Review: Logitech's Slim Folio Pro Offers a Lower-Cost Alternative to Apple's Smart Keyboard Folio for iPad Pro

Discussion in 'Guides, How Tos and Reviews' started by MacRumors, Apr 9, 2019.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple makes a keyboard designed for the 11 and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models, the Smart Keyboard Folio, but some people dislike it because of the thin keys, the lack of key travel, and the high price tag. For those who don't like the Smart Keyboard, Logitech has designed the Slim Folio Pro, a new keyboard case available for the 2018 iPad Pro models.

    Logitech's Slim Folio Pro is more affordable than Apple's Smart Keyboard, with the 11-inch version priced at $120 and the 12.9-inch model priced at $130. For comparison's sake, Apple charges $179 for its 11-inch Slim Folio Keyboard and $199 for the 12.9-inch model.


    Design wise, the Logitech Slim Folio Pro is a lot thicker than the Apple Smart Folio Keyboard and it adds quite a bit of weight and bulk to my iPad. I am not and have not ever been a fan of thick cases that add a lot of extra weight to my devices, and for my iPads, I almost always go case free and use a Smart Cover. With my iPad Pro, I've been using Apple's Folio, which is already more thickness than I like.


    If you're like me and prefer devices with thin cases or with no case, the Logitech Slim Folio Pro probably isn't going to be what you're looking for, but let me go into a bit more detail on how it works and how it looks on the iPad.

    Like the Smart Folio Keyboard from Apple, the Slim Folio Pro is available in dark gray. It would be nice to have color options, but the gray is an appropriate neutral color. The Slim Folio Pro connects to the iPad Pro using Bluetooth, so you're going to need to set it up in the Settings app the first time you use it. After that, though, it connects quickly when you put it in typing mode and start to use it.


    There's a base rubber and plastic case that the iPad Pro fits into, which provides protection for the iPad when it's not in use. There's thick rubber at the corners and on the left side, but on the right, there's an open space because that's where the Apple Pencil 2 goes for charging purposes. The top and bottom are also left open because of the speakers and the USB-C port.

    Click here to

    Article Link: Review: Logitech's Slim Folio Pro Offers a Lower-Cost Alternative to Apple's Smart Keyboard Folio for iPad Pro
  2. DrJohnnyN macrumors 65816


    Jan 27, 2010
  3. robjulo macrumors 65816

    Jul 16, 2010
    Much better quality and at a lower price than the Apple product.
  4. Pagemakers macrumors 68020


    Mar 28, 2008
    Manchester UK
    For me it’s too heavy and a very ugly fit around the screen.
  5. pdaholic macrumors 65816


    Jun 22, 2011
    I can’t go back to Bluetooth keyboard connections.
  6. WoodpeckerBaby macrumors 6502


    Aug 17, 2016
    But it’s not magnetic it’s not as good looking, just like ones on Amazon
  7. Populus, Apr 9, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2019

    Populus macrumors 6502a


    Aug 24, 2012
    Valencia, Spain.
    An Apple smart keyboard with backlight would be awesome. If there's something I miss from it, it's the backlight on the keys. And yes, I like how they feel when I type in it.

    Still without the backlight, I much prefer the Apple smart keyboard folio, why? 1) Because of the slim profile, lightweight, and no battery needed (thanks to the smart connector. 2) Because of the great convenience, and ease at attaching and detaching the iPad from the keyboard. I change pretty often from keyboard mode to book mode (with the smart keyboard folded in the back side of the iPad) or quick detaching it from the case. With the smart keyboard folio I can do this easily in less that 2 seconds.
  8. lakerchick4life macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2007
    Gonna buy this case for my iPad Pro 11 just waiting for it to become available so I can use UNIDAYS code to get 25 percent off, so far its not working guess since its a pre order(Will apparently be available on April 17th)
  9. miniroll32 macrumors 65816


    Mar 28, 2010
    I find it a little ironic that Apple’s Smart Keyboard ‘accessory’ is better designed to withstand crumbs/dust than the one built-in to the current MacBooks.
  10. Klae17 macrumors 65816


    Jul 15, 2011
    How does
    It compare with the Type + for the iPad Air 2? I loved that thing!

  11. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    Sadly I had to stop reading when the thickness and weight was brought up.

    I am in the same camp as those who like thin and light iPad workflows. Don’t want to much to carry on the days i don’t need the MacBook.

    Otherwise, I’d just carry the MacBook.
  12. jonnysods macrumors 603


    Sep 20, 2006
    There & Back Again
    Just not as tight looking as the apple ones, a bit too bulky.
  13. lubbenz macrumors newbie

    Oct 5, 2015
    Really funny to call that thing „slim folio“.
  14. Force332 macrumors member

    Mar 13, 2011
    Was there a reason Logitech couldn't use the smart connector? Having to include a battery in the keyboard and using bluetooth seems like a silly decision. That's what the smart connector is for.
  15. lakerchick4life macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2007
    since this does NOT have the smart connector, how does it charge? Does it come with a cable you have to plug in to charge it, I know silly question just had to ask, never had this one before
  16. jclo Editor


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2012
    Charges via USB-C, doesn't come with a cable. You can use the one you use to charge your iPad Pro.
  17. RevTEG macrumors 6502a


    Oct 28, 2012
    San Jose, Ca
    I got mine in and have used it a few days now. I had the previous model for my first gen 12.9.

    First impressions.

    I like the new material. Feels much better than the previous one.
    I like that it allows charging the Apple Pencil.
    I like that it offers a place to store the Apple Pencil. Keeps it from getting knocked off in my bag.
    Keys click great like the previous.
    Backlit keys are great.
    Haven’t had any issues with the Bluetooth connection.
    Can charge from the iPad with a USB-C to USB-c cable.
    Goes in and out of the case pretty easy.
    Function keys.

    Cover doesn’t come off like previous model.
    No (Surface like) kickstand like the previous model.
    Only offers one viewing angle unlike previous model.
    Volume and power buttons are somewhat difficult to use.
    It doesn’t double the thickness. (This wasn’t as bad on the previous model since the keyboard cover could be removed while still offer back protection)
    Needs to charge since it doesn’t use the smart connector.

    I personally prefer the kickstand on the previous model. I do a ton of international flying and liked how I could type with backlit keys, then simply remove the cover and continue using the kickstand for watching videos without the keyboard taking up tray table space.

    Two of the corners cracked (after very extended use) on my previous model.
    The new version uses better material/design on the corners.

    Will I keep it?
    Yes. I fly enough overnight international flights that I need backlit keys.

    Will I use it as my everyday carry case?

    I also have Apple’s Folio Keyboard and will continue using it when I don’t need backlit keys.

    However, the Logitech Slim Pro fits a need in my travel workflow that makes it work the cost for me.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 9, 2019 ---
    It charges with the exact cable your iPad Pro uses. You can also charge the keyboard with your iPad using a USB-C to USB-C cable.
  18. squizzler macrumors member


    Feb 11, 2019
    You Kay
    Right, so.. you chose to spend 800$+ on an iPad and then opt for cheaper alternative accessories to save a couple of bucks? Cheap skate.
  19. jlc1978 macrumors 68020


    Aug 14, 2009
  20. Zimmy68 macrumors 68000


    Jul 23, 2008
    Ahhh, so I can ignore this? Thanks!

    What is the super secret reason why no one uses the smart connector?
    The only other company that did was Logitech and now they are out.
    I assume Apple must charge a license fee or something but I would think that would make it out in the news.
    What is the point of a smart connector if no one uses, including Apple.
  21. jlc1978, Apr 10, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2019

    jlc1978 macrumors 68020


    Aug 14, 2009
    I would guess a large driver is Apple's licensing requirements along with royalties (info about fees requires an NDA):

    Manufacturing License Features

    Technical specifications
    Sample quantities of MFi components
    Development/testing tools
    MFi logos With Apple approval
    MFi certification
    Mass-production quantities of MFi components
    Mass-production manufacturing
    Submission of sales, inventory, forecast reports to Apple
    Developer Technical Support (DTS) incidents
  22. lakerchick4life macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2007
    Thanks SO much for answering so many questions about this item
    As far as connecting with bluetooth, does the keyboard case ever disconnect from bluetooth..I know with my beats wireless headphones sometimes it will disconnect and be a pain to connect again, hopefully that is not an issue with this keyboard..when you say the volume buttons are difficult to use, how come? I see on the keyboard there is no ESC button not like its really needed just seems weird..what do you mean kickstand, I see from the photos on their web site there is something holding it up..this would be my first logitech product sorry for so many questions, maybe u can post photos of it so we can see it that would be cool :) how would I know when the case needs to be charged, just like with the apple pencil it will show as battery life dying? If the keyboard is NOT in use, like the ipad is completely turned off does the case battery life still die or does it remain as whatever it was when I turned it off..I know with the pencil even with it not in use it does drain
  23. RevTEG macrumors 6502a


    Oct 28, 2012
    San Jose, Ca

    I have my iPad out of the case now and it shows the slim pro as disconnected under the Bluetooth settings. I’ll put it back in the case and check how fast it reconnects for you. The previous model Logitech Slim Combo keyboard used the smart connector so the Bluetooth is new to me as well.

    The keyboard offers a volume button on the function row so that’s easy to use. The Case covers the iPads actual volume and power buttons. The material thickness of the case makes pressing those buttons more difficult. However, it’s not like it’s so hard to be a deal breaker. Many cases that cover the factory buttons make it a little more difficult.

    As for as the kickstand.. that was on the previous Logitech that was for the older generation pros. The previous model had a rear case with a built in kickstand. Picture the kickstand on the Surface Pro. The kickstand on the previous model allowed the viewing angle to be adjusted to whatever angle one wanted. This new version doesn’t have that style kickstand. However, the viewing angle isn’t bad.

    The case has a battery level indicator light.

    As for as if it stays on, I don’t believe that it does. When not in use I believe it goes to “sleep”. Let me see if I can check on that more for you.
  24. lakerchick4life macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2007
    Awesome thank U SO MUCH really appreciate it
    I have this case right now,aps,518&sr=8-2-spons&th=1
    and even with this case that has a reasonable kickstand, the volume control button on the right side is VERY difficult to press, same with the power button on the that how it is with the logitech case?
    Does the case have a plastic feel, Im more into the plastic feel of it I guess that's just me
    Im glad that the case itself has the volume button on the function row in fact that is MUCH easier for me since I know generally these cases cover up the volume on the side and make it difficult to press
    So the case itself doesnt drain like the pencil does..because I know with my apple pencil 2, I can charge it up to 100 percent, turn off the ipad completely, and after a few days when I turn it back on the pencil does drain somewhat due to lack of use, not sure why I guess its normal
  25. Elian_Gonzalez macrumors member


    Mar 17, 2016
    Can you tell me how much it weighs and how bulky it is? I didn't get a clear indication of those two points.

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