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S. Korean military develops smartphone apps

The South Korean military said Sunday it would introduce smartphone applications to enhance operational capabilities.

The military developed nine applications, and is planning to prepare security tools for them by the end of this year before deciding which ranks will get the smartphones.

According to the military, the applications were developed by a contractor under the program for establishing a pilot system for using smartphones for military purposes.

The applications are to be distributed to smartphones certified to access the Ministry of National Defense and Joint Chiefs of Staff’s servers.

“The applications’ usefulness to military operations was proven by tests conducted by related institutions and combat units,” a military official told the local media.

“The smartphones with military applications performed better than radio devices in areas with poor military communications reception. As location information can be transmitted in real time, the system can also be used for location tracking.”

Tests have also shown that the applications can be of use for up to six years when installed on smartphones with capabilities similar or above that of Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy S II.

The move follows that of the U.S. military, which has been testing military smartphone applications including one capable of translating 40 languages and one for calculating environmental factors for snipers since last year.

The applications developed by the South Korean military include those for sending and receiving still and video images, real-time video streaming, augmented reality, navigation, and image and document libraries.

The real time video streaming application is designed to allow users to view video images of a location in an emergency situation, while the image library contains images related to the North Korean military including uniforms and insignia.

The augmented reality application is programmed to show three dimensional images of the geographical features of an operations area.

By Choi He-suk  (cheesuk@heraldcorp.com)
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