Technology editor Ben Potter brings you the latest in technology news, and how you can apply it to farming.
The New Norm for Farm Communication [Infographic]
Sep 04, 2012
Thirty years ago, the personal computer was a pipe dream; now it’s the norm. Next in line are mobile/smartphone devices, which have nearly saturated the farming landscape, according to a new study by Float Mobile Learning. The study showed that nearly 19 in 20 farmers own a mobile phone or smartphone.
"The trend in North America is to larger farms, increasing automation, and striving for greater efficiencies," says Float senior analyst Gary Woodill. "Mobile technologies will turn agriculture into more of an information business, as precision farming, geolocation data and access to immediate market information all become important."
Here are some key insights from the study:
• Smartphone adoption among American farmers jumped from 10 percent in 2010 to 40 percent by mid-2011.
• In a survey of 60 mobile agriculture apps available in North America, 33 percent could be classified as farm management apps.
• Emerging market farmers’ incomes could rise by $138 billion due to mobile computing and communications services.
• One million rural households have broadband Internet access at home solely through wireless broadband services.
• Wider application of precision agriculture could reduce water usage by up to 50 percent.
"Learning with smartphones and tablets may be the only way to get just-in-time information to these professionals when they are on the road or in the fields," says Float’s managing director, Chad Udell.
Click here for an infographic that details additional insights about how farmers are using mobile technology on their operations.