Wired is reporting that the US Army has chosen to use an Android-based phone as its first smartphone for US troops. Now in prototype stage, the US Army Android smartphone is called the Joint Battle Command-Platform and will have its SDK released to Android developers in July. Currently, the phone has mapping apps and apps that track where friendly forces are.
It’s really no surprise the US Army opted for an Android phone over an iPhone. Android phones allow the US Army to build its own specific hardware and not rely on a company like Apple for system-level improvements.
Also, a sleek design style doesn’t seem to be a priority for the army as troops need smartphone hardware that can take a beating, which a phone like the iPhone, or even current Android phones like the HTC Thunderbolt, don’t seem capable of. The prototype Joint Battle Command-Platform currently weighs in at two pounds.
It should also be noted that while the US Army is currently testing Android as its smartphone OS of choice, Wired states that could change. However, given Apple’s relatively closed iOS ecosystem, it’s hard to imagine the US Army choosing Apple’s platform over other smartphone OS makers.