The US army plans on issuing a paid-up smartphone to soldiers as part of their kit.
Soldiers could find themselves picking an Android or iPhone and having their monthly bill paid for by the Army, USA Today reported.
The director of the US Army Capabilities Integration Center (ARCIC), Lt. Gen. Michael Vane, reportedly said the smartphone could be just another standard item in a soldier's kit bag.
It is believed the army is already working hard to work out how smartphone technology can be used to change the way soldiers fight and train and some recruits are already using them with warzone tests underway at Fort Bliss in Texas.
The magazine reports that the army will begin fielding apps, network equipment and smartphones to be pimped under the first brigade's combat team modernisation programme.
Mike McCarthy, director of mission command complex of Future Force Integration Directorate at Fort Bliss, reportedly said: "We're looking at everything from iPads to Kindles to Nook readers to mini-projectors."
Apparently the army will roll out wireless common access card readers for the iPhone in January and for Android handsets in April, which would give soldiers secure access to their contacts, calendars and emails.
While Angry Birds and other time wasting apps may not prove too handy at war, it is believed smartphones would let soldiers view video from unmanned systems overhead, real-time intelligence and track friends and enemies on maps. However, the army is first working on a way to make the phones' data and network bullet proof.
McCarthy told USA Today:"What we're doing is fundamentally changing how soldiers access knowledge, information, training content and operational data. The day you sign on to be a soldier, you will be accessing information and knowledge in garrison and in an operational environment in a seamless manner. We're using smart phone technologies to lead this."
However, the army has reportedly not tested the concept over classified networks yet as the service first has to prove it can marry the use of conventional smartphones and apps with a mobile infrastructure built to offer coverage in an extreme environment.