By Paul Mooney
Two things are pretty much universal across all branches and specialties of the United States military: you always have way too much to do and you usually have to carry a whole lot of gear to get it all done. Being overburdened on (at least) two levels is a hallmark of serving in uniform. So why not add some great military technology capabilities to a piece of gear you already take with you everywhere you go? Downloading these military apps onto your cell phone will make it an invaluable piece of your everyday kit.

Commissary Rewards

(iOS, Android)

Cost: Free

A caveat right off the bat: a lot of the reviews for this app are a bit on the “meh” side, with most complaints being that it’s not the most well-designed piece of software. But when it’s working right (which will hopefully be more frequent in the future as it’s updated and upgraded), it’s the ultimate one-stop digital coupon repository for discounts on literally anything and everything sold by your post’s commissary. Save loads of dollars and cents on food, household goods, kitchen supplies, and more at what’s already a cheap place to get all that necessary stuff.

Military Pay

Cost: Free

A handy little product from the folks at Military.com, this app makes it a snap to monitor exactly how much money you have coming your way each month. All you need to do is put in your info and update it when necessary. You can use it to keep track of your base pay, BAH, BAS, and any other additional bonuses you’re entitled to (flight pay, hazard pay, etc) in one handy place. Keep track of your finances and make monthly budgeting a whole lot easier.

Tactical NAV

Cost: $8.99, plus available in-app purchases

There are plenty of great military-type navigational apps on the market, but this one is consistently considered one of the best. Designed by veterans specifically for tasks often required by those in the armed forces, it adds a whole lot of handy features to an already impressive GPS app. And they’re adding new ones all the time. This is easily one of the most comprehensive navigation tools on the market and will come in handy whether you’re at home, in the field, or downrange on deployment.

Military 24/7

Cost: Free

The Defense Visual Information Distribution Service (DVIDS) is, if you don’t know, the DoD’s official news and information service run by Defense Media Activity (DMA). Probably most recognizable as the source for any and all official photographs and videos across all branches, they also have an app aimed at keeping you up-to-date on the latest official defense news stories from around the world. It’s easy to read, easy to share articles, and also includes access to all their regularly added, super-moto pics and vids.

Army First Aid

(iOS, Android)

Cost: $1.99

Built with the US Army First Aid Manual as its foundation, this all-in-one app for basic military medicine could very well wind up saving a life in the field, at home, on a hike, after an accident, and who knows where else. With supplemental materials like guides to poisonous animals and a fitness calculator included, this app will turn your phone into an invaluable resource in nearly any emergency. And all for less than two bucks. Smartphones have made everyone’s lives easier over the last few years. But, as a service member, you can make yours even more handy in your day to day life. Whether you’re splinting a broken bone or looking to save some bucks on groceries, these apps can turn your phone into a valuable tool for any situation.




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