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Google's Eric Schmidt: Why I love my BlackBerry

Google's chairman admits in an interview that he is still addicted to his BlackBerry, because he just loves, loves the keyboard.

Here he is in 2009, his BlackBerry discreetly hidden.
Greg Sandoval/CNET

Sadly, we never got to see the headline: "Steve Jobs: Why I love my Nexus 7."

Nor are we likely to be soon struck by the words: "Steve Ballmer: Why I use my iPhone in the bath."

Yet in a candid and refreshing interview, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt cheerily admitted that his own company had yet to drag his dextrous fingers away from his precious BlackBerry.

Speaking with the Guardian's editor in chief, Alan Rusbridger, at the Activate conference in India, Schmidt explained: "Look, I've tried to go cold turkey. I've tried to wear gloves all day. I've even tried screaming at Larry and Sergey that they should move to Canada. But nothing works. I'm addicted."

Actually, I cannot quite guarantee that those were his words. However, he did explain that he just adored the BlackBerry's keyboard.

It seems that the mere touch of that flirty QWERTY just gets him giddy every time -- even though there are other possibilities available, some with the glorious Android inside.

The Samsung Replenish is one highly affordable example.

Google hasn't previously been entirely draconian about what machines its employees must use. The Googleplex is famous for the open-minded articulation of its inhabitants.

Yet there will be the curmudgeonly who will sniff that Schmidt, a man who represents the company all over the world, should show an example. (New campaign from Canada: "BlackBerry. It's the Schmidt!")

What must Kim Jong-un have thought if he'd seen Google's chairman with the slightly passe phone on Schmidt's recent visit? I can just see him turning to new best friend Dennis Rodman and guffawing: "He pulled out a BlackBerry. My people get solitary for that."

I prefer to think that Schmidt is simply a man who takes deep persuasion. In the Guardian interview, for example, he also said that he thought the iPad Mini and Google's own Nexus 10 were "too small."

So who cannot admire a man who knows what he likes and doesn't care who knows what he likes?

Of course, it might well be -- though he has always denied it -- that Schmidt still sees himself in politics one day.

Perhaps the most famous BlackBerry user is President Obama. One of the first steps toward becoming president is to, as the experts have it, "act presidential."

I am not sure how good Schmidt is at basketball.