You’ve got all your Christmas shopping finished….except for that one person that seems to be the hardest to buy a gift. They either ‘have everything’ or you’re just not sure what they would truly enjoy. Here’s a list of the top items that are needed/wanted for the farmer, or ag professional, in your life.
Smart Devices: The ag industry favors apple equipment. Phones, tablets, and watches are all smart devices that can be used in many different ways to assist in efficiency.
The new Apple iPhone X phone was recently released with a faster processor than the iPhone 8 (which has better features than the iPhone 7, and so on.) The iPhone 8 and iPhone X, in my opinion, are very similar and the best for ag use. Keep your phone up to date is important and I would never recommend being more than one model behind. If you have an iPhone 6 or below, it’s time to upgrade. Press Release: The future is here: iPhone X Press Release: iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus: A new generation of iPhone Prices from $699 (iPhone8) $799 (8 Plus) $999 (X)
Tablets are an extremely valuable tool to have on the farm. From planting corn to flying a drone, tablets can be used for various reasons. The Apple iPad Pro is the ‘big dog’ that I would highly recommend as it’s currently the best quality table ever made from Apple. It comes in two sizes: 10.5’’ and 12.9’’. Press Release: iPad Pro, in 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch models, introduces the world’s most advanced display and breakthrough performance Prices from $649 (10.5") $799 (12.9")
The Apple Watch just released the Series 3, which includes cellular. This means no matter where you are, getting out of the tractor for a quick minute or sitting at your desk, your cell phone, texts, emails, social media, etc are all on your wrist. This watch also tracks your heart health, at a click of a button it will measure your beats per minute and keep you up to date when your heart rate is too high or too low. In an emergency situation, there is also a quick press of a button to call 9-1-1. A convenient for daily tasks and a safety product all in one. Prices from $329, $399 w/cellular
Apple AirPods Wireless Headphones: With the recent release of new products this fall from Apple came AirPods. These are wireless headphones that work with Bluetooth on your devices. The headphones also have a microphone attached for a clear sound when talking on the phone. Don’t worry about the cord being tangled or not long enough anymore. A charging case is included to ensure they are always ready to go and convenient storage in any bag.
Apple TV 4K: A product released this fall, the Apple TV 4K creates an easy way to display your Apple device screens to the television while emulating the same quality. The Apple TV 4K also allows you to watch select movies and television shows. It's the latest item added to my office and I really like it.
Airport Time Capsule: Another new Apple product, this wireless hard drive allows you to back up memories, projects, etc. The Airport Time Capsule comes in 2TB or 3TB, that’s a lot of memory!
Flir ONE Thermal Camera: This camera is easy to carry in your pocket or backpack to take to the field. The small camera is attached to the bottom of your iPhone and uses your camera to take thermal photos to show the temperature of an object in real-time for data collection and evaluation. We've used these for a couple years with good success.
DJI Drones: DJI is the top-seller of drones in the world. After flying their drones, it’s clear they produce the highest quality and most trusted products. Drones allow for real-time aerial imagery and it’s without question I would recommend the Phantom 4 Pro. The Phantom 4 Pro includes a 4K camera and 12MP still camera, up to 30 minutes of flight time, indoor and outdoor flying, and with a kit from FlyingAg you’ll also receive a hard shell case to transport it from field to field.
These drones are the first step so you can utilize new systems like DroneDeploy to help improve farming efficiency all year long on your farm! Learn more here
If you need to cover more acres, also check out the eBee SQ from SenseFly/Parrot, another great platform. Learn more here
StreamLight Flashlight: The Stinger model flashlights from Streamlight are rechargeable, extremely bright, and durable. These multi-purpose LED flashlights have over 50,000 hours of lifetime! I learned about these flashlights in aviation, and they are also very popular with first responders.
Red Tractor, Red Combines and Red 4WD Tractors all written by Lee Klancher. These table books feature, you guessed it, all red equipment. Within the pages you’ll see the design, build, and transformation over time. Purchase all three as a set or each individual book.
Stories from the Heartland is an autobiography from Max Armstrong and his testimony of experiences from a young age to his now 40 plus year career in the ag broadcasting industry. "With a passion fueled by the lessons he learned on the farm, Max has become, as the cover states, one of America's favorite farm broadcasters as he advocates for the men and women who feed the world."
Half Century of Progress VII 2017 is now available on DVD. The Half Century of Progress Show is an antique event occurring every two years in eastern Illinois where thousands of antique tractors, corn pickers, steam engines, etc. are showcased in the dirt working ground or in the field picking corn, etc.
Heritage Iron is a bi-monthly magazine that features antique equipment. Give the gift of a 1 year, 2 year, or 3 year subscription. I've subscripted to this magazine for years, it's an amazing publication.
The Nest Thermostat and doorbell are simple devices to keep your home controls at your fingertips through your smartphone. The Nest thermostat allows you to set and change your thermostat through an app on your phone, no matter where you are. It also can track movement to know when you are home, and will automatically adjust the temperature in your home (or any building it’s installed). I’ve personally had the Nest thermostat since they came out in 2011 and would highly recommend getting one. It’s saved me time by changing my thermostat while away from home and money from heating an unattended house.
The Nest Hello doorbell creates a shield of security with a camera to tell you who is at your door. This connects as of wi-fi and send the video to your mobile device where you can talk with the visitor. The camera has a 180 degree view and night vision. You can pre-order your Nest Hello for the arrival in February 2018.