(Article courtesy of Tactical Life)

There’ve been two major developments in the world of Taser. First, the Arizona-based company has announced it is changing its name to Axon, after its line of body cameras. Second, it’s launching a new program to equip every police officer in the United States with one of said body cameras — along with the accompanying hardware, software, data storage and support — free of charge for an entire year.

Why the new name? Well, CEO and Founder Rick Smith said it’s a way of reflecting the company’s evolution from “a less-lethal weapons manufacturing company” into a “full solutions provider of cloud and mobile software, connected devices, wearable cameras, and now artificial intelligence.”

Smith added that Taser would remain one of Axon’s flagship products, but now as a “single focused product brand for our suite of Smart Weapons.”

As The Verge points out, Taser sales are still strong — making up three quarters of the company’s revenue in 2016 — but the revenue from body camera products nearly doubled last year, along with the revenue from Evidence.com, which is Axon’s cloud-based system that stores data – from body cameras to audio records – while “streamlining data management and sharing.”

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