This Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019 photo shows an iRobot Terra lawn mower in Bedford, Mass. Building a robot lawn mower seemed the logical next step for iRobot, which invented the pioneering robotic vacuum Roomba. But the company’s secret, decade-plus lawn mower project was a lot harder than anyone expected. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

Where's my robot lawn mower? Roomba-maker now has an answer

January 30, 2019 - 6:59 am

BEDFORD, Mass. (AP) — Building a robot lawn mower seemed the logical next step for iRobot, the company behind the Roomba vacuum robot.

But the Massachusetts company's secret lawn mower project was a lot harder than anyone expected.

Now, iRobot finally has something to show after more than a decade of development. Its first robot lawn mower is called Terra and is being unveiled Wednesday.

IRobot CEO and co-founder Colin Angle says the struggle to build Terra has been an obsessive journey of "despair and frustration."

The mower navigates using technology better known by radio astronomers.

Angle says it was a struggle to build a robot that meets U.S. cultural standards for cutting a perfect lawn. But the robot will first launch in Germany, where there's already a growing market for robotic mowers.

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