Bluetooth keyboard thats affordable

Discussion in 'iPad Accessories' started by heavy2healthy, May 4, 2012.

  1. heavy2healthy macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2009
    I just got a cheap one from amazon for 17 dollars and the space bar doesn't work. Is there an ok one for around 30 bucks that you would recommend?
  2. heavy2healthy thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2009
    Tried a $30 one that sucked goes back tomorrow.
  3. ElDogman macrumors 6502


    Aug 8, 2008
    this is $10 more, so its not within your range

    seems to have good reviews, but i'll post the one that's the most critical of it:

    comfortable to type on, easy to pair, but low quality manufacturing, April 7, 2012
    Amazon Verified Purchase

    After reading several great reviews about this keyboard, I figured I couldn't go wrong. I've owned mine for about 3 or 4 weeks now, and have used it pretty much every day since, switching frequently between my iPhone 4S and iPad 2. It is pretty comfortable to type on and pairing it back and forth between two difference devices hasn't been a problem at all.

    Device Pairing
    Repeated use with the same device, it remembers the device and pairs on its own when powered up and starting to type. Switching devices is as easy as making sure the computing device is in discovery mode and then pushing the "connect" button on the keyboard. A 4-digit code pops up on the device. Enter it and hit ENTER/RETURN, and you're paired.

    For a compact keyboard, it's pretty comfortable to type on. The keys are flat and shallow to press, which is standard for compact keyboards, bluetooth or not. If you've ever typed on a compact keyboard before and felt comfortable doing so, this should feel just as comfortable. It is slightly smaller than a standard keyboard, in terms of the square size of the keys and overall width of the keyboard from left most key to right, but it hasn't been trouble for me to switch back and forth between this one and a full size computer keyboard. I can touch type on it with minimal accidental key presses.

    Style and Color
    I like the black color of the keyboard - black has always been an attractive color for me and it's less likely to show dirt and grime. The white lettering of the keys is a bit faint compared to other keyboards of the same color scheme. The white lettering isn't as easy to see in environments that are not as well lit, when a full size keyboard with white lettering on black keys has been easy to read in the same conditions. It really should have brighter white lettering on the keys. Additionally, the glossy finish (of the non-key surface) will reveal scrapes, scuffs, grease smears and fingerprints. It's a stylistic choice that I don't care for, but if you're into glossy tech and don't mind some fingerprints and smears, then it shouldn't be any worse here.

    Manufacturing and Durability
    For a $20 compact Bluetooth keyboard, this really isn't too bad. The problem is that I paid $40 for it, which makes it harder to overlook its manufacturing shortcomings. My keyboard came warped. It doesn't sit perfectly flat on a flat surface. The upper right corner doesn't make contact with the surface, which causes some unwanted vibration when typing. It's not much, but it is noticeable and at when viewed at an angle, the upper right "leg" pad clearly isn't making contact with the surface. Because the keyboard is bendable (not as a feature, but because of materials it is made of), I've tried to un-warp it by bending it in the opposite direction for periods of time. This helps for a while, but over time it slowly returns to its not quite flat seating position. I seem to have minimized the gap, but it's still there and does annoy me a bit. When seated on a cloth surface, such as our dining room table that has a nice table cloth on it, there is no vibrate to typing and the experience is better for it.

    Final Thoughts
    The keyboard not sitting perfectly flat, with all four pads touching the surface, when seated on a flat surface is my biggest gripe about the keyboard. I've been able to minimize it, but I shouldn't have had to try to un-warp the keyboard.

    Occasionally, the first letter typed after a short pause will result in a doubling of the letter. It doesn't happen often, but is a little annoying.

    The "DELETE" key does not function as it should on a Mac or PC keyboard. It does the exact same thing as the BACK SPACE, deleting characters to the left of the cursor, rather than to the right. This may be a property of iOS and not the keyboard. I haven't tried it on a full computer, so I'm not sure. It's not a big deal to me.

    I like that the F1 key is also the "Home" key for iOS devices. It comes in very handy and I use it often, as I tend to switch between apps a lot for reference when doing a lot of writing. Other useful keys include a mute button, volume up and down, play/pause, and show/hide (onscreen virtual) keyboard. These are all along the top row as double-purpose F keys.

    It doesn't feel as solid or nearly as well crafted as the official Apple Bluetooth keyboard, nor is it as attractive (even though I prefer black to gray or silver), but it's still comfortable to type on and not a bad option. The Apple Bluetooth keyboard is definitely more of a premium product with a superior feel, constructed better, etc. (I played with one at an Apple store), but it also comes with a premium price tag (about $30 more), so it depends on what you're comfortable paying for a compact, Bluetooth keyboard. The Amazon Basics Bluetooth keyboard *does* fall short of my expectations in regard to its somewhat shoddy manufacturing for a $40 device, but it's not bad. I'm being a bit more harsh on it because of price point. I feel it should have been better built and easily *could* have for that price. All in all, I've been using mine very frequently since it arrived and I enjoy typing on it... when it's not bouncing slightly because not all 4 of the pads are in contact with the table surface.
  4. heavy2healthy thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2009
    Thanks, I think I'm going to save up for a clam case .

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