Contact Us

US Army May Issue Smartphones for Combat Use

John Moore, Getty Images

After a successful trial run using touchscreen phones and tablets in combat, US Army officials say they may begin equipping service members with the devices later this year. It would be used to complement tactical radios and other existing technology.

Smartphones can be used to text updates about surroundings, send GPS photos, and access maps. “When they have a problem or need to submit a report, they default to the texting. These young soldiers grew up with this technology. They’re very familiar with it. They’re very comfortable with it,” said Michael McCarthy, an Army director for the program.

Troops have already tested more than 300 Android, iPhone and Windows Phone units, as well as tablets from Apple, Dell and Hewlett-Packard.

Ed Mazzanti, the Army director who’s lead the pilot program, said a few hurdles still remain since software and transmissions aren’t yet fully secure. “Today, we don’t have the level of encryption that we would need to take (a phone) overseas and fully integrate it into our mission-command systems. [But] there could be some limited deployments even this year, tied to tactical radios that supply the encryption that’s needed.”


Best of News Talk KIT

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for KIT VIP quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive KIT VIP contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.