not have a lot of charge. After strutting around the living room for a while, Robbie magically (completely automomously) found it’s way back to the charging base and plugged itself in.

We left Robbie alone for a while so we could watch some TV then pressed the button on the vacuum to start it running. It really is quite uncanny if you’ve never had one of these before – and for the best part of an hour, we could do nothing but stand back and watch as the machine continued, seemingly with purpose, wandering around the room, cleaning up, surprisingly well.

Mijia 1S 2nd Generation Vacuum
Mijia 1S 2nd Generation Vacuum

Regular readers will know I’m no stranger to smart devices – I’ve used them, designed them, broken them, improved them and yet here I was, standing in amazement as the machine went about it’s business – ducking under chairs and cupboards and emerging in every case without assistance. Several times it approached stairs and succeeded in cleaning right up to the edge without falling down or tripping up. It DID manage to curl up the corner of one small carpet but no more than I do every day when the damned carpet gets in the way of my feet.

Meanwhile, the unexpected happened – my ex-teacher, not-particularly gadget-friendly wife absolutely loves this and has already informed people that it is one of the best gadgets I’ve brought home to date.

dirt and hair picked up by the Mijia 1S

The best I can do for now is point you back to the Banggood link at the top of this page which has all the technical info in English and show you the video I took as Robbie was first cleaning the living room.

Ah, no – I can also show you the video I made for you of it’s second living room cleanup (once we figured out how to open the filter) – and this photo of the results – clumps of cat hairs and all sorts of stuff – needless to say my recently reviewed air duster made short work of that mess and dry-cleaned the non-washable filter A TREAT.

Just look at that stuff on the right – YECHHH. That came off our living room FLOOR, for heaven’s sake – and this was just a quick half-hour clean. Since then we regularly go off to our local lake for a swim, leaving the robot to get on with it for as long as it takes (it has to go off and recharge after maybe 2.5 hours of use).

I honestly did NOT expect these results at all – had it not been for my patient wife, I’d initially have put Robbie in a dark cupboard for punishment. I’m so glad we persevered as now we have an English-speaking device with HOURS of fun built in – not to mention actually being a useful labour-saving vacuum. I even have spare parts yet 2 months later, Robbie is nowhere NEAR requiring replacement parts. Will stairs send it off to it’s doom? NO. We did discover that flimsy doormats tend to curl up – but then, they do that with any vacuum.

And here is the video…

Is that a map of our living room and my office we see below?

The Robot has has developed a full map of the living room/kitchen area (blue), the hallway (yellow) and also my office in orange.

1S vacuum has built up a full map of our cave

It isn’t that long ago that, in that prequel to ALIEN – Prometheus, this cave-scanning stuff was science fantasy – and now it’s in my living room – our home in Spain is a “cave-home” and could pass as a series of connected caves – just as in the movie.

See the map on the right (built up in the App, unassisted, by the robot itself) – top right of the blue living room section is Robbie on charge, You can see various obstacles near the centre such as the solid table – one chair only shows up vaguely, that’s because it’s structure allows Robbie to go underneath – what you are looking at is a map at ground level – not what is ABOVE the robot’s height as that is irrelevant.

The vacuum figured out that it’s area of operation is two rooms separated by a hallway – hence the three colours. I can manually create no-go zones as well as schedules or just leave it to get on with the job unattended. See that red line on the right – a temporary “barrier” – I could have just selected a room to clean (in the APP) but I like playing.

I generally use red lines as you see on the right to created a no-go zone for the office as I usually have phone charger cables hanging down to the floor.

What happens if you have more than one floor? Well, the 1S unit doesn’t keep multiple floor maps though you can clean as much as you like minus the maps. If you move floors you must take the charger with you and start and stop operations at the charger. Right now we’re sticking with the one floor.

And what are those lines on the living room? Answer: the path Robbie took this morning when cleaning – quite thorough and methodical after a while.

You just know what’s coming next… another model with auto-empty bin into a hopper? A water tank?Hopefully.

Meanwhile we’ve spent more time watching Robbie than we used to spend DOING the vacuuming… the cats are still wary but we love our automated vacuum. I’ve also made an extended 4K version of my short video about the 1S.

If I were to simply select the living room, I’d hear “Starting targetted room cleaning..” – right – (orange) hallway only. If I query where Robbie is, a voice says “I’m here” – reminiscent of my wife responding “it’ll be where you left it” when I ask where something is 🙂

Ok, so enough of the gushing. I can target individual rooms and even partial rooms with the no-go zones – but one thing I would like is a “put extra work into this small region” feature. Let’s say there are some PARTICULARLY stubborn marks… a human would stop what they are doing, get a cloth and give those marks some special treatment – Robbie has no such skills – but maybe I’m being picky considering we’ve not had to vacuum for over a couple of months (the robot vacuums pretty much every day as our cats are very messy). Also the vacuum has 4 different cleaning modes from silent to ultra-enthusiastic so I guess if I used mode 4 that would take care of most stubborn dirt.

Did I honestly expect continuous, flawless operation? NO. Are we getting it? YES. For the past couple of weeks it has been way too warm here for much physical work but the robot doesn’t care.

Quick Update April 2022

Still working flawlessly, still on the first set of consumables thanks to regular cleaning. We were in the UK for 4 months Nov/Feb 2021 so Robbie sat there doing nothing. With house moving and other things to attend to, she’s not been used for a while and my wife has been in the UK longer than me, returning now – so this morning I set the robot off cleaning the living room and hallway – no problems at all – apparently the sensors are about due for a clean but that seems reasonable and it isn’t affecting operation.

Just a shame these things can’t clean up cat accidents…

Many months later

The vacuum continues to work perfectly or as near to perfect as humans can make, it seems. This week, Roberta had what can only be described as a senior moment after declaring it was returning to the doc which is conveniently placed at the base of our stairs. The device runs most days on nothing more than a START command from my phone and never has any issues at all – well – there’s a first time for everything…

October 2023 Long Term Update

See the short video below – next time someone passes comment about Chinese manufactures and longevity – please point them to this article. Also – note: 2.25 years of constant use later – the battery still works perfectly – I’ve never done even the turbo charge and gotten anywhere NEAR running short of battery power. As you’ll see below – not needed a single spare part in all that time… not even remotely. Good gadget and provides HOURS of entertainment – sadly our three cats won’t play ball and go for a ride.


22 thoughts on “Xiaomi Mijia 1S Second Generation Smart Vacuum

  1. This was an incredibly thorough and long-term review of the Xiaomi Mijia vacuum. The level of detail provided on setup, performance, and durability over two years of use is very impressive.

  2. Hi Pete,

    I’ve got a first generation of this model, bought it new in 2016, its still up and running.

    Liked it so much that i bought a second hand one last year and this one is cleaning my bedroom.

    Grteetings, edwin.

  3. Hi All,
    Sorry to intrude with a non-technical question.
    Do “Robbies” clean right up to the edges of rooms? My darling wife spends ages with a dustpan and brush getting dust from along the skirting boards that our normal vacuum cleaner misses.

    1. Hi Paul

      Well, this model does seem to get right into corners and around table legs. Thanks to having a 3-prong brush at one end, it rotates itself around a table or chair leg until it has cleaned up the dust/cat hair etc. Robbie has far exceeded what I actually expected – i.e. for it to be a nice item ot review and then put in a cupboard… no, it has scored me lots of points with my non-techie wife who loves it. I do wonder what it would be like to have a version with a huge wall tank which could auto empty the vacuum without assistance (more expensive models have this) – such tanks could store a few weeks worth of dirt. We pretty much have to clean the filter after every use (not that this is a big deal as I have a Lithium powered air blower – I mentioned it in the blog or on the video) which makes light work of that task.

  4. Hi Peter
    After reading your update about ‘Robbie’ and the reported good WAF rating I decided to purchase one from Banggood. It was on offer in one of their ‘Flash Sales’ for $369.99 USD Inclusive of VAT.
    I placed the order and subsequently got a message from BG that it had been dispatched. I also got a message from DHL giving me a delivery date. So far so good!
    Then I get a message from DHL saying they want £38.05 before they will deliver the item, this is for VAT and Advanced Payments (whatever that is!).
    I messaged DHL stating that when I purchased the item the sales page explicitly stated that the price was inclusive of VAT, and gave them a screenshot of the sales page. I said I did not see why DHL are trying to double charge me for the VAT.
    I stated that as I have already paid the VAT I intend to refuse to accept delivery of the parcel and request that it is returned to the sender.
    Although I had a read receipt for the email, I have had no response from DHL!
    I also messaged BG in the same vein, again stating it was my intention to refuse to take delivery. BG replied within 24 hours basically saying if I pay the DHL charge and send them the VAT document and the receipt they will refund the charge.
    Have you or any of your subscribers had such issues?

    1. I have not seen any comments about being charged VAT – seems to me this is DHL trying it on – I HATE DHL – they will possibly have nothing to do with you, most likely as they’ll claim that Banggood is their customer.

      My humble suggestion would be to hammer both Banggood and DHL for a response on this. Last time DHL tried that on me in Spain I told the guy to shove the package and insisted on a refund from the supplier. Also, earlier this year, shipping from the UK to Spain was a disaster. A very good UK pal of mine sent me an old professional router for free and even marked the item as a genuine GIFT – no commercial value. The driver would not part with it without claiming 36 Euros from me – I could not even get to see the parcel and it’s paperwork until I paid up. Had I been 10 years younger I’d have taken iy out on the driver – as representative of DHL trying to rip me off, knowing fine well that the paperwork clearly stated VAT inclusive – as it happens I paid the money – the router is in fact quite old and is sitting in a corner, rather useless.

      But in the last couple of months or so I’ve had no issues here in Spain with deliveries from the UK or China. As you know I get items from variuous companies to review – but I recently (just weeks ago) bought the Insta360 Pro X2 from Banggood via their normal channels – as my contacts could not get one for me due to the sales – so I went to the ordering site entirely as Joe average. I bought the camera (VAT inclusive price again) and it arrived, the courier needed to note my passport but no attempt was made at all to get any money out of me. It was a courier but I don’t think it was DHL – Banggood’s tracking info doesn’t seem to include the name of the courier used outside of China, sadly. As you have realised, Banggood are responsive – but surely DHL should be – if they don’t respond – hammer their social media until they do – in today’s world “shy bairns get nowt” to use a Georgie saying. It may do no good but on the other hand…

  5. Hi Pete,

    I’m still really chuffed with our Xiaomi vacuum – especially the mop option on ours as it will even do vacuum and mop at the same time – ideal for our wood laminate flooring downstairs at home.

    Bonus points also that it integrates really easily with HomeAssistant – for anyone out there using that IoT software. Some other people on GitHub have replacement firmware for these to make them run totally locally on your LAN with no Chinese apps. That said, we’ve taken our “Robbie” (sorry, stole the name too) to our holiday chalet and just run him “offline” by pressing the button on the top – no mobile app and no zones and exluded areas etc – but that’s fine as you just put things in Robbie’s way and that stops him wandering into rooms where he is not required.

    This purchase has won me serious wife points – which is unusual for a ‘tech’ purchase. I’d not be quite so chuffed without the mop function (Pete’s one doesn’t have this) as half of our house is wood laminate flooring and all of our holiday chalet is laminate. The mop feature is very very good indeed and much better at cleaning than you’d expect for a ~200ml water/detergent reservoir – we use water with a splash of zoflora. Both our homes have never been so clean and fresh smelling. Thanks “Robbie” and thanks Pete for the heads up!

    1. Thanks for the feedback Darren… I HATE using external clouds and every Tom, Dick or Harry’sAPPS – I have my Node-RED Dashboard do everything on my Phone and identically on my PC – having said that with the maps and controls in Xiaomi Home (I dont use the app for anything but the vacuum) it works just fine.The only improvement I’d make is multi-floor maps – but I’m guessing that’s as much the vacuum as the APP. Sometimes the floor scanning lags behind Robbie by a few seconds – but if they can handle 15 minute delays on Mars mission control I can handle a short lag while I’m wasting time watching Robbie 🙂 Our floor here is largely stone tiles – I tend to lift up little throw-rugs so they don’t get tangled… the cats lift themselves up when Robbie is working. As time goes on I get more greedy – but lots of folk are stioll unaware that AI vacuums are a thing. Now SPOT- I’d have one of those but the price is slightly different 🙂 what was it…. €74,000 ?

  6. Hi Pete – your review gave me the confidence to order a Xiaomi vacuum/mop robot via Aliexpress myself. It arrived in almost exactly 7 days from China to the UK. I went for the Xiaomi Mijia Mop Pro (Model STYJ02YM) which is also referred to as a “v7”. I am really impressed and they appear to have updated the water container design since earlier similar models that leaked – mine looks different.

    The mop feature is very good and it can vac and mop at the same time. We’ve never had such a clean kitchen floor and all our downstairs is laminate flooring and it keeps that really clean too. This has scored me serious ‘wife points’ as she often moans about having to clean two houses (our main home and our weekend/holiday beach chalet) so now we can put our feet up whilst much of the work is done by “Robbie the robot” – we stole the name idea from you as we couldn’t think of a better suited alternative.

    I’ve got it integrated with Home Assistant too although the phone app and the mapping is very clever indeed.

    I am really impressed. I paid just under £270 direct from China/Aliexpress and 7 days door to door via UPS. No nasty additional tax/duty surprise either – usually I limit my Chinese purchases to £15-20 per order as I’ve been stung in the past by Postman Pat.

    1. I’m jealous, Darren – I want the mop version. As for duty etc, you really take pot luck with that – couriers are having a field day right now ripping people off and blaming customs. Make no mistake – they are all sharks. But you hit lucky – that’s good.

      I’m happy with our 1S but I’m hoping to get a vac to compare and to leave permanently upstairs. I also have on the way from Banggood a set of spares – should keep us going for some time. It is often said you have to watch out for spares on Chinese purchase… well, I reviewed a Soocas X3 toothbrush some time ago (got 2 of them as a set) – got a set of spares, no problem – we binned our old-style Oral-B toothbrushes. I’m hoping the spares for the 1S will also do well – MAT from NotEnoughTech is still on his originals months later – bodes well.

      1. The wife is really chuffed with the vac and mop combination. We have wood laminate flooring downstairs so we use the vac and mop combined and then I make it do 3 cycles of the vinyl kitchen floor and it comes up sparkling. All of this whilst we are working. We only need to vacuum the stairs but they are not so dirty since we have Robbie the robot clean every 2 days so we don’t take dirt from the hallway to the stairs as the stairs is clean. Biggest gain is the kitchen.

        I bought mine from Aliexpress with the UPS shipping option which they suggest avoids duty. The box said $50 value I think so they were economical with the truth at the seller side.

        This device is available now for about £220 which is about £40 less than I paid. It changed my life as the wife now doesn’t moan that she has to clean 2 homes as our weekday home is done by Robbie apart from the stairs so weekend cleaning of our seaside chalet which is a quarter of the size of our main home us no big deal.

        Improve your marriage …buy a Xiaomi vac and mop robot!

  7. You should check the configured server in the app Xiaomi Home.
    I’m using China (mainland) and after the firmware update I can use the English voice.
    Also the App works fine in other languages.

    1. Did that – set to China mainland, this time after I held both buttons so the vacuum said “Toja WIFI” or similar in Chinese – That was “reset WiFi” in Chinese – the device appears in the list – I got as far as “connecting to device” – “sent message to device” and then.. connection error – this is despite removing the vacuum from the charger and making sure it was no more than a couple of metres away from my 2.4Gz (modern) router.

      Then finally I GOT IT.. “Rename device” – got stuck at page 2 out of 3 – could not go back or forward – “NEXT” faded – I had to reboot my (otherwise perfect) Xiaomi phone… NOPE – that was my phone crashing (never done that before but then I upgraded it this week). So, quick reboot of the phone and now the vacuum is in the APP and all set up – I noted a choice of voices – ENGLISH – WHEEEEEE… “Going back to the dock”. and there’s a map of all the vacuuming it’s been doing – and options for a no-go zone – and what kind of vacuuming (silent, standard, medium or turbo)- I love it…. scheduled tasks and more… and online USER MANUAL IN ENGLISH…. and a list of spares… what fun!

      Thanks, Kai.

    2. Yup, figured that out, thanks – It’s LOVELY – vacuuming 3 times a week until the novelty wears off – now it’s even doing my office, working around me. In standard mode it doesn’t make that much noise.

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