President Obama is still using his BlackBerry - Is he holding out for BlackBerry 10?

Obama BlackBerry
By Adam Zeis on 19 Dec 2012 11:37 am EST

President Obama's BlackBerry has been a topic of discussion for years. He is a die-hard user that hasn't been tempted to change his ways and switch to another device. The President as a BlackBerry user is the epitome of security, never really seen as well as in the image above from TIME photographer Callie Shell. The image is part of a collection of photos 48 Hours with Obama. This one is obviously our favorite since the BlackBerry Bold 9900 (or 9930?) looks so awesome sitting next to that red CLASSIFIED folder. 

While the President has remained a loyal BlackBerry user, we can only hope that he too makes the jump to BlackBerry 10. We don't see any reason why he wouldn't, and who better to stand behind your brand than the President of the United States? He can even hold on to his trusty holder since there should be more than one option available for BlackBerry 10 devices. 

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments

President Obama is still using his BlackBerry - Is he holding out for BlackBerry 10?


He'd wait for the N-Series...or would want the N-Series. I don't think the POTUS would have to "wait" for a device to release.

I agree. Though he might not upgrade at all, just stick with a device that is completely familiar, reliable. Unless of course he would need/get a lot of use out of the browser and LTE speeds.

BlackBerry is such an elegant solution, even within the protective holster, the red blinking light will notify when there needs to be action taken, otherwise he can go about his business. BAM!

Such a wasted opportunity. Perhaps the most powerful and famous man in the world uses your device and you don't use him in any form of marketing. If possible, that needs to change.

Am the President can't really be advertising products though. Somebody might then say it can be used as an avenue for bribes or pushing an agenda.

Is it really? Even if that is the case, you can create a commercial that merely hints at Obama but never mentions his name or image. Something along the lines of... "What does the most powerful person in the world use to manage his day to day life... BB10"

Every man thinks he is the most powerful person in the world. It's just in our nature. 2015 Obama leaves office, the USA is to expect another recession and BlackBerry could then use Obama to convince everyone to dip into their savings and buy a BlackBerry 11*.

I've got this image in my head of Obama getting his N-series phone and he gets all giddy and playing with all the new features and saying stuff like "oh cool! Check this out." to Biden or something. I wonder if Thorsten will push a phone to him in advance of the launch date. That would be a pretty awesome PR move

No, because the Obamaphone has a lot of security stuff that will not be available for BB 10 for quite a while. In fact, I suspect that his BB is still running on OS 6, because OS 7 doesn't yet have the highest level of certification (and never may...may go straight to 10).

The level of certification for ordinary Government use is one thing, the security applied for the highest level of classification is quite another.

To be the most Powerful Man in the World. You need the most secured and reliable device on Earth. Only Blackberry..!

There's still nothing out there that comes close to the security features that RIM offers (not to mention the fact that his has ultra super secret squirrel protection). He's not going to use a different brand.

i dont understand why he doesnt have a 10 already. I mean if its ready to go and functional that would be the person i would give it to as soon i have confidence it works. I guess wehave no idea where there are in the development of the qwerty 10? Obama should have one already, no speculation on "as a consumer i hope he sees the value of BB10 and when its available Q1 2013 blah blah blah" Rather, " Mr. President here is what you love only better, go get things done."

Who is to say that isn't then new BB10 device hidden in a 9900 style holster.

Maybe its a gift from RIM along with classified manual on all the mind blowing features that if were to fall into the wrong hands would bring chaos in the iStreets...

Maybe president signed an NDA or maybe the phone is in the picture but is invisible to human eyes.

My "speculation" is probably as good as yours.

apparently not if you think RIM should ask the President of the United States NOT to display that he is using a BB 10 device.

Even if he did get one early, they would clearly be spending time slapping on the extra level of security on top of it before giving it to him and realistically speaking, would he really want to rely on beta software rather than waiting until it was ready for him?

That isn't a run of the mill BlackBerry. RIM actually had to modify it to be used by the President. BlackBerry might be the best in security, but for heads of governments... well it needs to be even more secure.

When BB10 comes out, I doubt the President will get that phone. RIM will have to manufacture it just for him, like they did with the phone he has now.

I think it's great that Obama is using a BB for his non-classified communications, but the last thing you want is to give the POTUS a 'beta' device, even if it's for the non-critical stuff.

If you just have to have a mobile device for truly secret communications, then you need one of these:

And sorry to say, it appears that Samsung got the contract for the more mass-market upcoming version:

More info:

Ironically, the article you mentioned were written back in 2009, 3 full years before now, and BlackBerry is the one seen on POTUS' hands.
Confirming once and for all, those 'secure' devices are not the 'most secure', and they don't have style to boot!

The leader of the free world using his phone for non classified communication... Wow. I guess he really wasn't born in the U.S. Wow. That's real Get a life conspiracy theorist.


He may have been one of the influential people who've gotten a hands on demo with BB10.... You never know, FB might have made that happen..

Getting a BB10 in the hands of the President that is prepared and ready for the security he needs or having him at one of the release parties....should be a job dedicated to a handful of staff members at Rim.

Seriously, he gets re inaugurated on the 21st I believe, and BB10 drops literally 10 days later. If he isn't some sort of psuedo spokesperson, someone should lose their job.

The conspiracy Tea Party has infiltrated the ranks. To arms! I've got my musket n gunpowder!.. Er... Wait. Nope. It's a firecracker. Never mind.

I still find it funny on a campaign video he found it hard to use a staffers iPhone. I think he said he was a Blackberry man. He was making a call to a support and he did not have his phone with him.

The Blackberry, Obama edition, is a special encrypted model, change is not done overnight.
There are "extra" frequencies just outside the normal public cellular that the government uses and a few other changes that are done.
The Blackberry in question is just a bit thicker than its more common counterpart due to the several changes.