Technology Infiltrates The Army

With smartphones becoming the preferred mode of communication, it was only a matter of time before the Military can find an excellent use for such technology. That time has arrived with the Fort Meade Public Affairs Office announcing the opening of their mobile-friendly website.

Jason Kelly, PAO emerging media manager agree that "our society is very mobile". Further, he believes that the Fort Meade mobile website makes it easier to get information using smartphones while away from desktop computers. 

The idea just came up two weeks ago but Kelly immediately began designing and testing the application. The result reveals two noteworthy attributes.

·         Designed with the general audience in mind, the application works on any smartphone equipped with an Internet browser.
·         Users can choose to get information like schedule changes via the website or through a text message.

Users can access the mobile version of Fort Meade's website at www.ftmeade.army.mil using any smartphone. The website includes a telephone directory, calendar of upcoming events, directions to post from the surrounding area, the menu for the Freedom Inn Dining Facility, content for the weekly Soundoff! Newspaper and access to social media sites. Kelly reveals they are looking at ways to customize information for internal and external communities. 

To get text messages, users need to register to the service by typing, follow ftmeadealert, and sending the message to 40404.  Text messages for changes in operating schedules will be automatically sent to registered users. Texts are sent via Twitter but don’t require registration in the social media site. Standard SMS rates apply but the service itself is offered free by Fort Meade.

Director of Public Affairs Office, Chad Jones, is pleased with the application's launch. He says, "Our goal at PAO is to make information as accessible and useful as possible". The new mobile friendly website helps the Army do that. Jones adds that he "wants to encourage feedback from the community to make this as effective as possible".

According to Kelly, Fort Meade is the first military community to launch a mobile friendly website that doesn't need additional apps to access. He said, "We’re offering a new example of how to embrace emerging media to better communicate with our community" through the enhanced version of the website.