Smart phones look like replacing the U.S. Army’s multi-million program, Nett Warrior, to outfit soldiers with wearable computers. That program was put on ice in July while the Army reviewed whether it made sense “to make soldiers wear eight pounds of gear to do less than what a few-once phone (plus a tactical, encrypted radio) can offer.” Wired says that effectively the Army is now preparing to shop for smartphones and insisting that they “be powered by Android.”
What’s the Big Idea?
Generic, commercial smartphones handled network usage well during a recent test at the White Sands Missile Range this summer. And incoming Chief of Staff Ray Odierno may soon decide whether to require soldiers to carry smartphones as a standard piece of gear. The Army envisions a “smartphone or smartphone-like device (repackaged smartphone technology)” that can provide “commercial-based, integrated computer, display and data-entry capability for dismounted use in either standalone or networked configuration.”