Roughly $4 billion worth of apples are harvested in the U.S. each year. Startup Abundant Robotics hopes to suck up some of it with a machine that vacuums ripe fruit off the tree. Today apple orchards rely on people to pick their crops.
This signal was also apotted by Ela Rose:
"Abundant Robotics in California has built an automated apple picker which gives farming efficiency, but at the cost of job losses for low skilled workers."
GV (formerly Google Ventures) is leading a $10 million investment in Abundant Robotics, a company building apple-picking robots that could eventually be adapted to harvest other fruits. Joining GV in the round were BayWa AG and Tellus Partners, along with the company's earlier backers Yamaha Motor Company, KPCB Edge and Comet Labs.