We must admit, when we saw the following story, we thought it was someone taking the mickey. But no, it's real. You can now use an umbrella that charges your brolly and boosts your signal. Word.
Courtesy of Vodafone, it's called the Booster Brolly, it's been developed by a rather clever boffin from UCL who goes by the name of Dr Kenneth Tong.
Here's how it works: there are 12 hand-stitched silicon solar cells on top which charge a battery that is stored in the handle. You plug your phone into the USB port on said handle and it'll charge your mobile in around three hours whilst two high gain antennae stuffed up top keep you fully connected and give your signal a bit of welcome boost.
First things first though, it's not on sale - yet. It's going to be unveiled later this month at the Isle of Wight festival where we can see it going down like hotcakes. In fact, if you're going to Glastonbury, this could be a godsend as it will also stop you getting wet.
The downside is, if you use this, you're going to look you work for Vodafone and you'll have paid for the privilege. We're also slightly dubious about its reliability.
Yep, it sounds good in practice but there is always the scope for the inside of the umbrella to get water in it as can so easily happen. Will that handle be waterproof? Will that battery be able to cope with moisture? We're sure they're things Vodafone and University College London have thought of but we can't help worrying, as we do.