U.S. Army wants to issues every soldier an Apple iPhone; other devices including iPads being tested

Apple Online Store“The Army wants to issue every soldier an iPhone or Android cellphone — it could be a soldier’s choice,” Joe Gould and Michael Hoffman report for Army Times. “And to top it off, the Army wants to pay your monthly phone bill.”

MacDailyNews Take: Most soldiers, like most civilians, will choose iPhone over a pale imitation:
• Google’s Android nightmare: More than half of all Verizon subscribers want an Apple iPhone – August 16, 2010
• Survey shows significant number of Verizon customers covet Apple iPhones – May 24, 2010
• Survey: Verizon customers suffer from iPhone jealousy – May 10, 2010
• ChangeWave: Majority of Verizon customers want iPhones – May 05, 2010

Gould and Hoffman report, “To most soldiers, it sounds almost too good to be true, but it’s real, said Lt. Gen. Michael Vane, director of the Army Capabilities Integration Center (ARCIC). He said the Army would issue these smartphones just like any other piece of equipment a soldier receives. ‘One of the options potentially is to make it a piece of equipment in a soldier’s clothing bag,’ Vane said.”

“In February, the Army plans to begin fielding phones, network equipment and applications to the first Army brigade to be modernized under the brigade combat team modernization program. That test will not be limited to smart phones but will include any electronic devices that may be useful to troops,” Gould and Hoffman report. “‘We’re looking at everything from iPads to Kindles to Nook readers to mini-projectors,’ said Mike McCarthy, director of the mission command complex of Future Force Integration Directorate at Fort Bliss.”

Gould and Hoffman report, “The Army plans to roll out wireless Common Access Card readers for the iPhone in January and for Android phones in April. This would give soldiers secure access to their e-mail, contacts and calendars.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Dan K.” for the heads up.]

34 Comments

  1. “Another piece of gear for soldiers to keep up with, another piece of gear that could potentially fall into enemy hands”

    Maybe not so dumb after all.

    Enemy soldier “finds lost iPhone”. Takes it to his commander. Commander thinks it’s pretty cool walking around with an iPhone. Forgot about find my iPhone. Hears drone overhead. Oops

  2. This may have ties to the DoD article posted earlier about wanting more access to apple and googles OS codes…

    As far as a case for them, odds are if it is true they would assign them with cases like the otter box etc. Tough cases for the phones.
    I saw a 3G iPhone otterbox case that got ran over by a truck… Case shot, iPhone not a scratch.

  3. @Tommy Boy
    that’s right. Another mission-critical weapon will come from our ally during the Korean, Vietnam and Iraq wars. They’ll make sure we’ll get what’s coming to us like they’ve tried before. Something has to be done about US manufacturing. Unfortunately, our current leaders are the wrong people.

  4. @Tommy Boy
    that’s right. Another mission-critical weapon will come from our ally during the Korean, Vietnam and Iraq wars. They’ll make sure we’ll get what’s coming to us like they’ve tried before. Something has to be done about US manufacturing. Unfortunately, our current leaders are the wrong people.

  5. @Tommy Boy
    that’s right. Another mission-critical weapon will come from our ally during the Korean, Vietnam and Iraq wars. They’ll make sure we’ll get what’s coming to us like they’ve tried before. Something has to be done about US manufacturing. Unfortunately, our current leaders are the wrong people.

  6. only if the cost of the new hardware is offset by reductions in defense spending elsewhere.

    paranoid defense spending is the single biggest budget item — a budget that is so far out of balance that even China is wondering why it should buy US bonds.

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