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US Army Special Operations Command reportedly drops Android for "faster, smoother" iPhone 6s

By midian182 ยท 12 replies
Jul 19, 2016
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  1. The argument over which is “better,” iPhones or Android devices, has raged on for a long time. Ultimately, it comes down to personal choice, but it seems we now know which one the military prefers; a report from DoDBuzz.com claims the United States Army’s Special Operations Command is switching from Android to Apple.

    According to an army source who is “not authorized to speak to the media,” the Android Tactical Assault Kit (ATAC) – a system that enables unique military capabilities on smartphones and links devices to a connected radio network – isn’t very reliable. It apparently lags, freezes, and requires restarts often, whereas the iPhone 6s offers a much faster and smoother experience.

    The Special Operations division noted the improvement when running a split screen view of a drone’s live feed and a map showing its route on the latest Apple smartphone. “It’s seamless on the iPhone. The graphics are clear, unbelievable.”

    It’s not known exactly which Android device the Special Operations Command forces were using, though it’s suspected to be some version of the Samsung Galaxy Note, which is used by another division of the military. If it’s the original 2010 device or Note II then you can see why they want to upgrade.

    Should ATAC become iTAC, it won’t be the first time that the Cupertino company’s products have made their way into the armed services. Back in 2010, the army handed out iPod touch devices to soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan equipped with apps to help them learn local dialects.

    Permalink to story.

  2. davislane1

    davislane1 Inquisitor Posts: 4,493   +3,492

    Android fans and Apple haters who know what US SOCOM needs more than US SOCOM in 3... 2... 1...
    mbrowne5061 likes this.
  3. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 7,986   +2,878

    Apple probably made SOCOM an offer they couldn't refuse, or more likely 'they couldn't understand'.
    ikesmasher, FF222 and MoeJoe like this.
  4. MoeJoe

    MoeJoe TS Guru Posts: 641   +348

    More blocking of access to come ...
  5. BSim500

    BSim500 TS Guru Posts: 293   +448

    LOL. I know the military loves their acronyms but have things really reached the level of cheese where "Elite Special Commando Badass Assault Kit" is needed to describe what's basically a custom encryption plugin for a communication app and an "English to Arabic" shortcut link for Google Translate?...
  6. They just want to be Special
  7. Greg S

    Greg S TechSpot Staff Posts: 833   +411

    All this shows is that 2016 hardware > 2010 or older hardware. I think that's pretty obvious.
    mbrowne5061 and FF222 like this.
  8. Hexic

    Hexic TS Maniac Posts: 310   +151

    You would be surprised. There are acronyms for damn near everything in the military.
  9. fredderf81

    fredderf81 TS Enthusiast Posts: 51   +40

    ...its the department of defense...they probably just couldn't figure out how to work the android devices.

    apple devices are made for the low-tech mind. I'm not bashing - I'm not an apple hater - or an android lover - I don't care. from an IT point of view the apple OS is simple and easy - my wife's grandma can use it. apple makes great products for people who don't want to learn, or just don't have the capacity to use high-tech devices....so its perfect for the department of defense...maybe they can pair it up with their floppy disks controlling all of the nukes =) *flame on*
  10. Capaill

    Capaill TS Evangelist Posts: 379   +133

    I agree that that is a huge advantage to Apple.
    But the thing is, once you set up an Android device for her, with just what she wants, she would be just as happy with that. I have set up a few Android tablets for the older generation and they are extremely happy with them. They also love that the charger is the same as for their (usually Samsung) phones.
    I expect the military users of ATAK are more or less the same - once the apps are installed and configured and supported, any modern device would do. It's not like they would be allowed to go into the app store and customise those devices anyway. Of greater importance should be hardware reliability, dust/water/shock proof, battery life, security and overall quality/speed.
  11. amstech

    amstech IT Overlord Posts: 1,710   +869

    If your not tech savvy get an iphone.
  12. mbrowne5061

    mbrowne5061 TS Evangelist Posts: 653   +286

    I know not necessarily SOCOM, but MARINE: "Muscles Are Required Intelligence Not Expected"
  13. Jibberish18

    Jibberish18 TS Evangelist Posts: 595   +58

    You see this is where I disagree with people about iOS (Note I have no preferences for any OS) My wife gave her Dad an iPhone 5 because she thought it would be easy for him. Honestly he does the few things that she showed him how to do which is play a couple of games and pick up a phone call. Anything else makes him pause and stutter. Now if I would have given him my HTC One and customized it for him he would have been just fine using it because you can place everything just right for him.

    Honestly I always thought Windows Phone was the ultimate in simplicity.

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