New Zealand Police to Roll Out iOS Devices to Frontline Officers

Royal New Zealand Police Training College | Wikipedia

Royal New Zealand Police Training College | Wikipedia

Following a test of various mobile platforms, it was reported that the New Zealand police department will be launching 10,000 iOS devices to frontline officers within the next few months. The move was part of a new technology overhaul, with the department taking in Apple iPhone and iPad.

Apple’s iOS Devices to New Zealand’s Frontline Police

Last Wednesday, Prime Minister John Key and Police Minister Anne Tolley announced that 6,000 frontline police officers will be receiving an iPhone as part of their technology overhaul. Moreover, 3,900 of them will also have an iPad. The shift to Apple’s iOS was due to the department’s change of communication provider from Telecom to Vodafone.

The country’s police department will spend NZ$4.3 million to roll out the program over a three-month period, while total funding will cost NZ$159 million over the next ten years. It is expected that the investment will bring in productivity benefits of NZ$305 million during the ten-year span.

As stated by New Zealand Police Chief Information Officer Stephen Crombie, the decision to go with iOS instead of Google’s Android or BlackBerry was the result of an 11-month trial period involving 100 officers.

The trial showed the most useful tools for officers were small personal devices for making phone calls or text messaging, accessing email, and accessing information and photo databases, and a larger such as laptop or tablet for staff who need to do more data entry. Based on frontline officer feedback from the trial the preferred devices are the iPhone as smartphone and iPad for the tablet. The approach used to develop the applications means Police can move to other devices with relative ease as technology changes.

Last Wednesday’s announcement follows recent news that Australia’s Treasury Department will be moving to iOS from BlackBerry. There is an increasing number of government bodies and enterprise that are making a switch to Apple’s platform. This includes US agencies such as NASA, NOAA, and TSA.

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