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Kobi Introduces 3-In-1 Robot That Mows Grass, Cleans Leaves And Shoves Snow

By J Russ I. , Oct 15, 2016 02:38 AM EDT
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A new innovation on robotics is going to make life easier for people who have trouble maintaining their lawn. A New-York based company is developing a robot, called Kobi, that can mow grass, blow leaves, and shovel snow out of a driveway.

The company's co-founders, Andrew Ewen and Steven Waelbers, said they met each other while working at a financial institution at Belgium. Waelbers works at a bank and builds robots in his spare time, while Ewen is an accomplished entrepreneur with years of sales and marketing under his belt, according to ZDNet.

Kobi Creators Came Up With The Robot Over A Beer

Kobi's inception began when the two were having a casual conversation over a beer. Their talk drifted lazily to Waelber's dad and how his old man has been pestering him to stop building drones and invent a robot that could help push snow out his driveway instead.

"I already have a robot that I used for something else, so I quickly turned it into a machine that cleans the snow," said Waelber. Ewen then convinced Waelber to turn his hobby into a business and the two eventually began the startup company, which now employs several engineers.

Kobi is the company's first product, a 3-in-1 autonomous robot that can easily switch from cutting grass, blowing leaves, and removing snow. "We made sure that the process of changing the modules would be extremely easy, to the point where even a 5-year-old child could do it," Waelbers said.

The 3-in-1 Robot Is Safe And Environmentally Friendly

While this invention may not appeal to others, there are people out there who may need the product. It goes without saying that yard work is tedious work, not to mention dangerous.

Rotating blades can easily result in accidents and shoveling snow has caused people to suffer heart attacks in the past. Kobi's creator said that safety has been one of the main issues that they prioritized, even claiming that the robot far safer than traditional lawn equipment.

"We've done risk analysis and it turns out that the chance of an accident happening is very low," Waelbers said. Kobi is equipped with sensors and GPS for navigation; has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and mobile data connectivity allowing owners to communicate with the robot through smartphones, and is able to monitor weather forecasts so that it can catch the earliest signs of snow even before a storm begins.

Kobi's Features Are Top-Of-The-Line

The sensors will also help the robot stay within instructed boundaries and the built-in camera and ultrasonic sensors will help it detect obstacles, including pets and people. And since Kobi is battery powered, it's environmentally-friendly as opposed to conventional lawn mowers, which the Environmental Protection Agency said is contributing five percent of the air pollution in the U.S.

Kobi can handle most yard work in a single charge. Owners will have to guide the machine around their property to orient the machine of the area that it will cover and prevent it from step onto incoming traffic, according Recode

Unfortunately, Kobi will not be on the market until next year. On late December, 10 consumers will receive the beta version of the robot and their feedback will be used to make final improvements to Kobi's design before being available to the general masses by 2017 with a price tag of $4,000.

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