November 8, 2013 06:55 PM

AGCO Fuses Tech Integration

The word "fuse" means binding two or more things together, so it’s appropriate that AGCO is
using the word as a rallying cry for a new company initiative. AGCO announced a global strategy called Fuse Technologies, which intends to provide farmers with seamless integration and connectivity across their machinery.

As the strategy evolves, Fuse Technologies will focus on an open approach to technology
integration. That will allow connections to existing service providers and software that are already in use, says Matt Rushing, AGCO vice president of product management.

Specifically, Fuse Technologies will encompass the following:

  • Equipment across all of the AGCO brands
  • Both on- and off-board tech­nologies
  • Support and training
  • Dealer network
  • Service providers

"Fuse Technologies will encompass all of AGCO’s core product brands, enable a deeper integration with our technology suppliers and impact all stages of the farming life cycle from enterprise planning, planting and seed growth to application, harvesting and grain storage," Rushing says.

New App Available for Nutrient ID

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Yara’s new crop production app—CheckIT—will help farmers with the visual identification of crop nutrient deficiencies. The app includes data and pictures of 20 crops and their most common nutrient deficiencies. Once the specific deficiency is selected, the app also provides the corresponding nutritional advice for farmers to correct the problem.

CheckIT is free to download and is compatible with Apple, Android and Windows smartphones and tablets.

Raven’s High-Flying, Wireless Adventure


Google wants to bring wireless Internet access to the entire Earth—and it needs agriculture’s help to do so.

The technology titan has tapped Raven Industries Inc. to deliver high-altitude balloons that carry specialized radio frequency technology for Project Loon.

Raven designed and developed the balloons, which are 60' tall and can fly at an altitude of 66,000', above airplanes and weather. The balloons can be remotely positioned and moved as needed. As Google explains: "People connect to the balloon network using a special Internet antenna attached to their building. The signal bounces from balloon to balloon, then to the global Inter­net back on Earth."

The project is still in early testing, kicked off by a successful June trial run in New Zealand, where a network of 30 balloons provided Internet service to about 6,200 sq. miles.

"We’re still in the early stages with more testing ahead, but working very closely with Google, we expect over the next few years to make additional engineering advances and support production as the pilot project explores expanding to other countries," says Lon Stroschein, vice president and general manager of Raven Aerostar. For more information, visit

Trimble Announces Water Buys

Trimble announces two acquisitions—RainWave LLC and Hydro-Engineering Solutions LLC. Both acquisitions will help the company better monitor and report precipitation with its Connected Farm solution.

RainWave provides precipitation monitoring services and data that helps farmers better manage their crop production. Farmers can set up a virtual rain gauge by entering GPS coordinates for identified locations and receive customized rainfall reports without using on-site rain gauges.

Hydro-Engineering Solutions specializes in hydraulics. Trimble acquired the company for its expertise in watershed analysis for drainage and irrigation. Joe Denniston, vice president of Trimble’s agriculture division, describes the moves as "deliberate."

"Managing your water use is as important as ever," he says. "This is another area we believe we can bring a technical solution to lower farmer costs and increase output."

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