Smartphones Going Into Battle, Army Says

Modern U.S. soldiers are equipped with cutting edge military technology, but the latest addition to their arsenal isn’t an artificially intelligent automatic weapon or a flying humvee -- it’s an iPhone.

The iPhone program is part of a new chapter in warfare, where connectivity will be fundamental to military success. Army officials expect smartphones to be widely deployed in war zones in 2011 so soldiers can access real-time intel during war, according to Army Times.

“What we’re doing is fundamentally changing how soldiers access knowledge, information, training content and operational data,” said Mike McCarthy, director of the mission command complex of Future Force Integration Directorate at Fort Bliss, to Army Times.

For now, soldiers will be limited to either Apple’s iPhone or Google Android-powered phones, but officials expect to expand their repertoire of devices beyond smartphones to tablets, e-readers and even portable projectors.

With the program still in its experimental phase, soldiers will have sufficient license to customize their new toys. “We need to create an environment that lets them find the applications that are best suited for that individual, and that’s the approach we’re taking,” McCarthy told the Wall Street Journal.

Read more in the Wall Street Journal's Digits blog.