John Deere introduces mobile app for improving planter performance

Feb 21, 2014

—Features include real-time monitoring, documentation, and highdefinition mapping for use on an iPad.

John Deere has kicked off 2014 with a variety of new products, including equipment and even apps, along with their recent announcement that the first quarter, ending Jan. 31, the company was sitting at $681.1 million, or $1.81 per share, compared with $649.7 million, or $1.65 per share for the same period last year.

Worldwide net sales and revenues for the first quarter increased 3 percent, to $7.654 billion, compared with $7.421 billion last year. Net sales of the equipment operations were $6.949 billion for the quarter compared with $6.793 billion a year ago.

“With another record quarter, John Deere has started 2014 on a strong note,” said Samuel R. Allen, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

Earlier this month, the company launched sales of the ExactEmerge row unit for more accurate planting at speeds up to 10 mph and the new industry-leading MaxEmerge 5 row units for planting at traditional speeds. According to the company, customers can now plant with greater speed, accuracy and ease than ever before.

According to Kelby Krueger, Product Specialist, John Deere Seeding Group, the ExactEmerge row units are a perfect fit for producers who want to plant more acres in less time due to narrow planting windows, or to increase the size of their operations without adding equipment. “We know that accurate, timely planting pays off in improved stands and higher yields at harvest,” Krueger says. “Now row-crop producers will have the ability to place seeds at higher operating speeds with even greater accuracy in the field. They will be able to optimize their seed investment, reduce operational costs and generally increase productivity.

This exciting new high-performance system is the most productive planting solution we’ve ever offered.”

Krueger explains that the ExactEmerge features a new, rigid bowl-shaped meter and brush-style doubles eliminator that requires no adjustment. It is designed to provide a smooth, crisp seed handoff to the industry-exclusive brush belt, which replaces the seed tube.

“Another important feature is that our new brush belt does not have to be synchronized with finite meter speeds. The systems are completely independent of each other, allowing the meter to turn at the right speed for the desired seed population, while the delivery system exactly matches ground speed,” explains Krueger. “This careful controlling of each seed from the meter to the trench and then releasing it at the correct rearward velocity allows the gentle placement of each seed in the trench without the normal bounce and roll that would otherwise happen at the higher speeds. We can do this with both corn and even with high-rate soybeans. And because we never let go of the seed until each one is in the trench, we’ve drastically reduced the ill effects of rougher planting conditions.”

This new design also eliminates the long gravity drop and retains the seeds in the brush, eliminating skips in the field when growers start planting from a stop. There will no longer be a need to back up to start planting.

Two 56-volt electric motors per row unit rotate the meter and brush belt independently to achieve the desired seed population with speed matching delivery. The new electric motors are brushless, maintenancefree and engineered to last the life of the average planter.

“For traditional planter customers, John Deere is also introducing an entirely new line of MaxEmerge row units—the MaxEmerge 5. These row units combine the best features of the existing MaxEmerge XP and Pro- Series XP units, which they replace,” explains Krueger.

For more information on the revolutionary new ExactEmerge and MaxEmerge 5 row units from John Deere, visit your local John Deere dealer or visit www.

In conjunction with the launch of the ExactEmerge planters and MaxEmerge 5 row units, John Deere introduced SeedStar Mobile to help producers better visualize, document, and access their planting data in real time. The new mobile app uses an iPad to provide planting information producers need to better monitor and document their planter performance in the field.

According to Mike Brandert, Senior Product Manager at John Deere Intelligent Solutions Group, SeedStar Mobile provides real-time, row-by-row performance data on an iPad inside the tractor cab, in the office, or on the go. “With SeedStar Mobile, producers can instantly monitor planter performance and know with confidence that the planter is running at the highest level of precision and accuracy.”

Depending on the configuration of the planter, the system collects and monitors population, singulation, seed spacing, downforce, variety, and ground speed, on a row-by-row basis. Seed- Star Mobile captures this information and stores it on the iPad by working in conjunction with the GreenSta 3 2630 Display and Seed- Star XP or SeedStar 3 HP on the planter. This information can be used to help optimize planter settings, diagnose potential problems, scout fields, and provide decision support in other areas of the farming operation. SeedStar Mobile also transfers the planting data to the Operations Center in MyJohnDeere while planting in the field or in the producer’s office using Wi-Fi or a cellular connection.

“Producers want to be able to visualize their productivity and effectiveness while planting through high-definition maps, not just see a numerical readout,” says Brandert. “Producers are also asking for more flexibility to access their data. By utilizing SeedStar Mobile on an iPad, it gives producers easy access to their planting data and provides the mobility they need to view the data at any time or place. Also, by sending the data to MyJohn- Deere, it gives producers the ability to synchronize information between mobile devices and share data with trusted agronomic service providers. All of this enables the producer to improve planting performance, increase productivity, and maximize the yield potential of their crops.”

More information will be released in the future about SeedStar Mobile and its availability for the 2015 planting season. — Traci Eatherton, WLJ Editor