We were told tablets are the future, the replacements for laptops. We saw them in numerous science fiction films and television shows watching in amazement at the world without keyboards, we only had to press a few buttons and things would happen around us. Now we are living in that world, surrounded by these amazing devices where the world around us responds to these fantastic tablets.
The natural progression of this technology means that inevitably they get smaller and more powerful, which causes a bit of a problem. Not everything can be used by pressing one button, it needs more detailed commands. Even though the provided keyboard on tablets are perfectly responsive and useful, nothing really beats a physical keyboard which is where the Brydge iPad Mini keyboard is a great addition to the iPad Mini.
Designed to only be used with iPad Mini, Mini 2 and Mini 3 this keyboard looks fantastic. It fits in seamlessly with the design of the provided iPad and perfectly sized so when closed it looks like a little laptop. “Forged out of a single piece of high grade aluminium for added strength and a premium feel” as stated by the box is hard to disagree with, enabling to look and feel like a Apple product. Even connected to to keyboard it is very light, much lighter than my Macbook Pro and not much heavier than my iPad 2. So it looks great and it is easy to carry around, easily fitting into most handbags and bags without taking up too much space.
Set up of the device could not be easier. The keyboard comes with a little card explaining how to attach, pair, and charge, each in four simple points. I do use a number of Apple products day to day, however I do usually get a bit frustrated when heading into the settings of my Macbook. With the Brydge keyboard it was quick and very simple, connecting via Bluetooth. All you have to do to physically connect the iPad Mini is slide it into the shims, or just squeeze them (it says gently on the instruction card but I had to give it a bit of a harder squeeze) to give a tighter fit.
After everything set up the only thing left to do is get used to using the keyboard. It helps if you are used to the Apple keyboard set up, everything is just a bit smaller and more compact. I am using it to write this review, I had not used they keyboard before and my typing speed is pretty much the same making the same number of mistakes I usually would. The backlit keyboard helps if you are stuck writing emails in a dark and dingy office, and is a nice touch in keeping in line with the Macbook keyboard. Also, according to the box the keyboard has a three month battery life, I would love to test that out but I have only been given an iPad Mini for a couple of weeks!
So, the Brydge keyboard looks great, works great and feels great, the only concern is that unless you are using your iPad Mini to write emails and press releases it would be a bit unnecessary. However, the Brydge keyboard gives you a lot of flexibility in terms of where you can work, if you are the entrepreneur who runs back and forth to meetings this would certainly be a lightweight, good looking option.