Will President Obama Soon Tote an Android?

President Barack Obama may soon lose his beloved BlackBerry. ThatEUs because White House officials are testing smartphones from rival handset makers, including Samsung and LG, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Citing EUa person familiar with the matter,EU the Journal reported that the White HouseEUs internal technology team and White House Communications Agency, which is a military unit responsible for ObamaEUs communications, is testing the devices. That said, any shift is still EUmonths away,EU the paper noted, and thereEUs no concrete evidence Obama would have to give up his device.

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

As Secure as BlackBerry?

If the federal government moves away from BlackBerry, it would be a major blow to the Canadian handset maker considering the state of the company and its current market position. According to market research firm IDC, BlackBerry only holds about 0.6 percent of the North American smartphone market.

"We value the long-term relationship weEUve had with the White House and have been securing their mobile communications for more than a decade," BlackBerry said in a statement sent to CBC News. "Other vendors such as Samsung and LG still have a long way to go to catch up to meet the governmentEUs stringent requirements and certifications."

Or do they? SamsungEUs Android-based Knox incorporates key technologies patented by the National Security Agency (NSA). And the Department of Defense has approved Knox-enabled devices, including smartphones and tablets, for use by the U.S. government and military officials within DoD networks. The DoD security requirement guidelines for mobile operating systems are one of the highest security standards in the world.

EUSamsung Knox delivers fundamental security at the platform level, while leaving the...

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