A U.S. Navy news and information mobile application scheduled for release later this month includes quick links for victims to report sexual harassment and for soldiers and veterans considering suicide to get help.
The app also collects Navy news stories, shows the position of Navy fleets on a world map and has an events calendar with important Navy anniversaries, the dates of officer tests and other information. It will be available on Apple and Android devices as well as Windows 8 phones and Chromebooks, according to designer Christopher Madden, manager for Navy media content services.
Madden previewed the app for reporters on Wednesday.
The military services have launched a handful of public facing mobile apps already, including an Army news and information app and a Navy recruiting app. Madden’s strongest influence when designing the Navy news app, though, didn’t come from another service or government agency but from the Bloomberg News app.
“Honestly, that’s what got my juices running,” he said. “Looking at how their app was laid out on the page.”
The Navy app will include regularly updated press releases and blog posts from across the service along with videos and “Flickr-like” photos that users can zoom into, he said.
The Navy would ultimately like to have a mobile-optimized website that could deliver the same content whether someone is reading it on a laptop, desktop, smartphone or tablet. The Navy’s main website is undergoing separate upgrades now, though, and officials didn’t want to wait to launch a mobile presence, Madden said.
The app is about 17 megabytes, he said.