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Pentagon to Support Apple and Google Mobile Devices

February 26, 2013

By Paul Thomson :: 8:05 PM

BlackBerry use may wane at Pentagon.Traditionally a BlackBerry shop, the Pentagon is working to make its digital networks available to more flavors of smartphones and tablets, including those that run Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating system.

The change could come within the year, as the U.S. Department of Defense released a statement earlier today confirming that its Information Technology office will be allowing access to devices running iOS and Android.

Teri Takai, the chief information officer for the Department of Defense said that the change in strategy is in step with the office’s increasing reliance on mobile communications technology for global operations, and integration of secure and non-secure communications channels. The agency is also exploring the development of portable, cloud-enabled functionality to increase the number of staff members who are able to collaborate and share information in real-time.

One company will not be very happy with this turn of events, and that is BlackBerry. Analyst estimates peg the U.S. military operations centers in the capital with roughly 600,000 mobile devices in use, 470,000 of which are BlackBerry handsets. Apple and Android devices only account for about 50,000 handsets. Widespread support for non-BlackBerry devices will certainly drive up the iOS and Android numbers.