Combat smart phones: 2-1 AD provides feedback on futuristic technology

2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division
Courtesy Story

Date: 05.13.2012
Posted: 05.17.2012 18:27
News ID: 88584
Combat smart phones: 2-1 AD provides feedback on futuristic technology

By Sgt. Edward A. Garibay<br /> 16th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment<br /> <br /> EL PASO, Texas - For the past several weeks, soldiers from the 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, have been using a combat smart phone called the Nett Warrior at Fort Bliss, Texas, and White Sands Missile Range, N.M.<br /> <br /> The system, worn on the chest and flipped down, provides Soldiers in combat with real-time locations of friendly forces, and gives them the ability to communicate with other troops as well as mark tactical information on a digital map for others to see.<br /> <br /> “It’s like your own personal GPS,” said Sgt. Matthew A. Guerrant, a squad leader in 2nd Platoon, Company A, 1st Battalion, 35th Cavalry Regiment, 2-1 AD. “You’ll never get lost, you’ll always know where you’re at, you’ll always know what’s going on around you, and you’ll always be able to post events right away.”<br /> <br /> “There’s nothing else really like this that soldiers have been using, to my knowledge,” said 1st Lt. Travis P. Kyle, infantry platoon leader for 2nd Plt.<br /> <br /> The image seen by those using the Nett Warrior is similar to real-time tactical maps seen in first-person shooter video games that display battlefield terrain, friendly locations and objective points, said Spc. Julio Espinoza, radio transmitter operator also with 2nd Plt. <br /> <br /> “I can see the similarities,” said Espinoza, comparing the Nett Warrior to technology seen in video games.<br /> <br /> The system is not yet in main circulation for soldiers, but is being assessed by the Army for possible fielding in the future through the Network Integration Evaluation 12.2.<br /> <br /> The NIE occurs semi-annually, and places equipment that is under consideration by the Army in the harshest of battlefield conditions.<br /> <br /> “This environment will break equipment that is not up to the task,” said Col. Daniel Pinnell, commander of 2-1 AD. “The heat, the dust and the constant abuse in the hands of Soldiers will separate the weak from the strong very quickly.”<br /> <br /> So far though, the concept of a combat smart phone is definitely one worth investigating, said Kyle.<br /> <br /> “It’s definitely something that I think at some point will be very useful in the soldier’s hands,” he added.