WASHINGTON - The US Army wants to make upgrading software as easy as it is with an iPhone, so it’s testing out some changes to make that a reality, said Young Bang, the Army’s principal deputy acquisition chief, according to Defense One.
One key change is doing away with the practice of “sustainment,” under which software is fielded and fixed by different Army offices.
Up until now, the Army has generally fielded new software through various program executive offices, then handed off the products to Army Materiel Command, which handles any needed patches or upgrades. This is inefficient, Bang said.
Now the service aims to mimic a commercial developer whose software team writes an app, works to improve it, and releases periodic updates.
The Army has picked four programs to test out this new model: Enterprise Business Systems-Convergence, Nett Warrior, Army Intelligence Data Platform, and Cyber Situational Understanding. Each highlights at least one piece of the software-development lifecycle: requirements, software development, cybersecurity, contracting, and testing, he said.
The Army is also working on six pilots that will make it easier to upgrade software on a device: Firestorm PlUgin, Cyber Situational Understanding, Army Intelligence Data Platform, Mounted Mission Command—Software, Command Post Computing Environment, and Army Integrated Air and Missile Defense.