Next decision - to buy or not to buy Keyboard Folio...

ssledoux

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 16, 2006
1,606
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Down south
So I have the 11” pro now, and oh do I love it! Pencil on its way (can’t wait!!). To keyboard folio or not to keyboard folio?

Current setup is what I had with 2018 iPad - nice adjustable stand that holds the pads in its case (bought a cheap, basic case with a flip cover), and Bluetooth keyboard that’s similar to keyboard from an iMac. Makes a good desk setup, and I can also easily grab and go with the pad.

However, I LOVED my ASK on my 12.9s, and know I would likely enjoy the keyboard, so I’m torn.

Opinions?
 

simplynando

macrumors 6502
Aug 15, 2016
326
285
Las Vegas, Nevada
I just took the plunge and got the SKF for my 11 inch and I love it. I love the keyboard shortcuts that you can use that make it seem more of like a Mac (many of the shortcuts are the same). It's so seamless and I love the way it just attaches to the back. I know it's a lot of magnets, but it feels like magic. Lol. I bought a custom decal to cover the entire outside of the keyboard case because I'm not a fan of the boring gray and I love it even more. It looks like the Potions book from Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince!

There are a few things I really don't like, though. I don't like is how exposed the sides of the iPad are. The case barely extends further than the iPad and it's not enough to protect it...AT ALL. I think I'm going to get a slickwrap for the iPad so I don't end up with scratches or scuffs around the edges. Also, I find myself removing the keyboard when I'm just browsing because it adds too much extra weight and heft to browse comfortably and casually, so the wrap would make me a little more comfortable than it just being naked. I love the magnets, but i really wish Apple had made it an actual case that protects the sides.

Also, I don't care for the fact that the keyboard rests directly on the screen. I made the mistake (twice) of casually closing the folio and my heart dropped when I heard how hard the keyboard hit the screen. The weight is evenly distributed in the keyboard so it feels light, but I'm sure it has enough weight to do damage if you aren't careful. Those are of course my fault, but I doubt I'm the only one who has done it (or maybe I'm just the only one dumb enough to). Luckily there's no screen damage, but it was enough to make me order a screen protector that will be here soon. lol
 

CrystalQuest76

Suspended
Dec 14, 2015
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West Cost A Lot
That fold-able keyboard looks like a nice option.

I have been using a cheap 3rd off label bluetooth keyboard for a while. It has met my needs but it was bulky when carrying from desk to meeting room and such. I recently bought the Logitech Keys to Go and really like its thinness and battery charge. I like that it has a flick on power switch on the side so it does not accidentally turn on while bouncing around in my hand or in my bag. When I want the keyboard in hand its easy to carry and when i don't want it; its not there to get in the way the apple designed solution does. I like that it is so quiet to type on while in meetings.

It is also a much cheaper option than the Apple branded keyboards. I have given enough money to Apple executives.

Saving money is not a crime. As we have been reminded recently in the news; 4 out of every 10 Americans don't have enough money saved to cover a 500 dollar emergency or a two week delay in an earned paycheck.
 
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spacebro

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Oct 1, 2015
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I had the keyboard folio for the 2017 and have not felt the need to get one for my 2018. I use a regular apple magic keyboard when I'm at my desk using it for work or writing. The soft keyboard is very decent, even comparable if you put in some work learning to type on it. It doesn't seem worth it to carry around a double thickness iPad just to have a physical keyboard, but it is worth it to have a physical keyboard at your desk.
 
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RevTEG

macrumors 6502a
Oct 28, 2012
944
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San Jose, Ca
So I have the 11” pro now, and oh do I love it! Pencil on its way (can’t wait!!). To keyboard folio or not to keyboard folio?

Current setup is what I had with 2018 iPad - nice adjustable stand that holds the pads in its case (bought a cheap, basic case with a flip cover), and Bluetooth keyboard that’s similar to keyboard from an iMac. Makes a good desk setup, and I can also easily grab and go with the pad.

However, I LOVED my ASK on my 12.9s, and know I would likely enjoy the keyboard, so I’m torn.

Opinions?
If you loved the ASK then, in my opinion, you will love the new keyboard folio even more. I personally believe the keys are even better. I also used the ASK on my first gen 12.9. Now I use the keyboard folio on the new 12.9. I really like it.
 
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DoubleFlyaway

macrumors 6502a
Nov 16, 2017
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You know my opinion from other threads... I am a fan. I would prefer side protection, at least the cover extending slightly further, and i did prever the way the keys were covered in the previous generation. But i do love having this compact little package that i can put in my purse and have everything i need. As of now, for me this is by far the best option available. I use this much more than i would a keyboard that weren’t always right there with the ipad.
 

offEND

macrumors newbie
Nov 22, 2018
4
0
So I have the 11” pro now, and oh do I love it! Pencil on its way (can’t wait!!). To keyboard folio or not to keyboard folio?

Current setup is what I had with 2018 iPad - nice adjustable stand that holds the pads in its case (bought a cheap, basic case with a flip cover), and Bluetooth keyboard that’s similar to keyboard from an iMac. Makes a good desk setup, and I can also easily grab and go with the pad.

However, I LOVED my ASK on my 12.9s, and know I would likely enjoy the keyboard, so I’m torn.

Opinions?
I bought a Logitech keys to go for my iPad Pro 12.9. I think the feeling of the keys is better in ASK, but i can have a more protective third party case always on. Also i bought a logitech k380 for long typing sessions. I love the combo!

Edit: photos uploaded.

F9FDD70E-011C-4FF6-9613-D3B18F894EB0.jpeg 4560E62C-C69B-4D58-90EE-8D933AFF62DA.jpeg B4B4425A-D233-4D5A-A509-1726135D1C53.jpeg 430C5B11-DB11-40B3-A9AD-7B1150513F23.jpeg

Here you have another photo of the iPad Pro 11 that i had, and Logitech Keys to Go.....

0123C692-0EF8-46B4-83F6-19D0119556BA.jpeg
 
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Greenmeenie

macrumors 65816
Jan 14, 2013
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1,721
My sister bought the ask for her 11” ipad pro and loves it. As for me? i just have the regular folio type case. I much prefer typing on the virtual keyboard on my 11” ipad than use a physical keyboard. I have pretty big hands tho, and can type with my thumbs while holding it in portrait or landscape. But i also like to type with it on a desk using both hands on the virtual keyboard.
 

xxray

macrumors 6502a
Jul 27, 2013
917
940
What I did was buy a $11 magnetic case on Amazon that covers front and back and carry around the keyboard from my iMac separate when I need it. Gives me a physical keyboard and “desktop” setup with the magnetic case that folds into different positions, without having to add extra weight that a keyboard case would have. The keyboard feels way better than the iPad case ones too. On top of all that, I saved a lot of money doing it.
 
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Porterhouse

macrumors 6502
Aug 13, 2011
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USA
Personally, I really like the ASK. I know that not everyone's a big fan, but it's very handy. If you liked the previous ASK, you'll probably like this one as well.

You could always pick one up and try it during the return period.
 

ahostmadsen

macrumors 6502a
Dec 28, 2009
751
425
The only downside to the new keyboard folio is that it’s noticeably heavier than the previous version, because of the back cover. The silver lining to that is that it now enables use of the iPad as a real laptop, because it has a flat, stiff surface on bottom.
 
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ssledoux

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 16, 2006
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Down south
Thanks for the replies! My Bluetooth connection is having trouble so I’m afraid I’m gonna have to take my iPad to Apple. I’ll check the keyboard folios while I’m there. I really want to see how much difference it makes in bulk and weight.

I may just keep my current setup if I can get the Bluetooth to function properly.
 
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seajewel

macrumors 6502
Aug 31, 2010
345
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I'll add even though I am repeating myself a little: I didn't like the keyboard folio much when I first got it because the outer material feels decidedly yucky and non-premium. However, it really grew on me. I got used to typing on it very fast, I like that the material covers the keys so food and dust won't get stuck underneath, I like that it adds relatively little bulk (though it does add some weight, and especially to the 12.9 iPad Pro), but above all, I love that it is rigid enough to use on my lap without collapsing. I often found myself just using it on my lap to hold the iPad up even if I wasn't typing at all. And if you do a lot of typing on your iPad & move around with it, I think it is really the best that is out there, unless you're resigned to carrying around a separate keyboard. That said, it's expensive and not very nice to the feel. I ordered a yellow Alcantara skin from slickwraps today. Probably risky, given that I've seen lots of poor reviews of slickwraps, and yellow is a lighter color.. but I really liked the yellow and didn't like any of the other options. (A nice royal blue or navy would have won me over though and been easier to upkeep). I'll report back once I get the skin.
 

simplynando

macrumors 6502
Aug 15, 2016
326
285
Las Vegas, Nevada
I'll add even though I am repeating myself a little: I didn't like the keyboard folio much when I first got it because the outer material feels decidedly yucky and non-premium. However, it really grew on me. I got used to typing on it very fast, I like that the material covers the keys so food and dust won't get stuck underneath, I like that it adds relatively little bulk (though it does add some weight, and especially to the 12.9 iPad Pro), but above all, I love that it is rigid enough to use on my lap without collapsing. I often found myself just using it on my lap to hold the iPad up even if I wasn't typing at all. And if you do a lot of typing on your iPad & move around with it, I think it is really the best that is out there, unless you're resigned to carrying around a separate keyboard. That said, it's expensive and not very nice to the feel. I ordered a yellow Alcantara skin from slickwraps today. Probably risky, given that I've seen lots of poor reviews of slickwraps, and yellow is a lighter color.. but I really liked the yellow and didn't like any of the other options. (A nice royal blue or navy would have won me over though and been easier to upkeep). I'll report back once I get the skin.
I agree with all these points. It's so much easier to use on your lap now that it can hold itself up. It's also sturdy enough for me to leave it open and propped up and easily move it to another surface. I wanted to get an Alcantara skin as well but I saw that they tend to be a little more thicker than a regular decal, so I just got a custom printed one instead. Could you post a picture once you get yours?? I like how premium the alcantara looks!
 

seajewel

macrumors 6502
Aug 31, 2010
345
19
I agree with all these points. It's so much easier to use on your lap now that it can hold itself up. It's also sturdy enough for me to leave it open and propped up and easily move it to another surface. I wanted to get an Alcantara skin as well but I saw that they tend to be a little more thicker than a regular decal, so I just got a custom printed one instead. Could you post a picture once you get yours?? I like how premium the alcantara looks!
Will do! Someone posted a picture of the blue Alcantara skin on their keyboard folio in one of the threads here. It looked nice.
 

omelet1978

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Sep 22, 2012
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B41BF7B7-52F6-4F41-BD28-A847CA401A16.jpeg
Will do! Someone posted a picture of the blue Alcantara skin on their keyboard folio in one of the threads here. It looked nice.
I haven’t seen anything on Alcantara skins or anything like that. I put a skin on the outside of my keyboard folio. One of my main gripes about the folio is that it looks cheap, and for me personally being able to skin it made me like it a lot more
 
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seajewel

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Aug 31, 2010
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Here's a link to the thread showing the Alcantara skin applied to the keyboard folio: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/skins-stickers-for-smart-keyboard-folio.2156454/page-2
View attachment 817692

I haven’t seen anything on Alcantara skins or anything like that. I put a skin on the outside of my keyboard folio. One of my main gripes about the folio is that it looks cheap, and for me personally being able to skin it made me like it a lot more
Here's a link to the thread showing the blue Alcantara skin on the iPad SKF:

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/skins-stickers-for-smart-keyboard-folio.2156454/page-2
 
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Silver Idaten

macrumors 6502a
Jul 31, 2015
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Stratford, CT
So I bought the Keyboard Folio and the Smart Folio for my 11, and I think the Keyboard Folio is okay, just okay. It’s not as cool as the previous Smart Keyboards. Unfortunately I figured this out after the return period on them expired, but I discovered that I vastly prefer this setup:

- Smart Folio
- Magic Keyboard
- Fintie Magic Keyboard case w/folding stand

I love the feeling of an actual mechanical keyboard over the Smart Keyboard, and it pairs seamlessly when you turn it on. The Fintie case looks snazzy and has a folding stand that you can set up and is a perfect fit for my iPad with the Smart Folio. It also accommodates bigger cases, but I prefer the Smart Folio because it’s more compact and it magnetically folds on the back which the third-party cases do not. Plus, microfiber on the front and the back. Yes it’s two separate pieces but I keep everything in my tablet bag anyway, I have a sleeve for the iPad (because the folio has no side protection) and a bag/sleeve for the keyboard.

I’ve also discovered that it’s stupidly easy to scratch the underside of the Magic Keyboard (not that it matters), they must’ve used the same cheap plastic that they had on the 5C lol.
 
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simplynando

macrumors 6502
Aug 15, 2016
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Las Vegas, Nevada
Will do! Someone posted a picture of the blue Alcantara skin on their keyboard folio in one of the threads here. It looked nice.
I saw that post! That's how I knew that it was thicker than other vinyl type decals. lol. It looks nice, I'm just not sure about the extra thickness and possible weight added. The iPad + SKF is thick enough for my liking. Lol
 

seajewel

macrumors 6502
Aug 31, 2010
345
19
I saw that post! That's how I knew that it was thicker than other vinyl type decals. lol. It looks nice, I'm just not sure about the extra thickness and possible weight added. The iPad + SKF is thick enough for my liking. Lol
Yeah I have some concerns about added weight--I asked about that but never got a response in that thread. I'm taking the risk because it seems like it will be a nice texture rather than something that feels more slick/plastic-y.
 

DoubleFlyaway

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Nov 16, 2017
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View attachment 817692

I haven’t seen anything on Alcantara skins or anything like that. I put a skin on the outside of my keyboard folio. One of my main gripes about the folio is that it looks cheap, and for me personally being able to skin it made me like it a lot more
Nice. Here is mine. Functionally, I was happy with SKF, but I hate boring old gray.
 

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muzzy996

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Feb 16, 2018
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I like being able to skin the back of my phones and ipads . . . Not looking forward to having to do it to a folio once I do update to the next gen IPP.
 

kp98077

macrumors 6502a
Oct 26, 2010
938
237
I just got the apple keyboard it is pretty nice i must say! love how it protects the back and the thing doesn't flip out all over the place like the older model! lol
I find it VERY easy to type on.....I initially got the 10.5 pro but sold it to get the 11 such a difference. In every way really. It was worth the extra sacrifices...