Senior sergeant John Price holds up a new iPad and iPhone, both of which are part of a new technology rollout. Photo: Phillip Rollo.

iPads save police time


Allowing police to use iPads and iPhones will increase efficiency by 30 minutes each day, according to a Nelson sergeant.
As part of a new device rollout, 6500 frontline officers were given an iPhone with a further 3900 given an iPad to use on the job. The Nelson officers included in this rollout were given theirs this week, and Blair Hall, who coordinated the project, believes it will help keep police in the community by reducing time in the office.
By using iPads and iPhones, police will be able to access more information at their fingertips, view jobs and events, do personal checks without having to go through a communication centre, take photos at the scene and in time will be able to do most paperwork on the devices. “It makes it much easier and during the trial staff said it saved them half an hour a day or half an hour a shift just by having it with them.
“We can check people on the side of the road, confirm the identity a lot easier so it’s harder for people to give us false details and there are a lot of other advantages,” says Blair.
The time freed up by being more efficient will go into prevention activities, which was the whole drive behind the move.
With technology evolving all of the time, Blair says the rollout should provide a strong foundation in the years to come.
He also adds that the software in the Apple products are specifically designed for police with “several layers” of security.  They have heavy duty protection cases which will allow them to be used in “all elements” of weather. “They’re not bulletproof or anything like that though,” he jokes.
While they are restricted to frontline staff only, Blair says others would benefit from another rollout later this year.