Smartphone Tools for Farmers
Within the past year smartphone app developers have been creating and experimenting with both iPhone and Android platforms for farm-use applications.
Seed to Harvest is an iPhone app geared toward the organic farmer, designed as an intensive record-keeping tool. Farmers can use it to keep track of transplant and harvest dates, soil amendments, and sales records by cultivar and location. Information is stored on the device itself in the case of limited internet access in the field.
The USDA has also initiated a suite of agricultural apps this year, including the Save Our Citrus app, designed to identify and share relevant information to deter the spread of citrus diseases.
Researchers at Penn State University have created an app for dairy farmers to assist in financial planning and calculate feed costs and other expenses. Called DairyCents, the app may be a good tool in the future for sourcing better priced feed, and referencing calculations from other farmers around the country.
The Government of South Australia’s AgExcellence Alliance has compiled a list of farm-pertinent apps, which includes many that provide US-based information. Currently, many apps are designed exclusively for Apple platforms, though this will likely expand to include more Android-OS based software as such technology gains an audience.