CNET First Look
A husky keyboard solution for the iPadLogitech's simple and functional Keyboard Folio offers a keyboard plus iPad protection, but it's too thick for its own good.
Hi. I'm Scott Stein and I've been reviewing iPad keyboards and keyboard cases for a bunch of years now. I feel like since the iPad first came out and they're useful if you're going to type a lot on your iPad. Even though you can type on that screen, it's nice to have a Bluetooth keyboard and your options are to go with the detached corner, go with one that comes in a case and the Logitech keyboard Folio is the perfect example of why keyboard cases are great and keyboard cases are maybe not so hot. Now, it's interesting because Logitech made a really fantastic gadget. In fact, hey, it's right here. It's the Logitech Ultra Thin Keyboard and this was reviewed last year, it's a really slim, it docks in really nicely, very portable, keyboard feels great, it's really hard to beat. Now, what do Logitech do with their latest? Well, it got bigger, it got bulkier and in adding that case, you can see here it's become almost like a mini laptop and the iPad docks into this, this flexible plastic rubber bracket, magnets secure to the bottom of the case here. It can stay in one position or can fold flat for plane travel or can fold back around into a kind of a book type form. This is 1.3 pounds for just this. That's about the weight of the iPad itself. So, you're doubling the weight and you're really doubling the thickness to get a clean look. But it's really so bulky that you know, you wonder why it needed to be this way. For-- maybe for institutional use for kids because it has a nice sturdy, you know, feel. You feel like it could take a beating and it still work. It might be really useful in that regard. The keyboard is a little bit different and it's interesting because Logitech seems to experiment each time with a little tiny tweaks to the keyboard even though they had a great solution here. They keyboard has rounded, slightly convex keys, your keyboard fetishes like me, it means that I can, I didn't really hit the keys quite solidly as on the Ultra Thin Keyboard cover. Also the layout is a little bit different. They did some impression here to try to create a larger and wider key spacing. So, use a caps lock and tab keys have been combined with Q&A. theoretically that's fine but it creates a sense of a slight shift to the left, so I found I was fumbling for keys a little bit more than I normally would. Those are minor quibbles. One of the advantages here, hey, there's a nice little loop at the front that accepts a stylus if you're really in a styli or capacitive paint brushes, yes, there are those. All told this is a lot better built than most keyboard cases that I've seen. There are some that feel a little flimsy and there certainly some out there that don't have that great set of keyboards to go with that. So, Logitech is still above average but I think there's a little bit of a disappointment. If you really like a sturdy set on your iPad go type and then take a look at it. I'm Scott Stein and that's a look at the Logitech Keyboard Folio, available in black and several other colors, also for the iPad Mini.