DoD to Speed up Approval Process for Mobile Devices



Mike O'Brien
08/13/2013

The Defense Department is looking to speed up its drawn-out process for approving new smartphones, tablets and apps.

The aim is to review and approve mobile apps and devices within 30 days by working with industry in advance so that products are built to the stringent department standards.

That way the DoD can verify the required standards have been met instead of carrying out its own time-consuming retests.

Jennifer Carter, the component acquisition executive at the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), told Federal Times: "The traditional DoD cycle times do not meet what is needed to get these capabilities out to the warfighter, and we don’t want to be where by the time we issue the device it’s obsolete and … you have to buy it on eBay."

She added that speeding up the review and approval process may mean having to accept more risks.

That may include the possibility that new technology may not work perfectly the first time it’s adopted, with mobile users having to wait to get newer devices or capabilities while DISA works out the problem.

Ms. Carter said: "We want to get in partnership with industry folks before they release products so that when they do release it we can turn around and buy it because it’s now available.

"If the DoD waited for a product to mature and be completely proven before we started the process to offer that as a capability, we would always be again behind the curve."

There are currently two upcoming mobility contracts in the pipeline, including a mobile applications enterprise solutions contract to provide mobile access to office applications, she added.

Mobile strategies will be discussed at IDGA's Enterprise Mobility for Government event in December. For full details, go to http://www.enterprisemobilityevent.com/