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Apple lands $159M government contract for iPhone, iPad

The New Zealand Police picks Apple -- over BlackBerry, Google, and Microsoft -- to hand out 6,000 smartphones and 3,900 tablets to its officers.

Apple's iPhone 5.

BlackBerry devices typically have been the go-to phones for government accounts, but that seems to be changing. Apple is increasingly getting into the lucrative business contract game.

The New Zealand Police announced today that it has sealed the deal for 6,000 police officers to get an iPhone and 3,900 officers to also get an iPad, according to The National Business Review. The contract is for 10 years and the police force expects to spend around $159 million on the initiative.

Apparently, the New Zealand Police chose Apple products over BlackBerry, Google, and Microsoft after surveying its officers, who said iPhones and iPads were the most useful tech tools for their line of work.

"The trial showed the most useful tools for officers were small personal devices (such as a smartphone) for making phone calls or text messaging, accessing email, and accessing information and photo databases, and a larger such as a laptop or tablet for staff who need to do more data entry," New Zealand Police Chief Information Officer Stephen Crombie told The National Business Review.

Apple also scored big this week when Home Depot announced its plans to ditch 10,000 BlackBerry devices and instead start handing out iPhones to its employees.

BlackBerry has had a rough few months as far as government contracts go. In October, the U.S. Department of Defense dropped its exclusive contract for BlackBerry and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency also announced it was dropping all of its BlackBerry devices and replacing them with Apple's iPhone.