Get a folding Bluetooth keyboard for $18.62

Sometimes little things can solve big problems, like when you need to type on your phone or tablet.

ZDNet's Business Bargain Hunter scours the web for great deals on computers, phones, services, and much more. Prices and availability are accurate at the time deals are shared. Some products and services may not be available outside the US. Follow BBH on Facebook and Twitter, where he's known as The Cheapskate.


battop-with-ipad.jpg

As long as you've got a flat surface, Battop's folding Bluetooth keyboard lets you get some work done -- even if all you have handy is a phone or tablet.

Battop

Ever tried editing a document on your phone? Or writing a lengthy email on your tablet? It's really tedious.

It's also sometimes necessary, like when your laptop isn't handy. Or won't fit on an airplane tray-table. And your presentation is in, like, an hour.

battop-keyboard-folded.jpg

The Battop keyboard is very compact when folded.

Battop

That's why I'm a big believer in packing a portable keyboard, something takes very little space in -- and adds very little weight to -- my carry-on bag, but delivers a full-size set of keys on demand.

Like this one: For a limited time, and while supplies last, Battop (via Amazon) has the Battop Foldable Keyboard for $18.62 when you apply promo code CW5JX9HF at checkout. It normally sells for $27, which is already a solid deal -- but $18.62 is better.

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The keyboard is available in your choice of five colors: black, white, gold, black/gray, and white/gray. (The code should work with any of them.) Out of the five, I'd say the white/gray version wins the Snazzy Award.

Weighing just over half a pound and able to operate for up to 40 hours on its rechargeable battery, the keyboard stows easily in just about any bag. When folded, it resembles a three-hole punch and measures just 9.4 x 2.2 x 0.7 inches.

Unfold it and it's a full QWERTY keyboard, complete with a row of number keys (something you might not expect given its size). It's a touch narrower than standard, but comfortable enough for touch-typing (unless you have really meaty paws).

Better still, it has a built in stand to hold your phone or tablet upright. That's actually a rare feature in a lot of mobile keyboards. Just don't expect to use it in your lap, as it doesn't lock open; it needs a hard, flat surface.

The Battop works with Android and iOS devices, of course, but also Windows tablets. So if you bought, say, a Microsoft Surface and don't want to fork over another $130 for Microsoft's keyboard, this can take its place. (Not saying it's as good, merely that it's compatible.)

And speaking of the Surface and tablets of that ilk, I think this might actually be a better solution than a keyboard case or cover, which can add significant full-time bulk. Here, you whip out the keyboard when you need it, stow it when you don't. My only complaint is there's no clasp or catch to keep it shut when folded. But that's easily solved with a couple rubber bands.

Battop backs the product with a 12-month warranty -- possibly important given that a few Amazon buyers cited reliability issues. For what it's worth, I've used one on and off for the better part of year, with no issues to speak of.

What do you think?

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