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iPad Keyboard Review: iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard Review
      #46185 - 03/18/14 12:24 PM

The iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard is a portable keyboard that works with any Bluetooth device including smartphones and tablets. The wireless keyboard has built-in Bluetooth 3.0 and a rechargeable Lithium Ion battery. It comes in five colors as well as a built-in smartphone and tablet stand.



Design

The iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard is one of the smallest portable wireless keyboards we've seen on the market. It folds into a 5.7 x 3.4 x 0.7-inch body and when it's open, the length of the keyboard doubles into 11.4 inches. The keyboard has silver colored housing and comes in five interior colors including red, blue, pink, black and white. The keys are white and have no backlight. The keyboard has only two control buttons: the power slider and the Bluetooth Connect button. There are also two LED lights next to the buttons, indicating power and charging status and Bluetooth connectivity. The keyboard has a micro USB charging port on the side and comes with a charging cable.



The iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard also comes with a stand that looks like a protective sleeve for the keyboard when not in use. You can use the stand to prop up your smartphone on the front sliding smartphone holder or your tablet in the slot on the stand, or both at the same time, though the keyboard can only work with one device at a time. The slim keyboard is also light to carry, adding 7.4 ounces if you take the stand or 5.4 ounces if you don't.



Bluetooth and Battery

The iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard has built-in Bluetooth 3.0 and works with any device that supports Bluetooth HID profile. We tested the keyboard with several smartphones and tablets including the iPhone 5s, the LG G Flex, the iPad Air, the Samsung Galaxy tablets; and the only device the keyboard couldn't connect with was the Nokia Lumia Icon Windows phone since HID isn't supported. The keyboard can pair with multiple devices but can only work with one at a time. The keyboard can wake up the device when you tap on a key and it can reconnect after sleep.



The iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard has a built-in rechargeable Lithium Ion battery and comes with a charging cable. The keyboard takes a few hours to charge and has up to 40 hours of runtime and a month of standby time.



Keyboard

The iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard has 66 keys with mostly standard layout. The keyboard has chiclet style keys and the 11.4" length of the keyboard gives the keys some room to have good separation. Your fingers won't feel cramped when typing on this keyboard. Both Shift keys on the keyboard are double sized and there are basic function keys for three mobile OS's including iOS, Android and Windows. The function keys are reduced in size and they carry quadruple functions: numbers, symbols, Fn keys as well as multimedia playback, search, Home launcher and screen lock functions.



Typing on the iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard is surprisingly easy. The center divide between left and right hand keys didn't pose as much of a problem in our test, but the slightly off-set "N" and "M" keys did cause errors in touch typing almost every time. The shortcuts on the keyboard worked mostly fine, at least with universal functions such as search and media playback. You can switch to the OS your phone or tablet is running and use the OS-specific keys, though the keyboard offers more iOS centric control keys than for the other two OS's.



Conclusion

The iwerkz Universal Folded Bluetooth Keyboard is portable yet functional. The 11.4" span gives the keyboard much better usability than narrower portable keyboards that cramp your fingers and keys. The keyboard works with most devices except the Nokia Lumia Icon Windows phone which isn't the keyboard's fault, and the battery life is decent. Typing experience is mostly good except the "M" and "N" keys are offset from their usual touch typing positions. We like the stand that can hold both a smartphone and a tablet, and the color selections of the interior and the stand.

Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4
What's Hot: Portable and light, good typing experience, and comes with a stand.
What's Not: "M" and "N" key positions are off, battery life could be longer.
Price: $39.99
Web site: iwerkz

Reviewed by: Tong Zhang









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