Military Once Again Turning to Android for Battlefield Solutions


The US military’s flirtations with Android date all the way back to 2009, so it should come as no surprise that the operating system originally intended for civilian mobile devices is once again being turned to for advanced battlefield technology. This time the military is contracting Harris and Intelligent Software Solutions (ISS) with the aim of developing apps for smartphones and tablets that can be used in critical mission situations.

ISS has been tasked with creating an interface that will quickly allow newly deployed soldiers to get a top down view of what fighting has already occurred through the combination of historical data, geo-location, and mapping capabilities. Harris is currently developing an application that will act as a remote display for images and video captured by flying drones.

The aim is to create sophisticated experiences tailored towards battlefield use without the need for expensive battlefield equipment. Instead of paying up front to ruggedize devices, the apps would function on off-the-shelf consumer products, which could be easily and cheaply replaced if broken. The fact that soldiers may already be familiar with the smartphone and tablet technology from their civilian lives doesn’t hurt either.

[via ComputerWorld]

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  1. Does the US military even send in ground troops anymore? I thought they just send in smart missiles to just blow everything up?

  2. Besides the Motorola Defy, are there any military-spec’d Android devices they could use in the field? Especially tablets… anyone know of any coming out?

  3. Love the android logo! Someone deserves a gold star for that one.

  4. Beast your an idiot.

  5. Skytrooper, *your* not making a good case for yourself either.

  6. @Ron – The point is they don’t have to be “military spec” anymore. More often than not the additional hardening and protections to be “military spec” bump the costs up 5-6x and really limit flexibility and time to the ground of new technologies.

    The idea behind this effort is to use COTS phones with hardened cases (think Otterbox Defender on crack) to bring the overall costs way down which will allow for a much shorter service life. The lower cost and off the shelf nature allows for quick and easy replacements for the field and the shorter service life allows the military to better adapt to the rapidly changing mobile market.

  7. So how long before we or our enemies have EMP grenades to neutralize this advantage?

    And then how long until we harden against EMP?

  8. @REM
    Exactly what I was thinking.

  9. I wonder why no one has made a forearm holster for the android yet? I mean, it’s good enough for a predator to take on an alien….

  10. It’s strange to me that US military depending on Android phones. But it shows the devlopment of US that how advanced US is as compared to other countries.


  11. @Atul …no it doesn’t

  12. Makes sense. apple is not open source so who knows what is in that code.

  13. What happens when the enemy grabs one of the devices and gets easy access to all of our battlefield intelligence?

  14. Not until the jump did I realize the military is turning to Android AND iPhone/iPads.

  15. @Ron:

    There is the GD300 by General Dynamics:

  16. Let’s hope they don’t get any FC error messages while in the battlefield…

  17. @ BEAST
    That was a pretty ignorant statement on your part. there will always be a need for the human factor in the military. technology will always be the tool. speaking from experience, anything more technologically advanced would help save the lives of our troops and those around who are non-combatants.

  18. Droid logo ROCKS!

  19. imagine if it used google goggles to identify targets.

  20. @ beast. Your a fag too.

  21. First order of battle – blow up all Apple users!!!

  22. Lol. All your bases are belonged to us.

  23. Oh and also they do have arm bands for closed network pda’s. Usaully designed by qualcomm.

  24. Can’t they just get one of those phones Jack Bauer uses? He’s always having Chloe send him realtime sat imagery before he single handedly storms the White House.

  25. Test 4

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