A North Texas lawn care company has “employed” 50 robotic lawnmowers to cut their clients’ grass. The startup company, called Robin, expects to deploy 50 to 100 more every month.
According to Co-Founder and CEO Justin Crandall, “We’ve been running a lawn care business for the last 2 years. It’s grown very quickly to 6,000 customers. We see this as an opportunity to create a more reliable experience for our customers.”
Bart Lomont, co-founder and VP of operations asserted, “Robots are cool! People love them.”
Lomont added, “Mowing the lawn is done with a machine. It’s been done with a machine since the lawn mower was invented. We’re taking the last piece, the human element out of it.”
According to Lomont, allowing a robot to cut the grass allows crews to work with their hands, and use their skills completing other elements of lawn care.
One of Robin’s newest customers, Patrick McGregor, said that he was on board with the new technology if it keeps his lawn looking freshly-cut. “I’m not quite getting inside the shower getting my teeth brushed for me robotically,” he joked. “I don’t have to worry about it. It’s going to do the job on its own. That’s huge.”
The lawn-mowing robots are similar to Roomba vacuum cleaners in that they move in a random pattern. Fences are sensed by the mowers just as walls are by the vacuum. “When the robot is approaching your flower beds or the street, it knows it’s coming close to the wire, so it won’t run into the street,” Lomont said.
Several robot mowers were stolen when Robin initially introduced them into their lawn care service. The company has since equipped the machines with GPS trackers and stickers warning would-be thieves that they will be prosecuted.
Europe has popularized robotic lawn mower technology, but it is slowly catching on in the United States—likely due to the $1,500 to $4,000 cost for the machines.
As for the service, McGregor said that the price for robotic lawn care turned out to be similar to what he has paid for traditional mowing.
Robin offers plans starting at $99 a month for the mower only, plus an installation fee. The company also offers packages that include humans who do the detail work such as edging and weeding.
The following demonstration video we found summarizes all the pros and cons, and proves a lawn may still look better with a mower that requires a human in charge.
H/T: CBS DFW
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