“The U.S. Air Force announced earlier in February that it will be swapping out some 5,000 BlackBerry devices for Apple’s iPhone and iPad, with the move being a first step in the eventual retirement of all BlackBerry products carried by USAF personnel,” Mikey Campbell reports for AppleInsider.

“‘In order to keep costs down and save on network resources, BlackBerrys will be turned in and shut off once the user is transitioned to an iOS device,’ said Brig. Gen. Kevin Wooton, communications director for Air Force Space Command,” Campbell reports. “Apple has vastly expanded its hardware presence in vetted U.S. military applications. In March of 2012, the Air Force Air Mobility Command awarded a $9.36 million contract to a specialized computer services company for the purchase of up to 18,000 iPads. The Apple tablets are used as electronic flight bags and will save the military branch an estimated $50 million in fuel costs and document reprinting.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader "Fred Mertz" for the heads up.]

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U.S. Air Force to save $50 million by deploying up to 18,000 Apple iPads – May 17, 2013
U.S. Air Force awards $9.36 million contract for 18,000 Apple iPad 2 units – March 2, 2012