Farmers Embrace Smartphones

Farmers across the country are finding creative ways to use mobile technology to increase their profits and increase efficiency.

Farming and agricultural production in the US currently exists in two different forms in the minds of many Americans. On the one hand, production has becoming increasingly mechanized and industrialized, with large-scale agribusinesses concentrating their production power and embracing new forms of farm chemicals and genetic engineering to maximize profits and production.

On the other hand, many Americans remain enamored with a bucolic image of American farmers, as was seen in Dodge’s Super Bowl ad featuring a 1978 speech by Paul Harvey.

This nostalgic image has little grounding in reality for a business savvy farm sector that see technology as an important way to boost profits. The most recent technological trend many farmers are embracing is the development of smartphones and mobile devices.

Tracking devices in iPads can be used to monitor automated farm equipment, preventing collisions and accidents that could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Smartphones can deliver information about crop markets in an instant and mysterious weeds or pests can be looked up immediately.

According to some estimates, about 94 percent of farmers currently a smartphone or mobile phone, up from fifty percent just last year and ten percent in 2010.

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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer