Report Shows American Farmers Rely on Wireless Technology to Increase Productivity and Conserve Water

by CTIA Wireless Foundation | Apr 22, 2016

Wireless broadband is primary Internet connection for U.S. farms, which increased 950 percent between 2005 and 2013

WASHINGTON – In honor of Earth Day, CTIA Wireless Foundation™ today released “The Farmer and the Data: How Wireless Technology is Transforming Water Use in Agriculture” report [PDF] it commissioned by The Brattle Group that found wireless technology is transforming how American farmers are improving their productivity while conserving water. According to the report, U.S. farms relied primarily on wireless Internet connectivity, which grew by more than 950 percent between 2005 and 2013.

Wireless technology provides real-time access to soil moisture level information and enables real-time adjustments to irrigation schedules so that farmers have more crops and profitability. Due to California’s water crisis, the state’s farmers relied on wireless to reduce the amount of irrigation water by 25 percent. Meanwhile, Minnesota famers use soil moisture probes and wireless technology to reduce nitrogen and other nutrients that are good for plants, but can be dangerous for humans and animals from leaching into the groundwater.

While California and other western states are still facing droughts, the report stated that within the next 10 years, 40 out of the 50 states will have some type of water shortage. As water becomes scarce, cost-effective irrigation methods and water conservation will become increasingly important.

“Thanks to innovative wireless technology that helps farmers increase productivity while conserving water and protecting the environment, everyone benefits from ‘smart’ agriculture,” said Athena Polydorou, Executive Director, CTIA Wireless Foundation.


“The Farmer and the Data: How Wireless Technology is Transforming Water Use in Agriculture” report is available here [PDF] and the one page summary is available here [PDF].

About CTIA Wireless Foundation

CTIA Wireless Foundation ( is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to developing and supporting initiatives that use wireless technology to help American communities. Its innovative programs benefit consumers in areas including education, health, safety and the environment. The Foundation was formed by CTIA® member companies in 1991.

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CTIA Wireless Foundation: Amy Storey, [email protected], 202-736-3207