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Umbrella drone will follow you and shield you from the elements

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A Japanese plastics company Asahi Power Service have developed a flying umbrella drone called the Free Parasol.

The days of wrangling with your old-fashioned brolly and desperately trying to avoid it being turned inside out by the wind may be a thing of the past. The current iteration of the drone has a 59 inch diameter which is designed to shade consumers from the sun. Future versions of the Free Parasol will be waterproofed and will be capable of handling the rain.

How does it work?

The design is rather simple – it is essentially a DJI Mavic Pro and a standard umbrella. The UAV’s GPS tracks a user’s position and follows them on their journey. It will retail for 30,000 yen ($275) and is intended to operate in environments with lots of open space such as a golf course.

It is not a practical invention for everyday usage through busy cities due to the many hazards the drone would encounter such as powerlines, low-hanging signs and other people.

But what about the incredibly annoying sound?

Yeah … that’s a big problem and really the main stumbling block with this whole idea. A flying umbrella that follows you round is a friggin awesome concept; that is until you hear how loud it is.

If you want a sure-fire way of pissing off everyone around you at all times and driving yourself insane – walking around with a drone emitting a high pitched buzzing noise will do the trick. The company are working on ways to reduce this noise and until they do – this concept is about as useful as a facial mask to keep your hair out of your noodles (see below).

Good old Japan.

Another problem facing the concept is drone battery life or lack thereof. Most of the time when its raining, users don’t want to spend long periods of time outside. That being said, the majority of drone batteries don’t last much longer than 20 minutes. That doesn’t give you much time to walk around. It could be more than a little annoying to be out in a downpour when your drone battery dies and your umbrella drops to the ground.

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