Samsung’s Tactical Edition mobile devices continue to transform the way military personnel operate, enhancing situational awareness and decision-making capabilities to an unprecedented level. This achievement is the result of a collaboration between the Department of Defense (DoD) and Samsung engineers that began more than 10 years ago.

In 2012, the first custom tactical Samsung read-only memory (ROM) was developed, leading to the subsequent launch of the S9 Tactical Edition. This marked the beginning of the Tactical Edition line of commercially available mobile devices that effectively integrate with software designed for military operations. Samsung Galaxy Tactical Edition Solutions are now supporting thousands of DoD personnel across all military branches. They are purpose-built and proven by special operations personnel, with the power to achieve their objectives in a wide range of assignments and environments.

Mission-ready Tactical Edition mobile devices

The Tactical Edition portfolio has recently expanded to two models, Samsung Galaxy S23 Tactical Edition and XCover6 Pro Tactical Edition. These mission-ready mobile devices offer advanced capabilities that meet DoD security requirements and are part of a comprehensive partner ecosystem. Equipped with custom software and features, these Tactical mobile devices seamlessly integrate with a range of peripherals and support classified and tactical applications, including complex terrain navigation and communication with command units.

Tactical solutions now leverage the full power of Samsung’s latest mobile devices and provide warfighters with cutting-edge mobile technology in the field while providing IT teams with an easily deployable, highly secure solution suitable for regulated environments.

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Military communication capabilities

Galaxy S23 Tactical Edition and XCover6 Pro Tactical Edition come preconfigured with a software suite and purpose-built drivers to support tactical radio and mission device protocols, including drone feed access and laser rangefinder information. Both models support conventional cellular capabilities, including LTE wireless (multicarrier and private), CBRS, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi. They can also be tethered to secure tactical communication systems and feature a stealth mode that disables LTE and e-911, muting all radio frequency broadcasting (including GPS) from a hardware level. This ensures communications are secure and completely off the grid.

When wearing night vision devices, illumination can be turned on and off to remain unnoticeable. In a hostage or crisis negotiation, incoming calls can be automatically accepted in speaker mode, and outgoing calls can be prevented. Calls can be easily recorded as well.

Secure protection

Cybersecurity remains a top priority for Samsung’s Tactical Edition line, and the new Galaxy S23 Tactical Edition and XCover6 Pro Tactical Edition continue this commitment. Both models are protected by Samsung Knox security, a defense-grade platform that is built into Samsung mobile devices from the chip up, ensuring superior protection and encryption that keeps data safe. Knox Dual Data at Rest (DualDAR) meets NSA requirements for protecting confidential data and provides two layers of encryption even when the device is powered off or in an unauthenticated state. This means Tactical Edition devices can be used in classified or mission-critical environments while still providing a smooth user experience.

Galaxy S23 Tactical Edition and XCover6 Pro Tactical Edition both support serverless licensing, meaning less friction and more deployment flexibility in a wide range of operator environments.

Special applications for operators

These Tactical Edition smartphones excel with applications like the Android Team Awareness Kit (ATAK) and the Battlefield Assisted Trauma Distributed Observation Kit (BATDOK). ATAK and BATDOK have both been optimized for Android OS, providing an expanded and seamless user experience .

ATAK significantly enhances real-time situational awareness for operators through functions such as mapping, messaging, and geofencing. This enables all team members to access relevant information simultaneously on a single screen.

BATDOK gathers and disseminates real-time patient encounter information, allowing medics to monitor and track the vital signs of multiple patients. It facilitates the swift capture of comprehensive treatment histories, starting from the initial encounter through medical evacuation, and facilitates the communication of critical information to the next level of care.

Military tough

Galaxy S23 Tactical Edition is IP68 certified for dust and water resistance (submerged up to 5 feet for up to 30 minutes). Gorilla Glass Victus+, an Armor Aluminum frame, and a rugged military-grade case that can be chest-mounted or worn on the forearm make the S23 Tactical Edition functional and durable.

The XCover6 Pro Tactical Edition is duty-ready out of the box, and it also uses Gorilla Glass Victus+ paired with an Armor Aluminum frame. It’s IP68-certified and MIL-STD-810H compliant*, withstanding drops up to 5 feet and providing water resistance along with the capability to operate in a wide range of temperatures.

Both S23 and XCover6 Pro Tactical Edition devices provide a night vision mode to accommodate use with night vision optic devices, auto-touch sensitivity to work with gloves, and auto-rotating lock screens to facilitate use with flip-down chest mounts. There’s also external GPS support, which provides the command center with accurate location data from the field. For a more complete view of the battlespace and mission, an external image feed can connect to drone feeds and laser range finders can help increase the precision and effectiveness of close air support.

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Power to spare

The S23 Tactical Edition is equipped with a powerful 64-bit Octa-core processor and exclusive Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy chipset. The XCover6 Pro Tactical Edition has a 64-bit Octa-core processor paired with a Snapdragon 778G chipset. With lightweight designs and powerful computing capabilities, Galaxy S23 and XCover6 Pro Tactical Editions effectively advance the “One Device for all Missions” approach, supporting multiple mission apps and ensuring operators have access to vital information regardless of their location.

Power of DeX

These Tactical Edition devices support Samsung DeX, which offers an intuitive PC-like experience when connected to a larger display and keyboard. This flexibility is great for positions like command posts where personnel also have field assignments. DeX can also support in-vehicle operations, making it useful for military law enforcement units that would otherwise use a mounted laptop. With DeX, a single smartphone can support operations in the field, in the vehicle, and in the station — one device for multiple missions.

Galaxy S23 and XCover Pro Tactical Edition models are now supporting warfighters in some of the toughest and most complex mission environments.

Learn more about Samsung’s Tactical Edition line of purpose-built, operator-ready mobile devices.

*Passed military specification (MIL-STD-810G) testing against a subset of 21 specific environmental conditions, including temperature, dust, shock/vibration, and low pressure/high altitude. Real-world usage varies from the specific environmental conditions used in MIL-STD-810G testing. Samsung does not guarantee device performance in all extreme conditions.

Water-resistant in up to 5 feet of water for up to 30 minutes. Rinse residue/dry after wet.

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Chris Balcik

Chris Balcik currently serves as Vice President and Head of Mobile B2B at Samsung Electronics America. With over 26 years experience, including management consulting with the Department of Defense and other Federal clients, Chris has deep expertise in organizational transformation and the role of technology. Prior to his current role, he led Federal government sales for Samsung’s Mobile B2B division. Prior to that, he assisted public and private sector clients including the FAA, DNI and DoD on complex, large-scale systems engineering and technology transformations, concept of operations design, program management, business case analysis, and business process optimization. Prior to entering the civilian workforce, Chris was an Officer in the United States Air Force leading Command and Control support to military operations.

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