With yet another autonomous lawnmower rolling out this year, manual mowing looks to be going the way of the antique gershunters coupling hook and iron dibber (warning: photos of old farming tools contained in this link may give you nightmares).
The latest entrant to the field of mowers that let you read a novel while your lawn tidies itself up is the SmartMow by RoboLabs. A kind of Roomba for lawns, the robo-mower moves in a circular pattern within an installed perimeter wire to cut the grass. As an anti-theft measure, you need to activate the device with a security key.
The SmartMow, which runs on a lithium ion battery, measures approximately 21 inches by 27 inches by 8 inches and weighs 17 pounds. It can cover about 3,230 square feet (operating for two to three hours) on one four-hour charge and can tackle slopes up to 30 degrees.
But the SmartMow doesn't totally let you off the hook when it comes to garden labor. Just as iRobot suggests you clear your carpets and floors of excess debris before starting up the Roomba or Scooba, RoboLabs recommends clearing your yard of any sticks and debris the gadget may run over.
The mower ships in March for $999.99, with RoboLabs currently offering 25 percent off on preorders.