John Deere has announced that it will enhance the capabilities of existing diagnostic tools and expand their availability. In 2023, the company will roll out an enhanced customer solution that includes a mobile device interface, and the ability to download secure software updates directly to embedded controllers on select John Deere equipment with 4G connections.
Deere and other companies are under pressure to make it easier for farmers to repair their equipment themselves. Montana Senator Jon Tester has introduced a right to repair bill in the Senate.
“John Deere is continuously innovating, developing, and bringing to market new technologies and solutions that enable our customers to be more productive, efficient, and sustainable,” said Luke Gakstatter, senior vice president for aftermarket and customer support. “These enhanced self-repair solutions follow that same guiding approach.”
“Customers with connectivity already receive proactive maintenance through over-the-air software updates and diagnostic code information available to their smart phone,” Gakstatter said. “The next step for us to digitize and enhance the repairability experience is to enable customers themselves to remotely download secure software updates to controllers.”
In addition, John Deere announced today that coming this May it will expand its offerings by giving customers and independent repair shops in the U.S. the ability to purchase Customer Service ADVISOR directly through JohnDeereStore.com.
“We recognize our customers’ desire for more autonomy in managing their equipment,” said Gakstatter. “Quality and uptime are essential to their operations. That’s why we’re expanding the point-of-sale options for Customer Service ADVISOR to include the John Deere Store website, which will give our customers and independent repair shops direct access to additional self-repair tools.”
However, the United States Public Interest Research Group, which has criticized equipment manufacturers for restricting customer access to resources to repair their machines, called for more. A U.S. PIRG Spokesperson says, “Farmers don’t have time to wait for another half-step, only to learn several years down the line that they are still not allowed to perform critical repairs on their equipment.”