Now playing: Watch this: Watch this giant robotic arm shield the sun

I love being outside, but direct sunlight can be kind of annoying. Fortunately, Los-Angeles-based robotics startup ShadeCraft has come up with a seriously cool solution -- the Sunflower.

The Sunflower is an autonomous patio umbrella/shade that has a ridiculous amount of tech packed into it, all designed to keep you comfortable no matter the outdoor conditions. ShadeCraft says the Sunflower won't be ready until 2018, but here's a list of its promised smarts:

  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
  • Solar-powered
  • Built-in security camera
  • Integrated lighting
  • Built-in sensors
  • Related SmartShade app for Android and iPhone

While we've seen all sorts of cool one-off products and ideas expand into bigger trends -- Amazon Echo ($55 at Amazon), anyone? -- we haven't seen anything quite like Sunflower before. It certainly seems like a clever way to manage the sun, but we'll just have to see it for ourselves. We're tracking down Sunflower here at CES for hands-on photos and video, so check back soon.

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