Long a stronghold for BlackBerry, the Department of Defense announced this week that it will open its communications network to iOS and Android devices in the coming year. This will be the first time commercial, off-the-shelf products will be used for classified communications.
The biggest changes may come at the Pentagon, which is dominated by BlackBerry smartphones. According to the DOD statement, the Pentagon has more than 600,000 mobile devices, including 470,000 BlackBerry devices, 41,000 iOS devices and 8,700 devices running Google’s Android OS. Most of the Android and iOS devices are used for testing purposes or are not directly connected to the Defense Department’s network.