Best Mobile CAC Readers for Each Operating System [UPDATED 2020]

Do you ever find yourself working on the go? Or needing to access CAC required information from your mobile device?

If not yet, there’s a good chance you’ll need to in the future. With many jobs and processes undergoing the shift to a more mobile and agile environment, you may find yourself in a bit of a rut if you don’t have the right CAC reader. And finding the best answer for your needs can be challenging.

But there’s no need to worry because HomeCACUse has done the legwork for you. We’ve gone through and tested many different solutions available and have found the best mobile CAC readers for each operating system.

#1. AIR ID 2 Bluetooth Contact Smart Card Reader: Overall Best CAC Reader for Mobile

If you’re truly looking for the best mobile CAC reader, turn to the AIR ID 2. Honestly, this is one of the best (if not the best) mobile CAC readers we’ve ever had our hands on. It’s also probably the best CAC reader we’ve ever handled period.

The AIR ID 2 is a revolutionary piece of tech for managing smart card accounts. It’s a Bluetooth powered reader that can connect your card to almost any prepared workstation 100% wire-free. No more long cords, sloppy workstations, or inconvenient dongles. And since it’s the size of a standard card carrier, you can literally wear it around your neck on a lanyard and still connect.


You may be wondering about the security of such a wireless device. Well, it’s just as secure as any other device if not more so. It’s equipped with AES 256 encryption to ensure your information maintains its privacy. Also, it’s got a nifty auto log-off feature if you stray too far from your workstation. So for instance, let’s say you’re connected to your workstation (PC, Mac, Android, or iOS device) and run off to catch a quick coffee break. But… you’ve forgotten to log out of your secured account. The AIR ID 2 will automatically log you out after crossing a certain distance to further protect you and your information.

This is easily our number one pick for the best CAC reader for mobile. The biggest downside to this unit is the price. While we understand that you get what you pay for, we do wish it just a bit within more people’s budgets. This kind of tech can really be a game-changer but only if more people can get their hands on it.  If you’re looking for our full review, read it here!

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#2. Identos Tactivo Mini for iOS: Best CAC Reader for iOS

If you’ve owned an iPhone, iPad, or Mac, you’ll understand the slight frustration that comes with having different connection ports. With Apple’s Lightning connectors, you need to get special adapters to plug in almost every single external device. And while Apple users–like ourselves–have come to terms with it, we might not have to for much longer.

The Identos Tactivo Mini for iOS is specifically designed with iOS users in mind. It comes standard with a Lightning connection–something that is difficult to find when it comes to CAC readers.


It’s not just a standard CAC reader either. The Tactivo Mini comes with a fingerprint sensor to add an extra level of security. And the best part about the sensor is that it actually works. Nothing’s more frustrating than a fingerprint sensor that doesn’t work. The only real downside to this unit is that it doesn’t come pre-installed with middleware. You’ll have to go out and subscribe to one on your own. We recommend SubRosa Pro. Looking for a full review? Learn more about the Identos Tactivo Mini here!

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#3. AvidCard CAC USB Smart Card Reader (Cable Type-C): Best CAC Reader for Android

We really like the AvidCard CAC reader. It comes in two different varieties as well: the standard USB and the Type-C USB connector–with our favorite being the Type C.

Everything nowadays is starting to swap over to the USB Type-C and it won’t be long until modern tech has fully phased out the older style connector. So it’s just best to upgrade as you go along. And chances are that if your mobile device can support a CAC reader, it’s probably a Type-C connector anyway.


This CAC reader doesn’t have all sorts of bells and whistles. And at first glance, it looks clean and minimalist–which is part of its appeal for us. It does what it’s supposed to when it’s supposed to.

The biggest issue with this reader is that it doesn’t support iOS–which really isn’t a problem if you’re going to be using this for Android. If you need something for iOS, go with either the Identos or the AIR ID 2. For a full review on the AvidCard CAC reader (Type-C), CLICK HERE.

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When it comes to choosing the best mobile CAC readers, these are currently the top contenders. Granted, none of them are perfect, and there’s still room for improvement. But these really stand out above other CAC readers of their class.

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