Microsoft All-in-One Media keyboard review: A low-cost keyboard combo for home theater or home office

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The Good For a modest $30, the Microsoft All-in-One Media keyboard includes a built-in touchpad, physical volume controls, and WIndows 8 shortcut keys.

The Bad The lap-spanning keyboard feels cramped, it lacks a backlight, and it's designed for right-hand users only.

The Bottom Line The Microsoft All-in-One Media keyboard is a keyboard-plus-touchpad combo for home theater PCs that is both low-cost and simple to use.

7.5 Overall
  • Design 7
  • Features 8

This keyboard-plus-touchpad combo (the official list price is $40 or £35, but it can be found for less online) is lightweight, with a solid feel considering the price. The keyboard has a matte black finish, which I like since shiny finishes tend to show more fingerprints and dust, and this is made to be touched. Black is the only color available, while some other similar products come in multiple colors.

This is not a Bluetooth keyboard -- instead, it connects via a small USB dongle. It runs on two AAA batteries (supplied) and has a small compartment on the bottom next to the batteries to magnetically store the dongle for travel. The battery door is easy to open with one thumb, which is handy if you've struggled to get a battery door open or had to get someone with long fingernails to help. It also has a physical on-off switch on the right side to conserve battery life when not in use.

Sarah Tew

Touchpad response was good, except for using two fingers as a right-click, which often took multiple tries. However, the pinch-to-zoom and two-finger scroll both worked well. As a keyboard that's meant to be used on the lap, it seems to work best when the touchpad is directly over the thigh for support.

There are right and left click zones located on the bottom of the touchpad, and there is a physical left-click button on the left side that's convenient for dragging windows and files.

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