Definitive guide to keyboards for iPad and iPad mini (Spring 2013)

Definitive guide to keyboards for iPad and iPad mini (Spring 2013)

Summary: There are lots of keyboards available for the iPad and a few for the iPad mini. This collection is the best of the lot based on hands-on use in the field.

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  • (Image: James Kendrick/ZDNet)

    ZAGGkeys Flex

    Those wanting a separate keyboard for the iPad will find the ZAGGkeys Flex to be an outstanding choice. The keyboard is slightly bigger than the other keyboards in this collection, and is very close to the size of a standard keyboard.

    The black carrying case of the Flex opens to become a stand for the iPad. The separate keyboard means that it can be positioned wherever the user prefers for typing.

    Since this is a separate keyboard, it can also be used with the iPad mini.

    Android tablet owners may want to give the Flex a look, as it can be used with those tablets, too. There is a toggle to turn the row of special control keys into keys for Android tablets.

    Dimensions: 9.4x5.0x0.75 inches; 11.3 ounces.

    $79.99 from ZAGG.

    Full review by James Kendrick on ZDNet

  • (Image: James Kendrick/ZDNet)

    ZAGGkeys Flex

    The separate keyboard and stand means that the iPad can be used in portrait mode with the keyboard.

  • (Image: James Kendrick/ZDNet)

    Logitech Keyboard Folio mini

    This new case from Logitech combines a portfolio style case with a little keyboard to turn the iPad mini into a real work system. This is accomplished by using nearly full-size keys on the little keyboard that sits in one side of the folio case. The keyboard is far narrower than keyboards for the larger iPad, but making the most-used keys larger, makes the Keyboard Folio mini easy to use for limited text entry.

    The folio case adds little bulk to the svelte iPad mini, and protects the tablet from daily bumps and bruises. It completely covers the iPad mini and opens to expose a small keyboard. The iPad mini attaches above the keyboard via magnets for typing; the connection is quite strong, and the assembly can be lifted by the iPad mini without separating.

    The keyboard is narrow due to the width of the tablet, but Logitech has taken an innovative approach to make it work. The most-used keys on the keyboard, aka the alphabet keys, are almost full-size compared to keyboards for the larger iPad. This makes typing very natural without feeling like the fingers are cramped. Lesser-used keys, such as punctuation characters, are smaller to make it all fit the narrow width.

    This keyboard is good for short text entry sessions, but those wanting to do heavy text entry should look at a larger keyboard, such as the ZAGG Mini 9 (next in this collection).

    Dimensions: 207x150x25mm (8.15x5.91x0.98 inches); 395g (0.87 pounds).

    $89.99 from Logitech.

    See the full review by James Kendrick of ZDNet

Topics: Mobility, iPad, Reviews, Tablets

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3 comments
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  • Another cruddy Slide Show

    ZD Net, James, you have totally failed your readers / clients in publishing a Slide Show article with no 'View as one page' link.

    You have also totally failed your advertisers / sponsors.

    Very few tech will tolerate the total waste of time that a Slide Show demands. as a result, we just go to he next article or another media publication that is less arrogant and more consumer friendly.

    YOU KNOW THIS !!

    Don't you ever listen to Sheldon when he quotes that a definition of insanity is doing the same thing in exactly the same way, over and over and expecting a different result?
    Leo Regulus
    • Cruddy slide show

      Must agree with Leo. In fact the entire article leaves everything to be desired. If Kendrick thinks his article is a "definitive guide" it's time for him to retire. ZDNet allowing this type of none guide to appear as a guide is ........... Oh hell, it's just junk.
      Bob.usa
  • Another keyboard option

    I just got my Crux Skunk ipad keyboard case and it is fantastic. Beautifully designed and made out of aluminum with finish matching the iPad, the keys have great feel. You may want to check it out for your next review.
    jsmith@...