The precision farming software market was valued at USD 797 million in 2018 and is expected to reach USD 1,600 million by 2023.
The precision farming software market is currently in the introductory growth phase and is expected to witness substantial growth in the future, owing to the increasing role of technology, according to a recent report by research company MarketsandMarkets.
The precision farming software market was valued at USD 797 million in 2018 and is expected to reach USD 1,600 million by 2023, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15% during the forecast period.
“Major factors contributing to the growth of the precision farming software market include increasing need for real-time data management through cloud computing, initiatives undertaken by various governments to promote digital farming, increasing adoption of IoT-based smart agriculture, and growing emphasis on increasing farm productivity and profits,” say the reseachers.
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Increasing adoption of precision farming software is driving the market, says MarketsandMarkets: “The software in agriculture can play a vital role in increasing productivity of farm on per acre basis through site-specific management of a farm. Increasing adoption of hardware devices such as smart controllers, drones, GPS, and sensors in farms enables farmers or growers to take corrective actions at the right time. Hence, software-based precision farming is the most reliable approach for tracking, monitoring, and predicting crucial variables, such as water quality, ambient temperature and moisture, and soil condition, which impacts the quality of crops, and yield of the farm.”
Data management in agriculture plays a crucial role as the management decisions are based on the real-time data analysis derived from the observations of the agricultural activities. The real-time data received from cloud computing helps in the management of different farm activities such as farm mapping, planting, crop monitoring, harvesting, inventory management, and marketing.
“Cloud computing is a core technology in the precision farming software practices, which helps in the exchange of data between the software and hardware equipment with minimum human intervention,” states the report.
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The Americas account for the major chunk of the global precision farming software market in 2018, wherein the US and Canada were the major contributors. The Americas held for a major share of around 47% of the global precision farming software market in 2018, and this trend is expected to continue in the coming years as well.
The early adoption of precision farming software by countries such as the US and Canada are the key factors responsible for the highest market share by the Americas. Moreover, the Americas has the highest number of IoT devices installed at the agriculture farms.
Partnerships, agreements, mergers & acquisitions were the key growth strategies adopted by companies from 2016-2018. The prominent players operating in the global precision farming software market have adopted growth strategies, such as mergers & acquisitions, partnerships, and product launches and developments to grow in the market.
For instance, AgJunction partnered Swift Navigation in May 2019 to develop near-autonomous small tractor solutions for agricultural applications. John Deere acquired Blue River Technology, a start-up in the artificial intelligence space, in September 2017. HydroPoint acquired Baseline, Inc. (US), a smart water management technology provider, in 2016. This acquisition strengthened the portfolio of HydroPoint smart water management technology and also helped in expanding its geographic footprint.
Big data and ICT-based decision support systems
Big data helps companies to provide precision farming software to make an accurate analysis, which would help to make better decisions related to crop management, yield mapping, and other applications. Precision farming software is used for financial management, crop management, yield mapping, record keeping, weather tracking, and inventory management. The information gathered by this software is integrated with the historical data to provide alerts regarding crop features, weather, and moisture content of the soil.
ICT-based decision support systems, coupled with real-time data, provide information that covers all the aspects of farming at a granular level, which further improves decision-making, reduces water wastage, and increases efficiency at farms.
Moreover, farmers can ensure the supply of the right amount of fertiliser and water at the right time on the farm with the help of smart controllers and sensors. Software-based precision farming comprises specialised hardware devices, software, and services used to obtain real-time data to help farmers make effective decisions about their farms.
The integration of the Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies, such as machine learning, computer vision, and predictive analytics, further enable farmers to analyse real-time data regarding weather conditions, temperature, soil moisture, and plant health.