SeedMaster will soon sell a tablet that is designed to help producers seed better.
The company’s Axis Tablet comes with apps and capabilities that will help growers calibrate, monitor and service their seeders.
Tim Ottenbreit, who assists with product development at SeedMaster, said the company developed the tablet to be user friendly and help producers be more efficient during seeding.
“It’s a nice eight inch touch screen pre-loaded with different apps, some of which we created,” Ottenbreit told the recent Farm Forum Event in Saskatoon.
“It comes with a mount and all the necessary tools to keep it charged.”
The tablet has a Windows 10 operating system and can be used to surf the internet and check email.
Remote access of the tablet is possible so that SeedMaster em-ployees can help farmers while in the field. It also allows technicians to update the tractor’s Isobus remotely.
“The only way to put new software onto an Isobus ECU is via computer, so we can log in and you can plug the computer to the machines’ Isobus and we can go in and update that ECU remotely.”
The tablet comes with software that allows up to eight wireless cameras to be monitored.
“All you need to do is put power and ground anywhere on your machine,” Ottenbreit said.
“It’s easy to install and use. All you have to do is install the camera.”
The cameras are high definition, have infrared ability, come with a heavy-duty magnet for installation and have a range of up to 60 metres.
In early 2016, the tablet will be available with a five- camera package that the company will sell through its dealer network.
Seedmaster has installed some of its own apps on the device, such as a two part rate calculator app.
One part of the app allows producers to calculate a seed rate, how many pounds of seed are required and the overall seed cost.
It also has a cal weight estimator that provides an estimated calibration number for the product being metered.
Producers can input their product, tank model and width of the tool bar, and the app will provide the cal weight to use when calibrating the seeder.
“What it will do is spit out an estimated cal weight, so rather than trying to guess at what the cal weight is, or looking back in your notebook from last year, we have it built right in,” Ottenbreit said.
SeedMaster has included an app that allows producers to find and watch video tutorials on machine operations.
PDF copies of manuals for SeedMaster products are stored on the tablet, “so if you have two SeedMaster machines from different years, you can look up each on the tablet,” he said.
A digital media app includes preloaded farm news websites, a calculator, calendar and a map app in which operators can enter directions and use as a navigation tool.
Producers can use a weather app to monitor changing weather conditions in their area.
Internet service can be provided by installing an SD card, using a cellphone hot spot or using SeedMaster’s Raven Slingshot feature, which provides high-speed connectivity with cell technology through a wi-fi signal to the cab.
SeedMaster will test its new SmartFill feature this spring, which it intends to integrate into the tablet.
SmartFill will regulate conveyor output based on a conveyor load feedback sensor and automatically close truck gates or trailer chutes when the air seeder bin reaches a predetermined weight.
“With our conveyer, we are going to have some predetermined positions where we can get that conveyer to move to a spot, so when you’re jumping out of the cab, hit a button and the conveyer is going to start moving and it will be to a predetermined spot,” Ottenbreit said.
SmartFill will work with Seedmaster’s BinMaster app, an inventory tracker that helps operators keep track of what product has been applied into which field.
More information will be available on Seedmaster’s website in early 2016 at seedmaster.ca.