Belkin manages to shoehorn a full QWERTY into its Portable Keyboard Case for iPad mini, but it doesn't offer a great typing experience.
The iPad mini, like its larger sibling, is great for a lot of things, but typing anything longer than a short email message here or there isn't one of them.
Design, Setup, and Keyboard Unlike the ZAGGkeys Mini 7, which uses a thick rubber shell and kickstand, the Portable Keyboard Case resembles more traditional keyboard folio cases.
Along the right edge are a micro USB port for charging with the included cable, a power switch, a pairing button, and an LED indicator light. The keyboard itself, while offering tactile feedback and a full QWERTY layout, isn't very comfortable.
The ZAGGKeys Cover is an iPad mini keyboard case with backlit keys that delivers the best mobile typing experience for the iPad mini. This small iPad mini keyboard case is slim and light, gripping the side of the iPad mini tightly for a very mobile productivity package.
Users looking for a faster typing experience on the iPad mini should definitely consider this backlit iPad mini keyboard. While using the ZAGGKeys Cover on the iPad mini I found I could type fast enough to use this very portable combo as a primary work machine for writing articles and responding to emails faster.
Users will need to adjust to pressing function, shift and Function + Shift for some punctuation, but ZAGG did a good job of keeping commonly used keys and punctuation as the default key press.
The ZAGGKeys Cover iPad mini keyboard is very slim, which limits travel (the distance keys move when pressed) but there is enough travel to work with and the keys offer a slight bounce that helps push fingers back up for the next strike. The top row of keys offers access to common functions like Home, Siri, Cut, Copy, Paste and media playback. This is a backlit iPad mini keyboard which offers three levels of backlighting in seven colors. The iPad mini slips into a small grip on the side of the device that holds the iPad tightly.
The hinge allows for multiple viewing angles and puts the iPad at the far edge of the keyboard, rather than in the middle like many iPad mini keyboards.
ZAGG mentions a media mode which allows users to reverse the iPad mini and use it with the keyboard attached to the back.
The ZAGGKeys Cover is rated for three months of use at 2-3 hours a day without the backlight on.


The ZAGGKeys Cover iPad mini keyboard with backlit keys is the best iPad mini keyboard on the market. Ready to buy one but I don’t see any mention ANYWHERE (including your video) about whether there is a magnetic closing latch. Publisher does not accept liability for incorrect spelling, printing errors (including prices), incorrect manufacturer's specifications or changes, or grammatical inaccuracies in any product included in the Music123 catalog or website.
But while keyboard cases are genuinely useful for the full-sized iPad, the small footprint of the iPad mini doesn't allow for very spacious keyboards built into cases. A thin, suede-like outer flap folds around an inner frame for the iPad mini and a black plastic keyboard. Setup and pairing works like any other Bluetooth keyboard; simply flip the switch into the On position, press the Pair button, and enter the pairing code provided by the iPad mini.
The chiclet style keys provide a bit more travel than the ZAGGkeys Mini 7's, but they're noticeably smaller.
If there are doubts about the full-sized iPad as a productivity tool, those are only heightened by the iPad mini's compact build. This makes it incredibly easy to type in the dark, where with other keyboards a switch to the on-screen keyboard would be needed.
When you are traveling the iPad mini screen is protected by the closed case and if you prefer to read or hold the iPad mini when not typing, it slips in and out easily.
The iPad mini doesn’t fit in well in this mode and with easy on and easy off it makes more sense to use the iPad without the keyboard on the back. The keyboard charges by a Micro USB cable, which is included and is a standard charger for accessories so finding a charge should not be a problem. The typing experience is very good for such a small keyboard and backlighting enhances this. It has 497 dynamic, high quality, natural sounding voices, 106 accompaniment styles and 102 built-in songs. Belkin is the latest company to try and shoehorn a full QWERTY keyboard into an iPad mini case, with its Portable Keyboard Case for iPad mini ($79.99 direct). The flap snaps closed magnetically and folds back into a small triangle for propping up the tablet for typing.
On top of that, the keyboard layout is unorthodox and somewhat awkward—for instance, the Space Bar is far too small and the Backspace button is in line with the top row of letters, instead of numbers, like on most keyboards.


Simply put, I'm not sure there is enough real estate within the dimensions of the mini to fit a truly comfortable keyboard. If you are limited for space you can use this mode to point the iPad mini towards you (as shown below) while watching movies on a plane or in bed. Combined with support for multiple angles and the easy on and easy off design make it perfect for users who need a keyboard for productivity, but prefer to use the iPad mini on its own when it comes time for fun.
Unfortunately, the keyboard is just too small, with some awkward layout choices that make it tough to type with ease or speed. That led to a lot of mistaken keystrokes in my tests, especially when trying to type quickly. The ZAGGkeys Mini 9 manages to fit a much more comfortable keyboard in, but, given its bulk, it nearly defeats the purpose of getting the compact tablet in the first place.
I need the mini in reader mode while looking up patients labs walking between rooms (have nowhere to put the keyboard). I had a far more difficult time adjusting to the Portable Keyboard Case than the ZAGGkeys, which itself didn't offer the best typing experience. Logitech recently announced an iPad mini version of its excellent Ultrathin Keyboard Cover, so I'm eager to see how that fares. But then I want the keyboard when we’re done making rounds to protect the screen when I put it back in my pocket.
There's no dedicated function row like on the ZAGG model, instead you have to hold down the Fn key and use the number keys to access shortcuts like media controls. Now, the playback of the selected song is continuously adjusted to the tempo of the player's performance. You can enjoy various voice effects to enhance your performance, or just for fun!Music DatabaseMusic database provides one touch set-up of the keyboard, to play the selected songs. One dedicated button brings up a great sounding piano, stunningly rich and authentic in its sound and exceptionally responsive to your playing touch, as well as setting up the keyboard to play as a piano.Auto Power Off mode with adjustable timerThis is a new, eco-friendly mode.



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