If you thought programming your old video cassette recorder (VCR) was difficult, Fujitsu Ltd. has added another twist by creating a robot that can operate home remote controls by accepting commands input from a cellphone.

Fujitsu announced Monday it had developed the MARON-1, a vacuum cleaner shaped guard robot with powered wheels and rotating cameras for eyeballs, which it hopes to begin selling within a year for around 200 000 yen (1600 dollars).

The robot can memorize the infrared signals from remote controls and send them back to the devices based on commands given from a mobile phone.