iRobot, the maker of the Roomba vacuum, announced its first autonomous lawnmower today, the Terra. While most autonomous lawn mowers require people to lay down wire to define their boundaries, the Terra only requires wireless beacons to be placed around the perimeter of a lawn — the idea being it’s a simpler setup. Users will also have to drive the mower around their lawn once using a companion app to teach it where to go and where to avoid.
The Terra has an hour of runtime and takes about two hours to charge fully, iRobot says. If it runs out of battery mid-route, it’ll go back to its charger and pick up where it left off. It’s completely weatherproof and is designed to live outdoors. It features two modular shears and spring technology so that if the blades hit a rock or something else that’s hefty, they bounce back and don’t snap. It also has a bumper on the front to help avoid a destroyed bot.
The connected app also lets users define a grass height and make adjustments as needed. People can use it to monitor the mower’s schedule and route, too. The Terra pairs over Wi-Fi, but iRobot wouldn’t explain how it intends to deal with potentially poor signal in users’ yards.