How digital is helping farmers in irrigation: case of auto pump starters using smart phones


Meera, Shaik N1 *, Srinivasulu M2 , Arun Kumar S2 ., Raju M 2, Anil Kumar D1 , Praveen Babu R1 , Singh Vidhan T1 and Sambaiah A3

1 ICAR-Indian Institute of Rice Research (ICAR-IIRR), Hyderabad-500 030.

2 eFresh Agri Tech Pvt. Ltd., 3 ANGRAU, Lam, Guntur

* Corresponding author email:

Received: 20th April 2019; Accepted: 20th June 2019


This paper deals with one of the digital solutions for farmers (Auto Pump Starters Using Smart Phones) which is simple, yet needs a critical review. In recent past, several organizations started promoting smart solutions to irrigation control through mobile phones. The smart phone based pump starters allow farmers to monitor and operate irrigation pumps for irrigating crops in remote locations. A study was conducted among farmers who have currently installed and are using the auto starters for irrigating their fields during 2017-18. Benefits of Auto pump starters include; relative easiness to operate/ irrigate compared to earlier, time saving, safety and the flexibility of irrigating. More than 74% of the farmers opined that remote accessibility of pump sets using the auto starters was a striking feature. Update about status of irrigation was perceived as an excellent option by 96.3% farmers. Ease in planning irrigation cycles was also found to be an added advantage by 94.5% of farmers. Indirect benefits include reduced water wastage, electricity wastage, labour wastage and fuel wastage (POL). These smart irrigation solutions will help small farmers in a big way. The improvement in irrigation efficiency will also lead to higher yield and productivity in long term.

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