- Apr 12, 2001
When the iPad Pro launched, Zagg had a third-party keyboard ready to go for the device - the Messenger Universal, an affordable universal keyboard designed to fit a wide range of tablets as large as the 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
As a simple universal keyboard, it has the benefit of being readily available for purchase and it's relatively cheap compared to other options, but there are some definite downsides to the Messenger Universal that may prevent it from being a viable option for some people.
Rather than taking advantage of the Smart Connector on the iPad Pro, the Messenger Universal connects over Bluetooth like any traditional Bluetooth keyboard, pairing via the Settings app on the iPad Pro. I had no problems with setup and there were no loss-of-connection issues during my time testing the keyboard.
The Messenger Universal consists of a magnetic Smart Cover-style flap that props up the iPad and an accompanying full-sized keyboard. It doesn't double as a case or a cover for the iPad like the Logitech CREATE or Apple's own Smart Keyboard -- it's strictly a keyboard and a stand. Because it's made for a range of different devices, the Messenger Universal can be paired with other tablets and smartphones in addition to the iPad Pro.
When not in use, the keyboard folds up folio style with the cover portion protecting the keys, so it's fairly compact for travel. It is as wide as the iPad Pro at 12 inches, so it's going to take up a fair amount of space in a bag or backpack, and it's also just over a half an inch thick. The outside cover of the keyboard is a soft water-resistant material that'll protect the keyboard from rain and spills, and the keyboard itself is made from a lightweight plastic.
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Article Link: Zagg Review: The Messenger Universal Keyboard for iPad Pro Is a Good Value, but Has a Few Drawbacks