iPad 10.5" iPad Air Smart Keyboard is the same as the old iPad Pro one

EugW

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Apple no longer sells the Smart Keyboard for the 10.5" iPad Pro, but they have a new listing for a Smart Keyboard for the 10.5" iPad Air that is also listed as compatible with the 10.5" iPad Pro.

Well, it turns out it's the exact same keyboard, but Apple has just rebranded it. It even has the same part number, MPTL2LL/A. Reviews on the site for it are actually for the old keyboard with the iPad Pro.
 

shinseiromeo

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Aug 8, 2017
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Apple no longer sells the Smart Keyboard for the 10.5" iPad Pro, but they have a new listing for a Smart Keyboard for the 10.5" iPad Air that is also listed as compatible with the 10.5" iPad Pro.

Well, it turns out it's the exact same keyboard, but Apple has just rebranded it. It even has the same part number, MPTL2LL/A. Reviews on the site for it are actually for the old keyboard with the iPad Pro.
Not sure why they're calling this the air. They should call it what it is, the iPad cheap-o model. All they've been doing with iPad the last few years is selling lower quality products with outdated tech at a lower price. The iPad gen 5 and 6 are lesser quality iPad Airs. And now the 'new' 10.5 is just a gimped 10.5 iPad Pro with a cheaper screen and less speakers.
 
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casperes1996

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Not sure why they're calling this the air. They should call it what it is, the iPad cheap-o model. All they've been doing with iPad the last few years is selling lower quality products with outdated tech at a lower price. The iPad gen 5 and 6 are lesser quality iPad Airs. And now the 'new' 10.5 is just a gimped 10.5 iPad Pro with a cheaper screen and less speakers.

That would be fewer speakers.

But yes, it's a cheaper model iPad. If you want a top-end iPad, there's still two Pros to chose from. It is not the cheapest iPad though. It's a mid-range option. So the Air naming is sort of in-line with the MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro naming scheme
 

Hym tix

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Sep 21, 2012
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iPad Pro Lite probably didn't fly with Tim. "Lets just call it the iPad Air"
[doublepost=1553276825][/doublepost]or:
"the 11 Pro is not getting enough sales. I think it is too similar to the 10.5 Pro"

"You're right. Stop production on the 10.5 Pro. Put cheaper components in it and call it part of the iPad Air line"

*high fives* at Cupertino
 

MRISX

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Oct 2, 2016
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What is your opinion of the keyboard? Worth to have as a case even if you use is occasionally?
 

Shanghaichica

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Apr 8, 2013
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Yeah I imagined it would be considering the dimensions of the new air are the same as the 10.5 pro. Well if I need to replace my pro keyboard at least I can buy this one.
[doublepost=1553328520][/doublepost]
What is your opinion of the keyboard? Worth to have as a case even if you use is occasionally?
When I first got my iPad Pro 10.5 I got the pencil with it and held off on getting the Smart Keyboard. I only use the pencil for colouring in. I got the Smart Keyboard 5 months after I got the iPad as a Christmas treat for myself. I use the Smart Keyboard everyday. It’s very rare that I use the iPad without the keyboard. Typing on a physical keyboard is a much more pleasant as the on screen keyboard is too wide on the bigger iPad. It’s also good as a stand when watching movies and videos or web browsing. It doesn’t add much weight and I can easily balance it on my lap or the sofa.
 
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3.5jackandairpods

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Mar 20, 2019
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What is your opinion of the keyboard? Worth to have as a case even if you use is occasionally?
Personally I hate the Apple keyboards and love myself travel. I even bought a wireless mechanical Logitech keyboard for my Mac mini over the magic keyboard. I think the Logitech slim combo is a good case because t offers protection, key travel, shortcuts, function row, kick stand, and back lighting for cheaper. Not for everybody though because it is kinda bulky. I don’t mind because of the functionality.
 

axantas

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Jun 29, 2015
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What is your opinion of the keyboard? Worth to have as a case even if you use is occasionally?
The 10.5 keyboard is absolutely ok. It is a cover with optional keyboard. I still own the 10.5 Pro and use it ocasionally if I need to type a lot. Not using it, it just adds a couple of mm to the cover.

I would not get the keyboard for the 11 inch though. It is a keyboard, misused as cover if you just flip it open (cover) and do not use the keyboard. You always have the keys on the outer backside of the iPad. Irritating, but - I must admit - better for frequent users.
 

3.5jackandairpods

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Mar 20, 2019
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The 10.5 keyboard is absolutely ok. It is a cover with optional keyboard. I still own the 10.5 Pro and use it ocasionally if I need to type a lot. Not using it, it just adds a couple of mm to the cover.

I would not get the keyboard for the 11 inch though. It is a keyboard, misused as cover if you just flip it open (cover) and do not use the keyboard. You always have the keys on the outer backside of the iPad. Irritating, but - I must admit - better for frequent users.
That’s what I love about it. I’m fidgety and pressing the keys is awesome
 

dgdosen

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Dec 13, 2003
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Well, it turns out it's the exact same keyboard, but Apple has just rebranded it. It even has the same part number, MPTL2LL/A. Reviews on the site for it are actually for the old keyboard with the iPad Pro.
Ha! Did they change the price?
 

tps3443

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Jan 24, 2019
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Not sure why they're calling this the air. They should call it what it is, the iPad cheap-o model. All they've been doing with iPad the last few years is selling lower quality products with outdated tech at a lower price. The iPad gen 5 and 6 are lesser quality iPad Airs. And now the 'new' 10.5 is just a gimped 10.5 iPad Pro with a cheaper screen and less speakers.
There is nothing wrong with apple doing that. A lot of manufacturers will sell last years high end, as next years midrange with only slight changes.
 

EugW

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Got the keyboard. Mini review here:

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/ipad-keyboards-key-spacing.2174641/#post-27219024

Bottom line is that while it is technically a (full-size) keyboard, the key spacing is 18 mm, not the 19 mm that is found on Macs and the 12.9" iPad Pro.

It's reasonable, but still doesn't fell anywhere as nice as typing on a Mac keyboard, mainly because of the key spacing but also partially because of the feel of the keys, although the feel is OK.

Key spacing is identical to the 11" iPad Pro's keyboard, so there is no advantage to the 11" in this regard.

Adds quite a bit of weight though of course.
 

tripleburst

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Sep 19, 2018
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Got my keyboard for the 10.5” and a back cover. I think I’ll leave it off if I’m at home and attach it for travel or as needed. For me, it’s a luxury to have at the price, but the form factor can’t be beat. And if I ever decide to get the Air if it goes on a great sale, I'd already have a keyboard for it.
 
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EugW

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The Verge just published their iPad Air review:

https://www.theverge.com/2019/3/27/18282956/apple-ipad-air-2019-review-ios-features-specs-price

Funnily enough, Apple shipped him the keyboard for the iPad Pro 10.5” for the review. The review box still says iPad Pro, so I guess it’s older stock before they updated the packaging.

Also, he prefers the 10.5” keyboard over the 11” keyboard, since it is more flexible for orienting the iPad (even though it only has 1 standard view instead of 2).
 
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WilliamG

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Mar 29, 2008
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The Verge just published their iPad Air review:

https://www.theverge.com/2019/3/27/18282956/apple-ipad-air-2019-review-ios-features-specs-price

Funnily enough, Apple shipped him the keyboard for the iPad Pro 10.5” for the review. The review box still says iPad Pro, so I guess it’s older stock before they updated the packaging.

Also, he prefers the 10.5” keyboard over the 11” keyboard, since it is more flexible for orienting the iPad (even though it only has 1 standard view instead of 2).
Funny. I prefer the 11” keyboard by a mile. The design, ease of use, aesthetics etc are all leagues ahead of the, 10.5”, as well as the stability.
 

EugW

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Funny. I prefer the 11” keyboard by a mile. The design, ease of use, aesthetics etc are all leagues ahead of the, 10.5”, as well as the stability.
For aesthetics, do you mean the hump when the keyboard is closed? Cuz when open, they look exactly the same.

As for stability, on a table they are also exactly the same. I don’t know about on a lap though since I don’t use mine that way.
 

WilliamG

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Mar 29, 2008
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For aesthetics, do you mean the hump when the keyboard is closed? Cuz when open, they look exactly the same.

As for stability, on a table they are also exactly the same. I don’t know about on a lap though since I don’t use mine that way.
I did not find them exactly the same. My brother has the 10.5 Smart Keyboard. Even he agrees it’s a night/day difference in terms of aesthetics, speed of setup, and stability etc. The 10.5 more easily wants to fall back on itself when not on a flat surface. And while slouching in bed, the furthest back position for consuming media is leagues ahead of the folded back position on the 10.5 which is wholly unstable unless on a flat surface.

I mean to each his own, but the older design looks so dated and lumpy by today’s standards, too.
 

StarShot

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Mar 31, 2014
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What is your opinion of the keyboard? Worth to have as a case even if you use is occasionally?
I wouldn't have an iPad if I didn't have an attached keyboard. I just got my 10.5" Pro and the keyboard 3 months ago. The one thing I don't like about the keyboard is it doesn't support placing the iPad in Portrait mode. I normally use landscape mode, but prefer portrait mode for reading online newspapers, etc.

With the keyboard power source coming directly from the iPad, there is NO portrait mode available. My previous iPad Air was paired with a Logitech keyboard that had slot for either mode.

And yes, I think the is worthwhile to protect the screen from scratches when you're "knocking" about with it jamed in a backpack or whatever.
 

WilliamG

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Mar 29, 2008
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For aesthetics, do you mean the hump when the keyboard is closed? Cuz when open, they look exactly the same.

As for stability, on a table they are also exactly the same. I don’t know about on a lap though since I don’t use mine that way.
Forgot to mention, - holding the iPad Pro 11” and folding the keyboard back (it magnets in place), is super awesome, too.
 
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EugW

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Forgot to mention, - holding the iPad Pro 11” and folding the keyboard back (it magnets in place), is super awesome, too.
Everyone has their own preferences. It's not a big deal for me either way since my choice is wholly dependent on the iPad I'm getting, and I got the 10.5" specifically for the lower cost (after it was discontinued).

However, the most common complaint I've heard about the 11" model is that when folded back, the keys are exposed. With the 10.5" model, when folded back, it's a flat surface.

Both are held in place when folded back by magnets, although in my case it doesn't really work, because I have a thick TPU case on the back so it doesn't stay in place. Irrelevant though for me since I don't like holding the iPad with keyboard on. I just remove the keyboard if I plan on holding the iPad in my hands.
 

WilliamG

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Mar 29, 2008
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Everyone has their own preferences. It's not a big deal for me either way since my choice is wholly dependent on the iPad I'm getting, and I got the 10.5" specifically for the lower cost (after it was discontinued).

However, the most common complaint I've heard about the 11" model is that when folded back, the keys are exposed. With the 10.5" model, when folded back, it's a flat surface.

Both are held in place when folded back by magnets, although in my case it doesn't really work, because I have a thick TPU case on the back so it doesn't stay in place. Irrelevant though for me since I don't like holding the iPad with keyboard on. I just remove the keyboard if I plan on holding the iPad in my hands.
Right, the keyboard stays in place with the 11” case, since it’s a keyboard case/all-in one. I love that. Never cared about keys being exposed since it’s so compact.