iPad Pro Smart Folio vs Smart Folio Keyboard?

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i just got an 11” iPad Pro, and I’m torn on accessories. My first plan was the Smart Keyboard folio, as ive had the Smart Keyboard on all past IPP models. But seeing that the keys are right against the screen is concerning, as is the fact that the keys are exposed when it’s folded back. Add in being 1/4 the cost of the iPad itself, and I’m a bit wary.

My next option is the smart folio, which has a nice microfiber cover, as usual, for the screen. I’d then primarily use the on screen keyboard, as well as probably picking up a magic keyboard for more intensive work. This would come out around the same price, but may be a bit more versatile, and certainly a better typing experience.

What’s recommended? Have Smart Keyboard folio owners had any issue with the keys touching the screen while closed?
 

Carlos51

macrumors member
Oct 13, 2017
54
16
Argentina
i just got an 11” iPad Pro, and I’m torn on accessories. My first plan was the Smart Keyboard folio, as ive had the Smart Keyboard on all past IPP models. But seeing that the keys are right against the screen is concerning, as is the fact that the keys are exposed when it’s folded back. Add in being 1/4 the cost of the iPad itself, and I’m a bit wary.

My next option is the smart folio, which has a nice microfiber cover, as usual, for the screen. I’d then primarily use the on screen keyboard, as well as probably picking up a magic keyboard for more intensive work. This would come out around the same price, but may be a bit more versatile, and certainly a better typing experience.

What’s recommended? Have Smart Keyboard folio owners had any issue with the keys touching the screen while closed?
Hi,
No issues with the keys so far, either when closed or when fully folded at the back side of the iPad.
Regards,
Carlos
 

DoubleFlyaway

macrumors 6502a
Nov 16, 2017
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Would you say it’s worth the price over the Smart folio?
To me it is. I use the ASK folio all the time. I have a Smart Keyboard for my Mac mini, and it’s great, but I wouldn’t use it nearly as much with my iPad, because I would have to go get it, rather than it being always there with me and the iPad.
 
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Carlos51

macrumors member
Oct 13, 2017
54
16
Argentina
To me it is. I use the ASK folio all the time. I have a Smart Keyboard for my Mac mini, and it’s great, but I wouldn’t use it nearly as much with my iPad, because I would have to go get it, rather than it being always there with me and the iPad.
Agreed.
 

jazz1

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Aug 19, 2002
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To me it is. I use the ASK folio all the time. I have a Smart Keyboard for my Mac mini, and it’s great, but I wouldn’t use it nearly as much with my iPad, because I would have to go get it, rather than it being always there with me and the iPad.
I've got to adopt your habit of keeping my ASK attached. I just end up kicking myself when all of a sudden I don't have it onboard the IPP.
 

danniexi

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Jan 7, 2012
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it comes down to preference really.

i’ve been carrying my iPad Pro + Magic Keyboard to work everyday and ultimately prefer this setup as oppose to the Smart Folio Keyboard. The typing experience is better and the function keys tend to be useful. I also prefer to have the keyboard detatched at all times so I can simply pick up the iPad and use it without the keyboard in the way. The experience of touching the keys with the ASK when folded back is less than ideal for me. i think i’ll be returning the Smart Folio Keyboard this week.

That being said, there are still advantages to the ASK. The case is really well built and the magnets are extremely strong and sturdy (I currently have a third party folio case which leaves a lot to be desired). Having the keyboard there at all times is a bit more convenient. And even though I mentioned that I prefer the typing experience of the Magic Keyboard, the fact that I can basically type at the same speed with the ASK says a LOT about it (both keyboards I easily reach above 100+ WPM on a generic tpying test).
 

jazz1

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it comes down to preference really.

i’ve been carrying my iPad Pro + Magic Keyboard to work everyday and ultimately prefer this setup as oppose to the Smart Folio Keyboard. The typing experience is better and the function keys tend to be useful. I also prefer to have the keyboard detatched at all times so I can simply pick up the iPad and use it without the keyboard in the way. The experience of touching the keys with the ASK when folded back is less than ideal for me. i think i’ll be returning the Smart Folio Keyboard this week.

That being said, there are still advantages to the ASK. The case is really well built and the magnets are extremely strong and sturdy (I currently have a third party folio case which leaves a lot to be desired). Having the keyboard there at all times is a bit more convenient. And even though I mentioned that I prefer the typing experience of the Magic Keyboard, the fact that I can basically type at the same speed with the ASK says a LOT about it (both keyboards I easily reach above 100+ WPM on a generic tpying test).
I have the original battery Apple wireless keyboard and used it with an Incase origami style carrier. I did like to use it with my iPad Pro 12.9" 2018.

One thing I noticed is that the Apple wireless keyboard stayed connected, and I had to remember to turn the keyboard off. If I forgot I soon found out I could not use the on-screen keyboard. Maybe the keyboard would eventually "sleep" and break the connection?

It would be interesting to know if the newer, rechargeable Apple Magic Keyboard does that same thing?
 

danniexi

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Jan 7, 2012
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I have the original battery Apple wireless keyboard and used it with an Incase origami style carrier. I did like to use it with my iPad Pro 12.9" 2018.

One thing I noticed is that the Apple wireless keyboard stayed connected, and I had to remember to turn the keyboard off. If I forgot I soon found out I could not use the on-screen keyboard. Maybe the keyboard would eventually "sleep" and break the connection?

It would be interesting to know if the newer, rechargeable Apple Magic Keyboard does that same thing?
no idea. ive been using the Magic Keyboard (recharegeable with the Lightning Port). ive immediately gotten into a habit of turning it off (switch at the top) when putting it in my bag. when i get home (i.e. not doing work) i find myself never using the keyboard and always revert to the on-screen keyboard instead (sames goes for ASK, never used it when on the couch).
 
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no idea. ive been using the Magic Keyboard (recharegeable with the Lightning Port). ive immediately gotten into a habit of turning it off (switch at the top) when putting it in my bag. when i get home (i.e. not doing work) i find myself never using the keyboard and always revert to the on-screen keyboard instead (sames goes for ASK, never used it when on the couch).
This sounds more like my use case. If only apple would launch a smaller size magic keyboard in space gray!
 
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seajewel

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Aug 31, 2010
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The ASK has become an indispensable part of the way I use the Pro. I love that it’s very stable for lap use as well, but easy to take off if I want to just use the iPad on it’s own. I was torn at first because of price and yucky material but honestly the functionality is so good I would never ever live without it at this point. It’s always on my device except for the few times I just want to read a book or manga while lazing about in bed. I would just get a cheaper knockoff of the smart folio instead anyways. The ASK with its smart connection and stability is not interchangeable with any other option on the market whereas the smart folio is just an overpriced cover.
 

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To those of you with the Smart Keyboard Folio, have you noticed any screen wear/scratching from the keys?
 

seajewel

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Aug 31, 2010
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To those of you with the Smart Keyboard Folio, have you noticed any screen wear/scratching from the keys?
Not at all, but it certainly doesn't help the fingerprint issue. That said, fingerprints are really awful on the iPad pro with or without the keyboard folio. I just ordered Whoosh to see if it will help.
 

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Not at all, but it certainly doesn't help the fingerprint issue. That said, fingerprints are really awful on the iPad pro with or without the keyboard folio. I just ordered Whoosh to see if it will help.
I can deal with fingerprints, but scratches were what initially worried me with the Smart Keyboard. But now using the iPad without the keyboard, I find myself missing the more laptop like angle more than anything else.
 

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I pulled the trigger on the Keyboard folio last night. Unfortunately had to order it, as nowhere local had it in stock. But once I get it in a couple days I’ll update with my opinion. The standard folio I picked up will be getting returned as well.
 

jazz1

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I pulled the trigger on the Keyboard folio last night. Unfortunately had to order it, as nowhere local had it in stock. But once I get it in a couple days I’ll update with my opinion. The standard folio I picked up will be getting returned as well.
I have both. I probably should have gone keyboard folio only. Then followed up with a 3rd party cheap plain old folio. Too bad the Apple Store employees don't get commissions ;)
 

Porterhouse

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Aug 13, 2011
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I have them both as well along with a few knockoff cases. (I know; I’ve got a bit of a problem.) The regular folio was a recent addition; the magnets kept coming loose on the knockoffs, and I didn’t want to use the ASK 100% of the time.

I like the standard folio quite a bit. It helps I got a great price on eBay. I’m alternating it with the ASK, and so far, that’s the best solution I’ve found.
 
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dotdotdot

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Jan 23, 2005
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I have both - I prefer using the iPad with the Smart Folio but put the keyboard folio on whenever I want to type or do work on it.

The Smart Folio box fits the Keyboard folio too so I keep that box in my backpack and change on the fly.
 
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So I’m now typing from the Smart Keyboard Folio. The difference is staggering, and the feel of the device is so immensely different that I feel it can’t even be compared without it.

To those of you thinking about whether or not it’s worth it, just pull the trigger and enjoy your iPad Pro to its fullest, rather than trying for “good enough” with something less ideal. The experience is much better, and I’d go as far as saying actually worth the price.

I will say, however, that “desk position” on the keyboard is nearly useless. It’s such a steep angle that it doesn’t seem practical unless you sit very low/have a high desk. That being said, the normal position is excellent, and highly usable.
 

MacMandy

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Nov 13, 2006
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I’ve been using the standard folio with a magic keyboard from my iMac for a few weeks now, but I have to change bags frequently work/personal, and keep forgetting the magic keyboard. They finally had the ASKF in my local Apple Store in stock yesterday, so I’m trying it out. I have read the forums so I knew what to expect:

More weight - doesn’t bother me as I use a bag, and can easily remove it if I want to.
Not backlit - would be nice but Magic Keyboard isn’t backlit (although keys are white)
Keyboard position when folded back on itself - Will take some getting used to, but I’m confident after reading other posts that it will be okay, and the screen doesn’t get scratched when closing the cover.

It’s nice to be able to use it on my lap which I couldn’t do with magic keyboard or previous Smart Keyboard version (and I hated the hump and the origami faffing)

I personally like to see all of the gorgeous screen if I’m typing, and although the software keyboard is really good, seeing the whole screen and having a physical keyboard is a much nicer experience for me.

I’ve now got a couple of weeks in my return window to weigh up if the experience is worth the extra cost since the software keyboard or magic keyboard (when I remember it!) is ‘fine’.
 

mattshup

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Oct 31, 2017
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I will say, however, that “desk position” on the keyboard is nearly useless. It’s such a steep angle that it doesn’t seem practical unless you sit very low/have a high desk. That being said, the normal position is excellent, and highly usable.
100% agree! The “two position” slots are a waste of space and extra weight. “Desk position” is pretty much useless. Only time I’ve ever used it was when I sat back in my chair and watched a video.
 

RevTEG

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Oct 28, 2012
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To those of you with the Smart Keyboard Folio, have you noticed any screen wear/scratching from the keys?
I never had any screen issues on my first gen iPad Pro feom thw ASK. I’m running a glass screen protector on my current gen iPad Pro. NOT because of any keys on the screen concerns. I had a “once in a lifetime’ encounter with a small nail that was coming out of the wall beside my bed. I placed my first gen iPad down bedside the bed and scratched the screen. Long rambling short, I never had any issues from the end of 2015 until launch day of the gen 3 pro with the keys on the screen.
 

MacMandy

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Nov 13, 2006
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Manchester, UK
I returned the Smart Keyboard folio this morning. It just didn’t feel as neat as the folio only for my use, and the keys on the screen and when folded back did bother me. I have a magic keyboard and a MacBook Pro, so I can use either of those when heavy typing. The rest of the time, software keyboard is just fine.