Obama ditching BlackBerry? White House reportedly testing Android devices

The White House has reportedly begun testing Samsung and LG devices, possibly indicating that President Obama is getting ready to turn his back on BlackBerry.
(Win McNamee / Getty Images)

The White House has reportedly begun testing smartphones from Samsung and LG, perhaps indicating that BlackBerry may soon lose one of its most high-profile customers.

Testing is only in the early stages at this point, but the White House internal technology team and communications agency are testing Android devices from the two South Korean phone makers, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cites an unnamed source.

The implementation of Samsung or LG phones is still months away, but this is the first indication that the White House is preparing to move away from using BlackBerry.

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“We can confirm that the White House Communications Agency, consistent with the rest of the Department of Defense, is piloting and using a variety of mobile devices,” a Defense Department spokesman told The Journal.

For now, there are no indications that President Obama will be switching out his BlackBerry, the Journal said. But as pointed out by the Verge, Obama will be in office until 2017, which could be enough time for his office to test and approve the use of devices other than those made by BlackBerry.

Upon entering office in 2009, Obama famously fought to retain his ability to use his BlackBerry. But the world has changed since then, and these days having a BlackBerry isn’t what it used to be. The Canadian company has fallen on tough times and seen its dominance of the smartphone market taken by Apple and Android devices.


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