Poor performance of Android smartphone makes the US Army to switch to iPhone
As the battle between smartphones based on Google’s Android mobile operating system and Apple’s iOS powered iPhones continues, in the meanwhile, the US Army Special Operations Command (SOC) has decided to change the smartphones its soldiers will carry, making the switch from Android to iPhone 6s.
According to a report by Military.com’s DoDBuzz, it was revealed that the soldiers currently equipped with the Android Tactical Assault Kit (ATAC), which was essentially a glorified Samsung Galaxy Note, will soon be replaced by the iPhone Tactical Assault Kit, according to a source within the Army who is not authorized to communicate with the media. However, it is not clear which exact version of Android and which specific Galaxy Note device is involved.
The Tactical Assault Kits are made up of a system that links a smartphone to a connected network radio, allowing unit leaders to keep track of their own locations and the locations of their troops on a digital map.
Apparently, the Samsung Android smartphones would freeze up when running some of the Army’s custom apps, while the iPhone 6s was deemed to be “faster and smoother”, which has prompted the switch.
The problem with the Android is particularly noticeable when viewing live feed from an unmanned aerial system such as Instant Eye, the source said.
When trying to run a split screen showing the route and unmanned aircraft system (UAS) feed, the Android smartphone will freeze up and fail to refresh properly and often have to be restarted, a process that wastes valuable minutes, the source said.
“It’s seamless on the iPhone,” according to the source. “The graphics are clear, unbelievable.”
Apple gear has been used in one form or another by the American military for years. In 2010, the US army gave soldiers iPod touches in Afghanistan and Iraq equipping each with language modules including Iraqi Arabic, Kurdish, Dari, and Pashto.
Further, in 2013, the US Department of Defense had said that iOS 6 devices were safe enough to connect to Pentagon networks and to be used for low-level security clearance work. Before that, it used 470,000 BlackBerry devices, 41,000 Apple ones and 8,700 products running Android.