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Help with Cleaning 

Left to its own devices, this next product can provide cleaning assistance.

ECOVACS Robotics DEEBOT N79S Robot Vacuum
click image to enlarge

Developed by ECOVACS Robotics, the Deebot N79s is an automatic floor cleaning device – in other words it is a vacuum cleaner that can operate without human physical guidance.  Rather than take the Isaac Asimov approach of creating robots in human form, Ecovacs has designed their robot, with its low profile, to suit its home / office type environment and its floor cleaning functionality.

Unpacking this robotic vacuum kit reveals the Deebot N79s floor cleaning unit plus a remote control device, a pair of side brushes, 2 high efficiency filters, charging station and a User Manual covering the English, German, Spanish, French and Italian languages.  Circular in shape, the Deebot has a diameter of 33cm and a height of 7.8cm giving it an all-round view of its floor level domain.  Encased within the Deebot mahogany coloured, rigid casing, with its protective rubber bumper, are its mechanics, dust bin container with a capacity of 300ml and a Lithium 2600 mAh battery providing the suction and mobility power aspects of this floor cleaning device.  The mobility aspect comes from a pair of wheels with ridged tyres on the base of the Deebot.

When setting up the Deebot for action, you will need to attach the two side brushes (already fixed in place with my review sample) and plug in the charging station to an appropriate power outlet.  Some care does need to be taken with the positioning of the charging station which require a solid backing block otherwise you could have a situation where the Deebot pushes the charging station along the floor as it tries to make the contact it needs to recharge itself.  When a connection is made, a blue light will flicker on top of the Deebot to indicate that charging is taking place.  The charging can take four hours before the Deebot’s initial use.  When charging is complete the blue light will emit a steady glow.

Positioned on the top of the Deebot is a control panel.  This panel features an AUTO Mode button and a Wi-Fi indicator light but does not provide an on/off power switch.  For this feature you need to look at the side of the Deebot to locate the appropriate toggle switch.  As the Deebot moves around a designated area on its two wheels with guiding sensors to realign its direction when needed, the side brushes and the vacuum’s main horizontal brush will gather the dust and whatever else is to be found.

The Deebot is capable of operating in five different modes.  By default you start in AUTO Cleaning mode which has the Deebot cleaning in straight lines unless it meets an obstacle forcing it to change directions.  Spot Cleaning mode is used for highly concentrated areas of dirt or duct.  The Deebot will focus on such an area using a spiral pattern with the maximum suction power.  The third mode is for the edge cleaning and comes into its own for working on the edges and corners of a room.  When only a single room needs to be cleaned then the appropriately named Single Room mode can be selected.  You will need to close the door of the single room to get the best results.  Indicating that the Deebot will need charging from time to time in the presence of the charging station the Deebot will automatically switch into the Return to charge mode when it detects its battery is getting low.  As well as the various modes, the Deebot can be programmed to operate on a set schedule at a time to suit the owner.

Providing some form of  human control over the Deebot, when in operation, is a remote control that is included in the box.  This remote features a display area, directional buttons and controls for the various modes.  If you prefer you could download the Ecovacs Home app from the appropriate store.  As is becoming increasingly common with such apps, you will need to create a free account with the entry of an email address and password.  You will need to select the type of Ecovacs product you are using and the app will make the necessary connection as long as the Deebot is switched on and within the vicinity.  Using the app you can select the appropriate mode and help navigate the Deebot if it should become trapped within an arrangement of obstacles as is currently happening now,  I should point out that the arrangement of obstacles was a normal situation and not one that was created for the specific purpose of testing the Deebot.  The app also provides information as to the status of the device whether it is cleaning or on standby plus its battery capacity status.

One feature that the Deebot could not cope with is that of stairs.  Like the late lamented K9 robot from earlier Dr Who series, the Deebot is stymied when faced by this element found in most homes.  This robotic vacuum just turns away from the stair challenge and proceed in another direction.

Although not particular noisy in operation, the Deebot is loud enough to indicate its location if it ventures into another room, without you noticing it, on  a general cleaning expedition,

Overall I was impressed with the performance of the Deebot N79s and could even forgive the stairs problem as I struggle when attempting to climb stairs.  The Ecovacs Deebot N79s is currently listed on Amazon priced at £219.98.

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OverallEcovacs Deebot rated 80 out of 100

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