Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute



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In many rural farming communities across America, wireless internet connectivity is a luxury. Absence of quality connectivity directly affects the adoption of new agricultural technologies, many of which require high-speed wireless connectivity to provide producers with accurate, real-time analytics. The current environment of spotty wireless internet connectivity in some rural areas negatively affects innovation and entrepreneurship in agriculture. In interviews with Nebraska farmers about internet-based technology, of the two farmers provided opposing views on connectivity. One young farmer said he avoids using precision agriculture technologies that run on wireless connectivity because his rural area lacks reliable service. He even talked about how little he uses his cell phone because of its poor service, an unexpected response from a member of the millennial generation. In contrast, a more experienced farmer said he refused to accept the bad service in his area. This farmer paid his communications company to install fiber optic cables out to his farm to boost his connectivity, so he can take advantage of up-and-coming agricultural technologies.