The ongoing evolution of precision farming technology was on display at the 2014 Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa. Our Precision Farming Dealer staff spent 2 days traversing the event for cutting-edge farm technology.

Several manufacturers introduced extensions of their data management platforms, taking collection of farm information to the cloud for simpler storage and access.

Manufacturers often mentioned “seamless integration” as the driving force behind creating more robust decision-making data management tools, to include weather forecasting and soil testing, in addition to offering remote service capabilities for dealers or other third parties working with farm customers.

Not to be overshadowed by precision software innovations, several companies unveiled new hardware including refined auto-steering systems, planter controls and tractor cab displays.

Here’s a look at some of the top new technology seen at the show.



Outback Guidance introduced 2 upgrades to its precision steering system with the eDriveXC and eDriveXD. The XD offers 4-6 inch accuracy, while the XC is centimeter-level accuracy. Both units provide versatility for operators to navigate straight, contour and circle pivot steering models. “These improvements allow for single-season return on investment for farmers, at an affordable price,” says Brent Newkirk with Outback.


The Flex Seeder kits introduced by Elliott Manufacturing and Precision Ag Technologies are now available as an aftermarket product to replace chain and sprocket drives on existing planters. The Flex Seeder features an individual on/off control system for precise planting and to help eliminate skips and double-planting. The Flex Seeder system is easy to install and is maintenance free.




Seeing a customer need for a mid-level touchscreen display, Topcon launched the X25 console, which features an 8-inch color screen and a complement to the company’s larger X30 display and entry-level X14 console. All three systems run through the Horizon software platform. The X25 is catered to the price conscious farmer, according to Topcon’s Michael Stone, and allows for future upgrades.

“In some smaller cabs, the 8-inch screen is a more ideal fit, but there is also opportunity to grow into a larger model with new or different machinery,” he says.


Trimble Navigation unveiled its Connected Farm Field, an extension of the precision manufacturer’s data management services platform. The Field application lets farmers access real-time field information during planting, spraying or harvesting, along with precise tracking of rainfall through the new RainWave Contour Maps. “Instead of 1 gauge in the field, farmers can get accurate readings across their entire field and make immediate decisions on needed field operations,” says Mike Martinez with Trimble.




Ag Leader launched its new Hydraulic Down Force 8-Section Control, with row-by-row sensing to measure down force on variable soils and adjust seed depth accordingly. Unique to the system is the stress minimizing accumulator, which serves as a cushion to accept 100% of the actuator’s fluid capacity. “This acts as a shock absorber if the operator hits a rock in the field and reduces the stress on the row units for a smoother ride,” says Alex Lundgren with Ag Leader.