Many New Options For In-Cab Displays

Trimble

Last year was marked by vast innovation in the in-cab computing realm, with many top manufacturers trotting out advanced and updated capabilities for the snazzy, “teched-up” retailer. It appears that 2012 will go down as the year of the software upgrade. Take Topcon Precision Agri­culture (TPA), for example. In the past year, the company rolled out its System 350, an in-cab precision ag control system featuring the all-in-one, 12.4-inch multi-touchscreen X30 console. Mike Gomes, TPA director of marketing, says: “Topcon’s System 350 sets the industry standard for performance in virtually every conceivable area of precision farming operations.”

Helping the company maintain that so-called “industry standard” is its latest software update, Version v3.07.24. In addition to providing the X30’s standard high accuracy autosteering feature, detailed job summary reports for data tracking and multi-guideline settings (straight, adaptive curve and center pivot), the update bestows the following advanced capabilities upon users:

  • Swather vehicle support with the Topcon AES-25 electric steering system, GPS drift compensation.
  • Boundary creation from a shapefile.
  • ISO file server.
  • ISO XML taskdata data exchange.

Just as Topcon updated its X30 software package, so did Leica Geosys­tems. Back in March, the company released additional features for its mojoMINI and mojo3D guidance systems to further enhance usability and compatibility.

The touchscreen of the mojoMINI has undergone several modifications. It offers now two lightbar modes: The traditional cross track only lightbar; and the Leica smart lightbar. Growers are able to choose the use of WAAS and EGNOS satellite constellations or to deactivate them, if desired. Also, the added support for kml files gives users of the mojoMINI the ability to export data of their most recent work for viewing in Google Earth or import that data into a mojo3D.

The company has also linked steering between the mojo3D and the Leica Twist, which allows the steering of all Leica SteerDirect kits which are supported by the Leica mojoXact. To enable these extra steering options, a mojo3D SteerDirect kit is required.

“We are pleased to introduce more open formats to further ensure the cross compatibility of our products,” says Peter Roberts, Leica’s global R&D manager. “The positive market response we receive because of the fact that we support open formats, like open correction formats, open data formats and open steering protocols extensively, reflects the need for flexible and versatile solutions.”

Leica is also planning additional releases for mid-year, including an online service to monitor farm equipment as well as a new base station.

Synchronicity

Just as Leica is busy streamlining its in-cab computing options, an innovation from Trimble is making it easier for growers to synchronize different vehicles in the field. Vehicle Sync provides vehicle-to-vehicle communication for the Trimble FmX integrated display. Vehicle Sync is particularly valuable during planting season, says the company, as it allows operators in the same field to transfer guidance lines and coverage maps wirelessly between their FmX displays. This functionality helps to reduce overlap and speed up planting jobs.

“The introduction of Vehicle Sync data communication in the FmX integrated display will save operators time while in the field and provide efficiency during the busy planting season,” says Erik Arvesen, vice president for Trimble’s Agriculture division.

Besides allowing operators to share guidance lines between multiple vehicles, Vehicle Sync also goes hand-in-hand with Trimble’s latest initiative, Connected Farm. This Trimble offering is an integrated operations management solution that combines hardware and software to increase operations management efficiency. End users that own a DCM 300 Modem in the cab with Vehicle Sync technology can add-on Connected Farm for a relatively low price and “move up to the next level, which is automating that data transmission between the farm field and farm office,” says Micah Eidem, Trimble market manager.

John Deere is also touting improved in-cab displays with the company’s GreenStar3 (GS3) 2630 Display. It features upgraded capabilities for 2012, led by the recently released Remote Display Access and Machine Sync updates.

Remote Display Access functionality allows for real-time remote display access in the cab. The grower can designate who will have access to view any GS3 2630 Displays in the field to assist in setup, adjustments and troubleshooting, or if necessary, from any remote location using JDLink. This feature is designed to save valuable time and can mitigate some service calls, even from miles away.

“Remote Display Access is a proficient tool and is a direct result of listening to what our customers’ needs are and making it happen,” says David Mulder, product manager for John Deere Ag Management Solutions (AMS). “Besides saving a drive out to the field, a grower or a John Deere dealer is able to remotely assist an operator immediately with setup or troubleshooting, saving time and fuel during the entire growing season.”

As for the Machine Sync option, John Deere Representative Holly A. Brokaw says that “machine-to-machine communication will automate the most challenging harvest functions, allow unloading on-the-go and deliver ease-of-use for operators by enabling your combine and grain cart tractor to communicate speed, GPS and unloading-on-the-go logistics that are perfectly harmonized.”

Just as John Deere introduced its Machine Sync option in response to grower and retailer feedback, TeeJet Tech­nologies also added customer-centric capabilities to its Ma­trix Pro display, starting with new screen display settings and the FieldWare Link PC app.

“The additional screen display setting allows for enhanced viewing in bright conditions and provides the user with another display option,” says Tim Stuenkel, TeeJet global marketing communications manager. “The FieldWare Link app allows the user to more easily store, manage and retrieve field maps and job data. Additionally, boundaries and guidelines can be saved and reused for repeat applications on the same field saving the operator time and effort.

“The need to be able to save and reuse guidelines/field boundaries and better manage map data was a common request from both growers and retailers,” he continues. “We are excited to offer this additional functionality and have made it available to all Matrix owners to download for free. Thus far, feedback has been very positive and the enhancements offered by FieldWare Link, in particular, have been well received by users.”

Cross-Platform Capabilities

Meanwhile, Ag Leader Technologies is currently highlighting its Versa display system, released in November of last year, which includes year-round precision tools, such as guidance, autosteering control, planter control, application control, yield monitoring and mapping, in a large, full color 8.4-inch touchscreen package.

Ag Leader is marketing the Versa as either an economical stand-alone in-cab system or as a second display to switch between multiple vehicles.

One of the main benefits in implementing the Versa system is the cross-platform capabilities it offers. “Whether you are a loyalist with a complete matching set of same-colored field equipment or you’ve got a multi-colored equipment shed, the Versa display will work with your equipment,” says Lori Costello, marketing communications manager for Ag Leader. “In fact, you can even switch it in between equipment of different brands — something that is not always possible with factory-installed precision farming equipment.”

Finally, Raven Industries is excited about the roll out of Onsite, an AgIntegrated product that connects with Raven’s Slingshot Application Interface(API). OnSite is a cloud-based mobile and desktop app that assists with file management and communications to and from the field by socially connecting people. By tapping into the Slingshot API, the OnSite software is able to communicate directly with Raven field computers to efficiently transfer data and locate equipment in the field. OnSite can also connect with a variety of different displays (not just the Slingshot API).

“AgIntegrated’s implementation of OnSite is a great example of the Sling­shot API at work,” says Paul Welbig, director of Slingshot Operations for Raven. “Slingshot provides the wireless connection to the hardware in the field and provides a great connection for AgIntegrated to provide a seamless solution for their customers.”

Another driver of the OnSite system, as well as all of the other products highlighted in this piece, is the increase in adoption of mobile technologies and smart phones within agriculture, a trend that is likely to only grow in the coming years.

“Mobile technologies are enabling the consumer to become the most important asset once again,” says Mike Santostefano, director of marketing and business development for AgIntegrated. “These consumers, including precision ag specialists, salespeople, agronomists, consultants, operators and growers, are the people responsible for adopting and embracing precision agriculture. As seen in other industries, these connected consumers will ultimately drive the need for lower cost, easier to use, integrated systems that make their day more efficient.”

Leave a Reply

Precision Ag Stories

Topcon AGI-4 on MF Planter
EquipmentAutosteer: Compatibility, Accuracy Remain Top Of Mind
July 3, 2015
The world of automatic steering solutions in agriculture has evolved rapidly in the last few years. From after-market add-ons that Read More
Raven Viper 4
Precision AgPrecision Agriculture: In-Cab Computing Adds More Customization, Functionality
June 3, 2015
In terms of in-cab computing solutions for the agriculture market, companies like Case IH, Topcon, Trimble, John Deere and Raven Read More
AgEagle UAV
Precision Ag2015 Precision Agriculture Dealer Survey: Top Four Trends To Watch
June 1, 2015
Editor’s note: The 17th Precision Agriculture Survey was completed with partnerships among the departments of Agricultural Economics and Agronomy at Read More
Retailers
Precision AgThe Human Element Of Precision Agriculture
June 1, 2015
Editor’s note: The 17th Precision Agriculture Survey was completed with partnerships among the departments of Agricultural Economics and Agronomy at Read More
Top 100 Articles
CropLife 100Pinnacle Purchases California-Based Specialty Crops Retailer
July 20, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings has successfully acquired California-based NH3 Service Co.  Operating as part of Pinnacle’s Performance Agriculture brand, the new locations Read More
Asmus Farm Supply liquid fertilizer facility features 20,000 square feet
CropLife 100Slideshow: Asmus Farm Supply Shows Off Its New Liquid Fertilizer Facility
July 15, 2015
Asmus Farm Supply, Rake, IA, recently added a new liquid fertilizer facility to its company operations. The new liquid fertilizer Read More
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis Feed Division Facilities Receive Safe Feed/Safe Food Certification
July 13, 2015
Wilbur-Ellis Co.’s Feed Division, a marketer and distributor of value-added feed ingredients for the aquaculture, livestock and pet food industries Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT Expands To Brazil With Acquisition
July 8, 2015
BRANDT has acquired a majority interest in Target Brasil Fertilizantes Ltda. through its Brazilian subsidiary. Target Brasil manufactures, distributes and Read More
Milan Kucerak, president/CEO, West Central
CropLife 100West Central Cooperative And Its New President Are A Match Made In Deviation
June 29, 2015
To appreciate just how unique West Central Cooperative is in the world of ag retail, an observer need only consider Read More
Winter Wheat
CropLife 100South Dakota Co-op Member Owners Vote No On Unification
June 26, 2015
The Boards of Directors for North Central Farmers Elevator (NCFE) and Wheat Growers (WG) have announced that member-owners have voted Read More
Latest News
StewardshipOhio Water Quality Project To Determine How Much Phosph…
July 27, 2015
Researchers with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University are looking for farmers in Read More
FertilizerKoch Agronomic Services Launches N-TEGRATION Technology
July 27, 2015
Koch Agronomic Services, LLC (KAS) has launched  N-TEGRATION Technology, a process technology platform designed to enable production of enhanced efficiency fertilizers at Read More
HerbicidesExpert: IARC Herbicide Classifications Leading To Confu…
July 24, 2015
Few people in the crop protection industry had heard of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) before this Read More
ManagementFCI Trade Summit Update & Precision Tank Turns 50
July 23, 2015
Editors Dave Frabotta and Eric Sfiligoj discuss the upcoming FCI Trade Summit in Las Vegas, NV, and how Precision Tank Read More
Palmer pigweed seedhead in cotton
HerbicidesUSDA Deregulates Dow AgroSciences’ Enlist Cotton Trait
July 23, 2015
The USDA today issued its decision deregulating Dow AgroSciences’ Enlist cotton trait in the U.S. The USDA has now completed its Read More
Industry NewsVerdesian Life Sciences Showcases Versatile Product Por…
July 23, 2015
Technology has revolutionized agriculture by bringing farmers, retailers and distributors to the forefront of the digital age. To meet the Read More
FertilizerWSJ: Cf Industries Exploring Merger With Dutch Chemical…
July 23, 2015
U.S. fertilizer maker CF Industries is in advanced merger talks with Amsterdam-listed chemical company OCI NV, the Wall Street Journal Read More
HerbicidesNufarm Releases New Panther SC Herbicide
July 23, 2015
Nufarm has announced the availability of new Panther SC herbicide. Panther SC is the first liquid formulation of flumioxazin available Read More
EquipmentFarmLink Launches Farm Equipment Sharing Program
July 23, 2015
FarmLink has introduced a new online farm equipment sharing community – MachineryLink Sharing – leveraging this new economy business model Read More
HerbicidesCould The South’s Most Troublesome Weed Represent A Thr…
July 22, 2015
Palmer amaranth is undoubtedly the most troublesome weed in the southern United States, taking a devastating toll on both cotton Read More
Industry NewsH.J. Baker Hires New Director Of International Sales
July 22, 2015
Global Agriculture firm H.J. Baker announced today that Steve Langley has joined the company’s Crop Performance Division and Animal Health Read More
InsecticidesSyngenta Recommends Soybean Scouting To Prevent Economi…
July 22, 2015
Proper soybean insect pest control begins with scouting. As the warm weather continues, Syngenta encourages growers to implement a scouting Read More
Crop InputsH.J. Baker Launches Fall Sulphur Campaign
July 22, 2015
H.J. Baker has launched their “Keep Your Future Green – Use Tiger This Fall and Win Big” campaign. The campaign Read More
Central Valley Ag Randolph, NE
Retail FacilitiesStueve Construction Builds Fifth Facility For Central V…
July 21, 2015
Central Valley Ag partnered with Stueve Construction Co. to successfully design and build its Monroe, Oakland, Wakefield and Royal hub facilities Read More
FertilizerNew Research Could Lead To Less Reliance On Nitrogen, E…
July 21, 2015
Farmers often are required to apply nitrogen fertilizers to their crops to maintain quality and improve yields. Worldwide, farmers used Read More
Seed/BiotechMonsanto Targets Farmers, AFBF In Syngenta Takeover
July 21, 2015
As Monsanto Co. struggles to convince rival Syngenta AG to discuss a potential merger, the seed and agrochemical giant is Read More
CHS Building exterior
Retail FacilitiesSackett Helps CHS Expand Blending Facility, Improve Acc…
July 21, 2015
CHS needed a blend plant that could vastly expand their capabilities in St. Charles, MN. The A.J. Sackett & Sons Read More
Industry NewsH.J. Baker Adds To HR Team
July 21, 2015
H.J. Baker announced today that Barbara Sullivan has joined the company’s executive team as Vice President of Human Resources. Prior Read More