Army wants soldiers to carry smartphones in combat

The U.S. Army's fascination with mobile devices peaked in 2008 when it started to issue iPod touches to soldiers to help translate Arabic in Iraq. A new report suggests that the Army is looking into providing an iPhone or Android phone to soldiers — for military purposes of course.

Today's smartphones have become so capable (they're better than our computers from a decade ago) that even the Army wants them. Soldiers equipped with smartphones would be able to "view real-time intelligence and video from unmanned systems overhead and track friends and enemies on a dynamic map," said Army officials. "The goal is for soldiers to get information when they need it, wherever they are."

One of the roadblocks right now is security. Army officials stated that they are working on securing data and cell networks before deploying an iPhone out into the field. Yeah, we're pretty sure it doesn't want another Lady Gaga slip up.

Not only that, but the Army is working on "ruggedizing" the phones. What they call "ruggedize," we call "uglify." While a BlackBerry or an Android phone might take a good drop in the mountains of Pakistan, the same can't be said for an iPhone 4.

USA Today reports that the Army isn't limiting itself to only issuing smartphones, but that it was considering iPads, Kindles and even some old as hell mobiles such as the Palm Treo (yuck). Hey Uncle Sam, stick with the new stuff, like Android, it's much more adaptable, secure and we're sure our boys and girls out there would appreciate the new shiny gadgets a lot more.

Via USA Today

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