You may be famliar with different solar beach umbrellas. They harvest solar energy and help recharge your phones and other gadgets. But what about a highly autonomous robotic beach umbrella that tracks the sun? Here it is, the ShadeCraft Sunflower umbrella. It was first previewed at CES 2017.
The high-tech beach umbrella is from a start-up, ShadeCraft. The Pasadena, California-based firm aims to improve human life outdoors with innovative robotic products. Sunflower was, of course, its first project, which, as per the company, brought technology and the Internet Of Things (IoT) together in a stylish way.
Its recent product is a solar-based hi-tech table, Suntable. That features the Wi-Fi and JBL music system.
The great thing, however, with the robotic “sunshade” is that it integrates a music system and a surveillance camera. Moreover, it connects to your home Wi-Fi network and is compatible with your home automation systems, such as Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
Built with Harmon Kardon speakers, it can offer you a good musical experience, and the built-in camera can give security to your properties and home. Overall, the ShadeCraft Sunflower umbrella is more than a fancy beach umbrella. It equips a range of advanced systems and technologies to improve your life outdoors.
Well, all the included systems run on the power from solar panels on top of the umbrella. So, you can place it on a beach or anywhere else with better sunlight. It will adjust its position as the sun moves by guaranteeing you shade always and generating solar energy at its best.
By the way, ShadeCraft Sunflower is a premium product. Of course, it costs hugely to stay under the robotic shade of Sunflower. It was carrying a presale price of $5,220 when it was launched at CES 2017. Since then, it has been reportedly selling at around $8000. Check out its current price on the ShadeCraft website.
ShadeCraft Sunflower Umbrella Specs and Features
Sunflower is indeed a completely automatic system. In the morning, it wakes up, unfolds its petals, and keeps tracking the sun. In the evening, it closes down automatically again. The system gives primary importance to safety as well. The robotic umbrella is designed to close down if there is a high wind or bad weather.
Specs-wise, the whole system works on solar energy, as mentioned above. The integrated solar cells generate and store the power to ensure continuous operation of the robotic beach umbrella even on overcast days.
For connectivity, it features Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and optional cellular plans. The included SmartShade app on iOS, in the meantime, offers you full control of the system on your phone or tablet. Meanwhile, Sunflower sports USB ports to provide juice for your handhelds.
Besides the Bluetooth audio system, it also highlights a controlled lighting option to create an ideal ambiance for your beach life. It integrates some LED panels for that, and you can control them on your phone.
Of course, being a robotic and IoT-based system, it integrates several sensors. They include wind, proximity, and environment sensors to further enhance its usability. By the way, the umbrella has a size of 122 x 88 x 88 inches, and its weight goes 42 lbs. Its base station has a weight of 180 lbs.
Source and Images: ShadeCraft