11 January, 2012
Agricultural leaders have embarked on a
brainstorming session with top communications specialists to
discuss how smartphone applications can help around the farm.
The aim of the event - hosted by T-Mobile - was to raise
awareness about how mobile technologies can improve everyday duties
in the agricultural industry by making processes cheaper, more
manageable and more efficient.
Topics such as security and livestock management - as well as
health/safety matters - were all discussed, as these were
recognised as the areas where technology could help from farmers
throughout the UK the most.
Many practical ideas came out of the session; one of which was
the implementation of QR codes - a scannable, detailed barcode -
that could be sprayed onto a cow's hide to identify its provenance
and vaccination history, reports Farming UK.
Another was an anti-rustling application that would be able to
spot when livestock were on the move. This would be achieved by
placing an infrared camera in the cattle field which detects an
animal's heat signature. Should it move away, its heat signal would
decrease, triggering an alarm to the owner's phone number or other
landowners in the area for example.
Designing technological solutions for the farming industry has
long been overlooked, according to Martin Stiven, vice-president
for business at UK mobile network T-Mobile.
"I think the farming sector is one that high-tech organisations
probably haven't spent as much time on as they could," Stiven
admitted when speaking to BBC News.
However, not implementing the ideas generated at the
brainstorming session would be a missed opportunity for the
industry, he added: "The technology is there, it's about applying
it. And it's about thinking about the particular issues that
farmers have and building those specific applications that will
Source: Vertical Leap