Most government employees are issued sub-par smartphones for the sole purpose of saving money. According to a recent article published at ZDNet.com, however, government employees in Australia will have access to the Samsung Galaxy S5. Granted, this exclusive deal isn’t available to all government workers in Australia, but some of them will have the option to temporarily acquire, and use, Samsung’s latest flagship smartphone.
Samsung announced last week that it had achieved the certification necessary to supply their device to the Australian government. Current laws require smartphone manufacturers to acquire the Common Criteria Certification — a standard developed by the United States for protecting users’ privacy and data.
With Samsung now holding the Common Criteria Certification, they are free to sell their device to the Australian government, U.S. government, and even the U.S. military. We don’t know if government workers in the U.S. will have access to the Galaxy S5, but apparently government workers in Australia will soon have the device. ASD workers can use the device on an “unclassified basis,” meaning it can not be used to communicate/share confidential information.
But not everyone is thrilled at the idea of handing out Galaxy S5s to government workers in Australia. One criticism that continues to pop us is the cost. Being that the the Galaxy S5 costs around $600 without a contract, supplying thousands of workers with the device can generate a hefty bill. Guess who’s responsible for footing this bill? Yep, it’s Australia’s taxpayers.
To be fair, though, we really don’t know how much the Australian government is paying for their Galaxy S5. They could be paying the full price of $600 per unit (probably not), or they could be paying just a couple hundred bucks per unit. There’s been no official statement made by the Australian government or Samsung regarding pricing details of this contract.
“The ASD Evaluated Products list is a collation of evaluations ASD has conducted, including evaluations against the Common Criteria, or crypt evaluations of products. The device was evaluated by the US Defense Information Systems Agency. ASD recognizes the evaluation under the Mutual Recognition provisions of the Common Criteria Recognition Arrangement. The Protection Profile regarding the Samsung Galaxy S5 is for Unclassified use only.”, the Directorate said.
Do you think it’s a good idea to supply government workers with the Galaxy S5? Let us know in the comments section below!