Apple Bluetooth Keyboard

   20 May 2010, mid-afternoon

I’m not a keyboard fetishist, but I do enjoy typing on a nice keyboard. I bought the tiny Apple bluetooth keyboard from some dude on Craigslist almost two years ago. It replaced the larger white Apple bluetooth keyboard I bought an even longer time ago, also from some dude on Craigslist. I wanted a keyboard that was nicer to type on and, of particular importance, was much quieter.

Apple’s bluetooth keyboard is tiny. It looks like Apple popped it off one of their laptops. The keys are all full sized, but there are a couple differences between this keyboard and a typical Apple keyboard. First, the space bar is a little bit smaller — one key smaller to be exact. This hasn’t been an issue. My thumb doesn’t come close to hitting that part of the spacebar on normal keyboards. Second, the command, option, and control keys are all smaller, and in the case of the control key, only one key is present. I rarely — basically never — use the control, option, and command keys on the right hand side of the keyboard, so the loss of the control key wasn’t such a big deal. (I also almost never use the shift key on the right hand side of the keyboard: no doubt this makes me a bad typist.) Typing commands in Textmate that require you to press some combination of these keys sometimes feels a bit cramped. Still, after using the keyboard for so long I can’t say I’m too bothered. I like the keyboard’s small size.

One advantage of the tiny form factor is that I can keep my mouse closer to the keyboard. I find the fact you typically need to place your mouse so far to the right from where your hands normally are when typing a little bit awkward. I suspect it’s part of the reason my right shoulder always kills after I use a computer for an extended period of time. This keyboard really seems to help get rid of that pain. I also don’t use any sort of wrist rest with the keyboard and my arms don’t kill after an extended period of typing. There is something magically ergonomic about the keyboard, though I’m not sure what.

The keyboard is definitely quieter. I think Shima still finds it too noisy, but I’m not sure you could make a nice keyboard much quieter. Compared to my Unicomp Spacesaver it’s basically silent.

The way a keyboard feels to type on is pretty subjective. The Apple Keyboard uses the typically lame rubber-dome switches you find in most modern keyboards to register key presses. Surprisingly, in this keyboard they work quite well. It takes almost no effort to press a key. More so, because the keys are so shallow and flat they don’t really wobble around as you type—at all. I’ve had my keyboard for a little over two years now, and it still types as well now as it did when I bought it.

If you’re looking for a new keyboard, this is definitely worth checking out. (If you can’t live without a number pad, the larger wired version is probably what you want.)



  1. I thought you hated the keyboard since the bluetooth went out all the time? Also why the sudden review of the keyboard after like 2 years?

  2. I’ve had a few problems with Bluetooth, but i’m not sure if that’s the keyboard or my iMac. They’ve been few and far between since buying it. The mouse on the other hand is particularly useless.

    I started writing this years ago. I finished it now.

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