That source is incomplete. No need to get in a fuss about deals that haven't even fully materialized yet.
The deal to buy Apple tablets was first reported by NextGov, which noticed a memo on the Federal Business Opportunities Web site saying the AMC wants to purchase "a minimum of 63 and a maximum of 18,000, iPad 2, Brand Name or Equal devices." AMC's public affairs director, Lt. Col. Glen Roberts, clarified the report, stating the commend "is looking for a tablet device, not necessarily an iPad."
Military officials like Birchenough hope to get Apple technology into the hands of their crew members soon, but Apple's iOS operating system has not yet received security certification from the National Institutes of Standards and Technology. Experts estimate that it would take anywhere from nine months to a year before it was certified. They believe iOS will be approved as early as August.
In any case, it is highly unlikely that the Air Force would spend millions on a foreign tablet(whatever that actually means in today's outsourced world). Take a look around an Air Force installation some time. What computers do you see? Pretty much HPs and Dells as far as the eye can see. So likely the choice is between the iPad and the Xoom. And as much as I love my Xoom, I have to admit it has had serious problems with input lag(mostly alleviated by the ICS update). As for those advocating an e-ink reader, well I can only imagine that manuals and charts are merely a first step. Once the technology is there, it makes sense to begin writing military specific applications for it, especially on a cargo plane. A tablet would be nice for calculating weight and balance.Edited by Scars Unseen - 2/8/12 at 3:29pm