Singapore Armed Forces can consider themselves quite lucky since Apple’s iPad 2 will be given as standard equipment for 8,000 servicemen.
By integrating the tablet into the soldiers’ essential equipment, the Army hopes to "take advantage of the technological abilities of the city-state's youth", Modmyi reports (opens in new tab) citing army officials.
Most recruits are young people who have solid knowledge about the current information and communication technology, so the army is trying to harness this and make the most of its technologically savvy servicemen, Defense chief Neo Kian Hong explained.
Troops can use the iPad 2 to take photos and video clips for post-mission assessments; additionally, the tablet will allow soldiers and their commanders to better communicate in real-time via live messaging services and chat groups.
Critics have claimed the iPad 2 is nothing more than another measure the Army has taken to drive recruitment. However, in Singapore two years military service is mandatory for all "able-bodied male citizens" and "permanent residents".
The usefulness of the iPad 2 on the battlefield could be limited and the tablet may even complicate the soldiers’ operations, some have suggested. Instead of focusing on the enemy and potential dangers, soldiers must now also keep an eye on the notifications displayed on the iPad.