Apparently, the U.S. military is on high alert with regard to BlackBerry.
In particular, the US Air Force has announced plans to swap out approximately 5,000 BlackBerry devices in favor of Apple’s iPhone and iPad.
According to published reports over the weekend, this latest move on the part of military officials is the next step in the largely unavoidable retirement of all BlackBerry products used in an official capacity by USAF personnel.
“In order to keep costs down and save on network resources, BlackBerrys will be turned in and shut off once the user is transitioned to an iOS device,” Brig. Gen. Kevin Wooton, communications director for Air Force Space Command, said in a statement provided to The Air Force Times.
The Air Force didn’t say whether these devices will be supported by the Defense Information Systems Agency’s new mobile device management software, but it’s likely that DISA will play a role in centrally managing Air Force devices. Last month, DISA said it is working with Air Mobility Command to connect devices to the network. Mobility pilots have been in place across Air Force Space Command, Air Mobility Command, and Air Combat since October 2011.
“The pilot tests we have run have shown positive results with the user communities,” Wooton added. “However, we’ve only scratched the surface. As the number of users grows, we’re confident our airmen will find new and innovative ways to enhance operations and job effectiveness.”