Targeting the Taliban? There’s an iPhone App For That
An iPhone app that tracks down the Taliban has been developed by a U.S. soldier — who put $26,000 of his own money into the project.
The idea for a smartphone application to assist soldiers in combat came to Capt. Jonathan J. Springer in a dream last July, he said Monday. The 31-year-old, from Fort Wayne, Ind., has worked with programmers ever since to make the idea a reality.
Tactical Nav, which is expected to be available through Apple’s App Store next month, assists soldiers in mapping, plotting and photographing waypoints on a battleground and conveying coordinates to supporting units.
Springer used a variety of armored vehicles, remote observation posts and harsh combat conditions to test the accuracy of his invention, which can also be used to direct artillery fire on enemy positions or call in helicopter support.
Springer, who serves as a battalion fire support officer in eastern Afghanistan, said most soldiers use smartphones and the app has been designed specifically for them.
“Since day one, I always believed that smartphones could be utilized by the U.S. military for combat purposes,” he said.
“Basically, the issue was the fact that these smartphones were being untapped by the army and I was motivated and determined to change that, even if it cost me my own money out of pocket to do so,” he added.