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Deere Tapping Into Apple-Like Tech Model to Drive Revenue

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The Deere & Co. 8R autonomous tractor.

Farmers have long been wary about how machinery and supplier firms profit off the data gleaned from their operations, and how secure such data is. But with farmers facing economic pressures, Deere and other manufacturers said it is easier to sell farmers

Credit: Bianca Flowers/REUTERS

Agriculture machinery manufacturer Deere & Co. hopes to drive up revenue by emulating Apple's business strategy and melding state-of-the-art hardware, software, and subscription models.

The company is developing self-driving equipment outfitted with the latest software, and Deere's Julia Sanchez said the next step involves enabling the gear to plan and execute seeding from satellite imagery and soil data.

Deere executives told analysts on a conference call that the company will largely uphold its point-of-sale model for hardware, but will incorporate a software-as-a-service model for autonomous products like its driverless 8R tillage tractor.

A key selling point of such investments for farmers is the ability to collect crop insights from vast agronomic datasets, which eliminates guesswork from planting strategies and saves money.

From Reuters
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