I was going to review the iRobot Braava Jet a while ago, about the time I offered it as a gift, but I didn’t got the time to do that, and today I’m glad I waited a bit more, because now I can compare it with yet another unit sent to me by GearBest.com, the Donkey M1 mop. If you have lots of hard floors and you’re in the market for an automatic mop, than you should continue to read this small piece. You’ll find out in less than a minute:
- How effective is this new type of appliance
- What are the complete specs of the Donkey M1 sweeper
- Which is better, the Donkey M1 or the iRobot Braava Jet
- How well it moves in cluttered and uncluttered environments
- When should you buy one, and last but not least,
- from where to get it cheap
Robotic mops do not vacuum, and that is why they are smaller than their siblings, quieter, and work longer on a single charge (since they only have to move, and do not have to power the vacuum pump or the brushroll mechanism). I tried to catch these ideas in my photos and my very unprofessional video:
Here’s a more complete video from GearBest:
Since this is not really a vacuum cleaner, I’ll have to improvise a bit to maintain the same content structure which I’m using throughout my entire blog. If you’re reading this, I bet you’re avidly searching for a good robot mop. Here’s what you should be looking at:
This characteristic is a combination of capabilities that ultimately dictate the cleaning performance of any appliances of this type. E.g. steam, or scrubbing vibrations add up to the cleaning power. Unfortunately, the Donkey M1doesn’t feature any of these. It does however offer 2 cleaning modes: wet and dry. For this purpose, it does come with 2 different pads (white for dry dusting, and blue for wet mopping), and 2 different nozzles. These can be interchanged in a blink of an eye, because they are attached to the unit magnetically. The cloths are washable and have a good textile quality.
Be warned: this unit is not meant for carpets and in fact, it can not work at all on carpeted surfaces.
Input Power / Battery Life
Comes with a 2000mAh Lithium-ion battery, which allows it to function in dry mode for up to 4h, and in wet mode for more than 2h, covering surfaces up to 1100 sq ft. This is really impressive, considering that many actual cleaning robots work continuously for less than 1h. The unit doesn’t come with a charging bay, so there will be not automatic recharging – you’ll have to manually connect the power adapter to the M1. The bot charges in 2h, and the GPS beacon charges via USB cable in 4h. Speaking of batteries, it may be possible to receive the GPS beacon (and the robot itself, for that matter) with discharged batteries, so you may have to charge both before using them for the very first time.
The tank is really really small, and it resides in the wet mop nozzle. It can accommodate just 3-4 oz.
The white pad can be used in dry mode, for dry cleaning, while the blue pad is good for wet mopping. The package contains 1 white and 2 blue cloths.
Weight and Dimensions
Weights only 4 lbs. and measures 8.5 x 8.5 x 3.11 inches. It’s very small, short enough to enter under most pieces of furniture, and also features a plastic handle, so it’s easy to carry it around.
This is the place where the Donkey M1 really excels. The product uses an improperly named GPS beacon to locate itself in the environment. I’ve written “improperly” because the unit uses the signal produced by the beacon and reflected from the room’s ceiling. Remarkably, the unit starts to clean systematically the environment, even before it is communicating with the beacon. It constructs the environment map, and can use it in the future cleaning sessions. After the entire rooms surface is covered, the unit returns to the starting position (which is even more impressive!). The unit has to navigation modes: Fast clean and Deep clean. The “Fast clean” mode is destined for both dry and wet mopping, while “Deep clean” can be used only in wet mopping tasks. During the “Fast clean” mode, the robot systematically covers the entire surface, while in the “Deep clean” mode, the robot moves 1 time back, and 2 times forward (right and left). The Donkey M1 mop sweeper features powerful cliff sensors which prevent it from falling down the stairs, and the anti-collision strip allows it to avoid obstacles.
Depends on the distributor; the producer offers a 1-year warranty.
The box contains:
- the product manual
- a quick setup guide
- the power adapter
- 1 USB-mini to USB cable
- the GPS beacon
- the 3 clothes
- the 2 head nozzles
The Donkey M1 avoids cliffs, passes by obstacles and cleans efficiently. The unit is ready to go out of the box (check out the GPS beacon – if it flickers or maintains the red color, you need to recharge it). The robot shows that it is connected to the beacon when all 3 blue LEDs are turned on. It can memorize maps and return to its starting position when finished. The pads are easily placed one the magnetic nozzle. The sound produced is almost nonexistent. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with a remote control.
Donkey M1 mop vs iRobot Braava Jet
A good alternative to Donkey M1 is the new Braava model from iRobot, which they’ve just updated this year. Here’s a small comparison table, which can be expended at you suggestions:
Donkey M1 vs iRobot Braava Jet 240
Hassle Free Operation with smartphone app
|Cleaning radius (Dry/Wet)|
Final verdict and VGMrm
Playing with the Donkey M1 was a nice experience. The technology still has a lot of room to improve, but things are definitely moving towards a brighter future. The company behind Donkey already released this year other mop models (I’ll also be reviewing the Donkey E1 by the end of this week). Here’s the VGMrm (VacuumsGuide.com Mark for robot mops):
VGMrm table for Donkey M1
|Weight and Dimensions||10|
(VacuumsGuide.com Mark for robot mops)
All in all, one thing is clear: dusting and mopping can and will be done automatically in the near future. What’s your take on this?