Microsoft Wedge Keyboard Review
I blog from my iPad, which means a lot of typing. Typing on the iPad is something of a challenge using the on screen keyboard. I have used an Apple Wireless Keyboard for a while, and quite enjoy it. However, while it is small, it’s not really portable. Carrying the Apple keyboard with an iPad is not convenient.
A while back I saw the Microsoft Wedge Keyboard at the store. I played with it a bit and thought it might be a passable alternative to the Apple keyboard. Also, I liked the case that doubles as a stand for a tablet. On a whim, I bought it.
Since I’ve been using the Apple keyboard for over a year now, this review will be a direct comparison of the two.
The keyboard itself is nice, though small. It’s about 3/4 inches shorter than the Apple keyboard. Consequently the keys are closer together, which might be a factor for those with larger hands.
The keys have a good tactile response. They feel similar to the Apple keyboard, though their sound feels a little more plastic. They are about the same stiffness, which is to say not very. They are not really mushy though, but have just about the right amount of resistance. If you like the feel of the Apple keys, you will probably like these as well.
The layout of the special keys is a little different than the Apple keyboard, which is to be expected.
- The arrow keys are smaller by consequence, but I touch the screen to move the cursor.
- The Alt and Command/Window keys are also transposed on the left side, and the right side Windows Menu key is inactive compared to the right side Command and Alt keys on the Apple keyboard.
- The Fn key and Ctrl key are transposed on the left side and Ctrl is missing on the left side.
Like the Apple keyboard, the batteries sit on the underside and prop up the keyboard. The angle is very similar. The batteries however are AAA rather than AA. I haven’t seen any regression in battery life, but I’ve only had the keyboard for about a month.
Last, I do like the power button on the Microsoft keyboard. The most annoying thing about the Apple keyboard is when it becomes active from jostling and my iPad starts playing music in my laptop bag. The Microsoft keyboard can be powered off so it doesn’t accidentally activate.
The wedge stand is what really sets the Microsoft keyboard apart. It serves two main functions. The first is as a cover for the keyboard.
The second is as a stand for your tablet while typing.
The stand is made of a smooth rubber. It has a stiff middle seam which folds to the desired angle and two lips hold the tablet in the stand.
The middle seam folds to allow the tablet to sit at any angle. This is nicer than most iPad covers, which only hold the tablet at a set of prearranged angles.
Since the stand is an accessory to the keyboard, the iPad (or other tablet) doesn’t carry around any excess baggage when the keyboard isn’t in use.
The Microsoft Wedge Keyboard is a nice companion to any tablet. The keyboard has a nice feel and works well, though it could be cramped for smaller hands.
The true difference is the cover/stand that comes with it. By being an accessory to the keyboard rather than a tablet case, it leaves the tablet to be as portable as you would like.
The Microsoft Wedge Keyboard retails for $79.99, but online shows street pricing of about $50.00.