March 26, 2014
Army officials have decided to hit the pause button on current efforts to equip combat brigades with wireless communications networks. They are recalibrating their plans after it became clear that the current systems are too esoteric and exceedingly difficult for Army units to maintain in the field.
Three combat brigades have been equipped with a new information network of sensors, software and radios that the Army has been assembling since 2011. Senior leaders have been emphatic that a 21st century battlefield network — with all the bells and whistles that are available to civilians in the information age — would be the Army’s highest modernization priority. An on-the-move communications network that stays connected over vast distances has been a technological promised land for Army commanders, and for soldiers on the front lines who need to email, text and talk.