It’s hard to quantify tech trends at a major farm show in just three days. Here are some factors gelling this year that you’ll want to roll into your buying plans for 2014 when it comes to electronics.
First, wireless data transfer has become the baseline for major services seeking to compete for your dollar. Ag Leader, for example, has launched its AgFiniti platform, which piggybacks on your existing cellphone or data card connection (using a special antenna that fits into one of two consoles) to move information from machine to cloud.
The company notes that its new service is like the popular file-exchange service DropBox, yet it is proprietary to Ag Leader and works with its equipment. Cost for the AgFiniti service is $295 per year with 2 gigabytes of storage. The Wi-Fi antenna also costs $295.
John Deere has made significant enhancements to its MyJohnDeere service, a Web-based platform that allows farmers to access their information from anywhere they have an Internet connection. The entire system — called FarmSight — uses myjohndeere.com as the access point for the information.
Second, companies are making acquisitions to enhance what they offer. Trimble announced a few moves at the Farm Progress Show, including purchase of RainWave and IQ Irrigation.
RainWave offers precise, remote rainfall management, allowing farmers to place “sensors” at any field location.
IQ Irrigation is a New Zealand company that provides centralized control of both linear and pivot irrigation systems, and is compatible with a range of existing control boxes on the market.
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