Robots and China gadgets are certainly familiar with the Xiaomi Roborock series. The company 360, on the other hand, is less well known in Germany, as it already showed in 2017 with its 360 S6 that it can certainly compete with the top among.
In our test, you will find out how the around 400 Euro successor model S7 performs.
Scope of delivery
- 360 S7
- Charging station with modular power supply (including EU plug)
- wiping paper
- Minion Eye Sticker
There is no special surprise when it comes to accessories. In addition to the device itself, there is also the mandatory charging station and the advertised wiping attachment in the box. You won’t find replacement brushes, filters or other wipes. However, they can be bought at not very cheap prices.
The absolute highlight is, of course, the stick-on Minion eyes that come with the package. 😉
Technical details and processing
- Diameter: 35 cm
- Height: 10 cm
- Weight: approx.3.7 kg
- Battery: 3200 mAh
- Running time: 90-120 min (manufacturer information)
- Charging time: 3-3.5 hours
- Maximum step height: 2 cm
- Suction power (max): 2000 Pa
- Volume: up to 65 dB
- Capacity: 0.57 L.
- Water tank: 0.15 L
- HEPA filter
- Carpet Boost (suction power increase on carpet)
- WiFi (2.4 GHz), with app support (compatible with Alexa)
- LIDAR with SLAM (localization and mapping)
- Off-limit areas (no-go areas) can be set using the app
Not only in terms of name, the 360 S7, as the direct successor of the S6, is similar to the competitor Roborock S6 from Xiaomi ; the vacuum robots are also visually and technically comparable. However, since the models from 360 are a whole lot cheaper, the predecessor had already established itself as a valid alternative for bargain hunters who wanted to call a high-end vacuum robot their own for as little money as possible.
At the same time as the S7, 360 released the cheaper S5, which – despite the newer release date – is located below the S6 because it lacks a few features, such as the wipe function.
Technology and sensors
In contrast to the recently tested Eufy RoboVac 15C MAX, the 360 S7 has a LIDAR system, recognizable by the attached “tower”. Using the rotating laser measurement unit, a kind of optical radar, the vacuum cleaner can measure and map the premises in real-time.
The comparison of the available data with the current measurement results enables the robot vacuum to orient itself spatially and to react to unexpected obstacles. The functional principle of simultaneous position determination and map creation is abbreviated to SLAM.
An infrared anti-collision sensor is located in the center of the front bumper. On the right side, a wall sensor ( not described in more detail) makes sure that you do not touch your furniture when moving off the edges. Apparently, it also works on an optical basis.
The obligatory case sensors – four in number – should of course not be missing from a current vacuum robot.
Last but not least, the LIDAR attachment was also equipped with a physical collision detection system to protect it from damage in the case of deep, potentially accessible furniture, such as sofas or beds.
Setup of the 360 S7 – full access, please!
The 360 S7 is fed into the home network via the 360 智能app available in the app store and play store. Don’t worry, the interface has been completely translated into English – in many places not grammatically correct, but at least understandable.
You don’t have to understand why still so many, even larger Chinese companies save the 3 Mark 50 for a professional translation, but there are worse …
… and this is immediately apparent after installation. For some reason, the app requires access to the camera, contacts, phone, storage, and location. The latter authorization is required for setting up and communicating with the vacuum robot via WiFi.
Since the app has to read the SSID of the network and one could already determine the location of the user based on the WLAN name alone, the location permission is mandatory. The other requests can be safely rejected.
Another negative point: the vacuum cleaner cannot be used without online registration. This has become a common practice for many smart gadgets; So you don’t have to find it good.
The facility itself runs smoothly, provided that you have given your location authorization and deactivated the mobile data beforehand. All you need to create an account is an email address or a telephone number, as well as a password. If the instructions are followed, the vacuum cleaner is also recognized promptly and integrated into the local WiFi.
Functions and use of the app
The basic functions, i.e. starting the standard cleaning program and returning to the base station, can be activated using the two buttons on the top of the robot. For everything else you need the app.
It looks a bit overloaded at the first start, but it shines with many functions. After a short exploration tour you can find your way around relatively well. In the middle, you can see the currently selected card, provided the robot has already made at least one round. Above that, you can set whether the entire area, a certain area or individual rooms should be covered.
In addition, the overview also shows information about the room size, as well as the cleaned area and the elapsed time.
When creating the floor plans, which is done on-the-fly during cleaning, the software automatically recognizes more or less separate living areas and assigns them room numbers.
The structure of the card can unfortunately not be edited by hand in any way. For example, my living and dining area was recognized as two separate rooms that I would like to combine.
Artifacts cannot be removed either. Based on the measurements, the software assumed, for example, another room behind the mirror door of my bedroom closet. Such errors are probably difficult to avoid without non-optical correlation measurement (e.g. using ultrasound). But a subsequent, manual removal of the “ghost room” would have been desirable.
After all, the app can be used to determine “block-off” areas that should not be used – either absolutely or limited to wiping with a damp cloth. This is done using freely scalable rectangles that can be placed on the map. However, rotation or other forms are not possible.
The ten most current maps are automatically saved online and can be called up at any time – at least in theory. This makes it easy to manage different floors in a house. That the floor plans of my apartment are uploaded to Chinese servers, even if they are simply local to the robot’s internal memory … I am drifting.
Of course, the 360 S7 offers the usual standard functions, such as adjusting the suction power, creating schedules (one-off or repetitive), acoustic location or even an RC mode that allows manual control of the robot.
I find the “Intelligent zoning” quite practical, which not only allows you to select the rooms to be cleaned but also to directly determine the order in which they are to be processed. Under this menu item, you can also assign meaningful names to the rooms.
I hope that a few more editing options will be added in the future in order to be able to correct the previously described technical limitations and software misinterpretations.
“Cleaning makes me happy!”
What else is there to say about the 360 S7? She can speak. I am usually not a big fan of senselessly babbling smart gadgets that only talk because they can. Especially since some depressive, automatic speech outputs are often used that are just annoying.
However, the English voice of the S7 sounds friendly and motivated, also because it seems that real speech samples are used. This not only tells you when there is a problem but also gives you current status reports, such as when cleaning is finished, the robot is on its way to the charging station, the model has been changed and the like.
Gottseidank 360 also thought about incorporating an option for volume control. So you can reduce the voice to a comfortable level.
Trivia: The Chinese version is a completely over the top manga girl – if you like it.
The bottom line is that I am very satisfied with the cleaning result. The 360 S7 generally travels reliably and in a structured manner across all accessible areas on the map.
Thanks to live tracking and recording of the route traveled, you can immediately see whether a part has been left out. This sometimes happens when, for example, the room doors are unfavorable or … the vulture knows why.
However, since the software, as already mentioned, also allows self-defined zones to be vacuumed, the servant can be relegated to targeted detention within seconds if required.
Extrapolated, the battery in the “Standard” mode should be sufficient for more than 100 m². What is meant is the area to be cleaned, not the living space. That should be enough for most apartments or floors in a house.
Compared to the 5200 mAh of the Roborock S6, the energy storage of the 360 S7 (3200 mAh) is still significantly smaller. The capacity of the dust container is 570 ml, however, a good 20% larger than that of the opponent.
Alternatively, there is a quieter mode, as well as the more powerful, but also louder Powerful or MAX settings.
The manufacturer specifies a volume of up to 65 dB, which should refer to the MAX mode. The Roborock S6 is a bit quieter on paper with a maximum of 58 dB – at least at the top. In the absence of a test sample, I cannot judge whether the models actually differ so much under real conditions. In any case, I do not find the 360 S7 in “standard” operation to be uncomfortably loud.
Another feature worth mentioning is the Carpet Boost, which should automatically recognize carpets and adjust the suction power accordingly. That worked pretty well for my shag carpet. It takes about 2-3 seconds for the turbo to be activated; after leaving the carpet area, the vacuum cleaner automatically switches back to the preset mode.
I find the decision to put just one side brush on the right a little strange . Xiaomi also does without the Roborock S6 on both sides.
As a test, I dropped a few oatmeal on the floor in the kitchen when the vacuum cleaner was just making its way and unfortunately they were only partially maneuvered towards the intake manifold. The brush kicked a few flakes straight onto the opposite side, which had already been cleaned. A left opponent could certainly have caught the outliers.
In real operation, this did not play a significant role for me, since I do not normally activate the vacuum robot for this and the usual house dust cannot be “snipped” in the form. However, the behavior may be a problem in other households.
I was really impressed by the climbing skills of the 360 S7. The manufacturer states that a height difference of up to 2 cm can be overcome.
Amazingly, the vacuum cleaner even managed to climb the feet of my rocking chairs and to vacuum in between. After all, they are 1.9 to 3.4 cm high. As can be seen in the photo series above, he had once got stuck at the highest point but was able to free himself again with a lot of time and effort.
However, since the hurdle running for several minutes resulted in visible material abrasion on the underbody, this was not a permanent solution. Especially since the likelihood is high that he will get stuck in the end.
If you do not want to put the chairs up every time you vacuum or move them out of the way, you can quickly define a block-off area at the appropriate point, as already mentioned. They can be created and deleted relatively easily.
Another positive thing is that the 360 S7 shows a lot of initiative and tries for a long time to free itself from a deadlock before it stops and calls for help. As a result, most of the runs are completed without annoying manual intervention.
Mopping – wipe with a damp cloth
More and more manufacturers are now equipping their cleaning robots with an additional wiping option. As is known, they have not really been convincing to date. The 360 S7 is no exception.
In principle, the insertable mopping insert works with a water content of 150 ml capacity as expected. The entire surface is wiped evenly with a damp cloth. To improve the cleaning performance, I added 1-2 drops of neutral detergent to the water. But even without mechanical work, of course, it does not help to loosen and remove dried stains or the like.
In addition, the works in the mode Mopping carpet recognition unfortunately not as desired. This is advertised, but since the robot must first move completely onto the flooring that is actually to be avoided for its detection, the feature here is relatively meaningless. So you only have the option of creating a mopping block-off area, which was mentioned at the beginning and within which you can vacuum but not wipe.
Weaknesses and bugs
Of course, you should pay attention to a few basic things, such as cables lying around, when using a vacuum robot. They like to wrap around the main brush and in the best case lead to the vacuum cleaner being switched off, in the worst to a destroyed lamp or the like.
Another annoying topic is the sun. In our test for the RoboVac 15C MAX, I had already given enough information to the confusing behavior of the robot in direct or indirect sunlight. The 360 S7 cannot be operated sensibly in sunny weather and when the curtains are raised.
The cones of light falling through the window are viewed as obstacles in some way – presumably by the drop sensors due to the hard contrast. There are also obvious problems with general navigation if the mother of all light sources floods the room.
So far nothing unusual.
However, the app or the communication of the robot with it also causes problems from time to time and it is truly not possible to blame it on technical or sensory limitations.
So far there have been no interruptions during operation. However, if the household helper has been in the charging station for a while and you want to send him back to work after 1-2 days, it occasionally happens that he simply no longer reacts and an error message is output instead. With a little luck, a complete shutdown of the app will help; 2-3 times I had to restart the vacuum cleaner myself.
There was also a rather annoying bug when calling up the saved maps, which could be displayed under “Select Map” but could not be loaded. It took several days for the bug to be fixed. If the data had simply been stored locally on the robot … we already had the topic.
All in all, the app is stable, but not as reliable as you might expect from a 400 euro robot vacuum. I hope that 360 software and possibly the server-side will still improve.
Conclusion on the 360 S7
On the feature side, 360 offers with the S7 an absolute state-of-the-art vacuum robot, with high performance, accurate SLAM (localization and mapping) using LIDAR, a wall sensor that ensures that edges and furniture are largely touch-free and extensive setting options in the app.
With regard to cleaning performance, there are also a few points that could be criticized. Raised carpets and even hurdles of 2 cm or more are no obstacle for the vacuum robot. On the other hand, mopping should not be seen as a serious alternative to wiping. Only the design decision to do without the left side brush is questionable.
The most important shortcoming is the software, which is not really mature and the concerns about data protection that cannot be ignored if you consider once again which functionally unnecessary permissions the app initially requires. In addition, at least the floor plans of the apartment are uploaded to servers that are not subject to western data protection rules.
In summary, I can give a limited purchase recommendation for the around 350 Euro expensive 360 S7, provided that you can live with the fact that the app is actually still partially in beta.