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NOTICE:  The links to vendors / products on this page are an attempt to save you time searching for the specific item, by linking you directly to the item shown.  You will notice I have multiple [when available] vendors to choose from.  I have no personal preference as to who you decide to purchase from.  I am not endorsing any particular product or vendor, I'm merely informing you what works and where you can purchase a CAC reader.


Windows 8 Tablet iPhone imageiPad image Android logo
Windows Tablet Information     Apple iPhone / iPad Information    Android Information

CAC readers do exist for Android and Apple devices, but please know they cost between $69.99 - $396.00


iPhone and iPad users CAN use their CAC to access CAC enabled websites Now


Please be aware of this Memorandum on DoD Commercial Mobile Device (CMD) Interim Policy from DoD dated 17 January 2012.

Section 2.2.6 states:  Non-enterprise activated CMDs shall not process or store official DoD email.  Access to DoD webmail services shall follow policy statement 2.2.5. 

Section 2.2.5 states:  Non-enterprise activated CMDs shall follow existing policy when accessing web-based services authorized for external access, which stores sensitive DoD information.  Combatant Command/Service/Agency's (CC/S/A)'s are encouraged to implement technical controls that prevent sensitive DoD information from being downloaded and stored. 

Updated Memorandum dated 31 July 2012


The US Air Force went mobile, read two articles from 19 February 2013 at Defense Systems

Please sign up for the Free Change Detection service at the top of this page to be automatically notified when new information is posted on this page.  I will post information regarding these growing questions here as soon as I know about it.

Windows tablet information

Windows 8 Tablet


The Microsoft Surface Windows Pro originally went on sale on 9 February 2013.  This version has the ability to install and use regular Windows programs. 


The Microsoft Surface Windows RT went on sale 26 October 2012 and has an ARM processor and IS NOT able to install and use regular Windows programs.  You can check your Enterprise Email with a CAC reader after you install the DoD Certificates.


Microsoft no longer sells the Windows RT version of the Surface


Microsoft Surface User Guide (a 68 page guide written for both the Surface Windows RT & Surface Windows 8 Pro)


Six myths of Windows RT Revealed


The Microsoft Surface Windows RT will allow you to access sites like OWA (IF you have the "GEMALTO TOP DL GX4 144," "GEMALTO DLGX4-A 144," "GEMALTO DLGX4 128Kv2," "Oberthur ID One 128 v5.5 Dual," "Oberthur ID One v5.5a D," "G&D FIPS 201 SCE 3.2," or "G+D FIPS 201 SCE 7.0" CACs).  All other CAC types are incompatible.


Gemalto 144 CAC image GemaltoDLGX4-A 144 image
Oberthur 5.5 CAC image
Oberthur 5.5a CAC G&D FIPS 201 SCE 3.2 image

      Stop Gap CAC image



iPhone and iPad users can use their CAC to access CAC enabled websites

iPhone imageiPad image

Two companies offer readers and software for iPhones & iPads

  Thursby  |  Identiv

Thursby Readers and Sub Rosa for iOS


PKard Reader plug-in reader

Click picture to see a larger image

Thursby Metal Readers image

 PKard Reader includes Sub Rosa for iOS app from Thursby for $139.99


You will have to remove your phone's case to be able to plug in the reader.  Apple does not make a short extension, and one's I've tried do not work. Thursby shows some on their site.   So, if you don't use a case, it will work great.  If you have a case, you will need to add the time of removing your case to use it to the time it takes to use your reader on your iPhone or iPad.


iPhone cases are $149.99 and are available for 6, 6S, 7, & 8


NOTE:  If you Jail Break your iPhone, the Sub Rosa (formerly PKard for iOS) app will not work as it was designed.



iPad case

Click picture to see a larger image

Thursby iPad case image

 iPad case includes the Sub Rosa for iOS app from Thursby Software for $149.99


IPad Pros with a USB-C port [rather than lightning], you'll need this adaptor.



Some basic information:


Bundling clarification - "comparing apples to apples"

With Thursby PKard Reader secure browser licenses continue to be bundled at no additional cost with readers.  There are no annual maintenance fees.

As always, bundle = hardware + US certifications + US secure browser / authentication agent + US phone and email support + $0 “maintenance"

PKard Reader solutions with well over 1,000,000 U.S. CAC and PIV licensed users are the most widely deployed and tested in the industry.  Their foundation is the PKard Toolkit, which enables a secure CAC and PIV app ecosystem including S/MIME email, digital signing, VPN and more.  Only U.S. Government CAC/PIV solutions which are shipping today as listed.


GSA and volume pricing available directly from Thursby, or approved Federal resellers.

Much of the press on Thursby solutions is worked on several months ahead of publication, so isn't always completely up to date.


Thursby's Press Release

Identive iAuthenticate 2.0 with SubRosa middleware for OtterBox uniVERSE Case

 iAuthenticate iPhone CAC Reader
iPhone / iPad Reader
Sold by TX Systems

      TXSystems logo  


IPad Pros with a USB-C port [rather than lightning], you'll need this adaptor.

 Customize your iPad / iPhone

Understand the different Android versions and names


Android Information

Android logo 

Please know that even though CAC readers exist, they require an app to work with the Android OS.  There is only one company with a workable solution Thursby using their Sub Rosa Pro app


Thursby's Sub Rosa Pro Android Solution is available


Thursby Android CAC readers

Click links below to see larger images, to purchase, go to their website



Readers start at $24.99 each, app is another $79.99, totaling: $105.00

Android readers

DoD Smart phones and Tablets Online training

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Last Update or Review:  Monday, 10 May 2021 19:49 hrs


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