Barack Obama has been president for so long that when he first ran for the office, there were not one, but two BlackBerry controversies.
When he became president, he had to fight the Secret Service in order to continue using his BlackBerry, a fight he ultimately won.
Meanwhile, back during the 2008 campaign, Republican nominee John McCain’s chief economic adviser, Douglas Holtz-Eakin called the BlackBerry “the miracle John McCain helped create.” It was a circuitous, Al Gore-helped-invent-the-Internet sort of argument, related to McCain’s service on the Senate Commerce Committee and championing of technology, but it still drew chuckles. That’s because McCain was famously computer-illiterate, and also because… the BlackBerry is a product of Canada.
Now, in Year Seven of the Obama presidency, we’re still talking about his BlackBerry.
The subject came up in an interview of the president by top tech journalist Kara Swisher of Re/code, against the backdrop of the Cybersecurity Summit at Stanford University. The 25-minute interview touched on everything from cyber hacks to STEM education to the president’s relationship with Silicon Valley, but at the end Swisher brought up the question of which gadgets Obama still uses. And yes, he’s among the few and the proud who continues to use a BlackBerry.
Obama told Swisher that he still uses the BlackBerry for messaging, “mainly because I’m so restricted in what I can do.”
He also watches sports highlights on his iPad, as well as “most of my non-work-related stuff.” He added that his daughters use iPhones, and that while he has yet to use wearable devices, he is interested in getting a Fitbit, or possibly an Apple Watch once it is available.
See the full interview here; the gadget discussion starts around the 23-minute mark: