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Source: Shadecraft

This Robotic Umbrella Provides Shade While Also Producing Electricity

By Aimee Lutkin

A company called Shadecraft has developed the dream of every beach goer who fears burning to a crisp on the sand—the Sunflower umbrella, the first autonomous robotic shade that senses and moves with the sun.

According to Inhabitat, the umbrella is solar powered, which means you don't have to remember to charge it before heading out to the surf and sand. It can also be used as a charge for your phone and other amenities, as the umbrella stores excess electricity in batteries that can last up to 72 hours.

The 122 by 84 by 84 inch umbrella can tilt 45 degrees and rotate the full 360 degrees on one of its three electric motors. If this were all it could do, that would be enough, but all new gadgetry of course comes with an app, and the Sunflower's app has some pretty amazing capabilities.

Both wifi and Bluetooth enabled, the umbrella can connect to your home and your phone, which means you can control it from afar. Sensors in the umbrella track air quality, the temperature, and the wind. It can sense when things are getting too wild, and closes up to protect itself. Cameras embedded in the technology can be used as part of a home security system, and are capable of filming a 360 panoramic view, which is also great for epic beach selfies.