How to benefit from connected devices on your farm

A growing number of farmers are using the internet of things (IoT) to save time, increase production and reduce costs. So, what is IoT and how can you benefit from using IoT solutions and connected devices in your operation?

What is IoT?

IoT is any network of connected devices that sends information to a data-processing platform in the cloud.

“If you have a smart TV or an Apple Watch, for instance, you’re already using a type of this technology,’’ says Susan-Cooly-Pottier,’ Senior Product Manager, Agriculture, TELUS Business. “IoT can give you insights or information automatically. It makes life easier and helps you make stronger decisions.’’  

IoT, or connected devices, can give you real-time data on soil and crop conditions, equipment performance, worker location, fertilizer uptake, livestock health and much more. And you can access your platform from just about anywhere in the world.

Where do I begin?

An on-farm weather station is a great place to start building your IoT solution library. Prairie weather can change on a dime and vary across a few kilometres. Accurate, site-specific forecasts can help you plan the day’s field activities or make data-driven decisions on irrigation or crop management.

“Even a simple connected weather station can gather all your meteorological information and process it,’’ says Cooly-Pottier. “You wake up in the morning and just check your phone.’’

Manage assets, inventory and commodities

 IoT for farm equipment uses telematics to give you remote access to diagnostic platforms in your machinery. Telematics integrates telecommunications and information technology to monitor the performance of your machinery and notify of potential issues. A telematics solution such as farm inventory management notifies you to order more fuel when it detects dwindling supplies. 

IoT can protect your grain bins as well – sensors in grain bins can monitor humidity and automate drying.

Increase inputs efficiency

 Your IoT solution can use data to help you build a variable rate nutrient strategy tailored to each of your field zones. A better understanding of what’s going on beneath the surface helps you make smarter decisions on all inputs. You’ll save money while enhancing the sustainability of your land and protecting the environment. 

Safeguard your most valuable assets

Wearable and pocket safety devices can provide peace of mind or accident alerts when you or a worker is operating solo. Choose from a range of options that include check-in/check-out, fall detection notification and emergency help at the push of a button. The devices are interchangeable so you can use them to protect your family in “off-duty’’ hours.

Why IoT?

 Demand for food is growing but, as the old saying goes, no one’s making more land. IoT offers a path forward that uses the power of technology and science to help you increase your productivity, efficiency and sustainability.

Learn more about Decisive Farming by TELUS Agriculture’s suite of connected devices solutions here or reach out to your local Decisive Farming representative today.