NYC police upgrading from paper notepads to an iPhone app

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The NYPD already issues police officers iPhones.
The NYPD developed its own iPhone app to let officers write activity logs while on duty.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

New York City police officers will soon use an iPhone application to record their daily activities. The officers previously used paper memo pads for these notes, going back to around 1900.

The NYPD’s switch to an iPhone app for taking notes is yet another step in the force’s modernization using Apple devices.

NYPD makes better use of iPhone

Officers will track their own activities with iPhone software, taking witness statements and noting down details of arrests, according to The New York Times.

NYPD officers did the same with paper notebooks, but now the information will become easily available in digital format. Prosecutors use the activity logs made by police officers as evidence in criminal trials. Soon, they will be able to access the crucial notes much more easily. And because the memos will be typed, not handwritten, law enforcement will face fewer problems with reading the writing.

“It gives us the abilities we did not have before, when memo books were left in officers’ lockers and we didn’t have access to a vast amount of information,” Deputy Chief Anthony Tasso, head of the NYPD’s Information Technology Bureau, told the Times.

The software that officers will use after the transition on Feb. 17 was created by the New York City police department for its own use.

The NYPD won’t have to issue iPhones for this task, as the officers already carry them. The city began equipping police with Apple handsets back in 2017. The force now employs 37,000 iOS devices.