1. BriDroid's Avatar
    I'm definitely grabbing up an iPad (likely 64GB-3G because I can't help myself) and although it has a nifty on-screen keyboard, I'll also be getting one of the physical keyboards for the heavy lifting. The dilemma I face (and thus the reason why I'm asking the community's help) is: which one?

    The keyboard dock is nice in that it is specifically designed for the iPad, provides the built-in dock for charging, syncing and holding the iPad upright, and includes specific keys just for the iPad. The BT keyboard, on the other hand, is the same price, offers up some nice wireless connectivity for more flexibility, but offers no built-in dock or specific iPad keys.

    Please feel free to weigh in on what you think are the pros and cons of each and, if you are planning on getting a physical keyboard, which one will you get? It will be nice to see what everyone thinks! Thanks!!
    03-22-2010 01:17 PM
  2. derrythe's Avatar
    I think if I were to get one, it would be the keyboard dock. Most of my serious data entry will likely be on my laptop, but if I were to use the iPad for it, I would be sitting at a desk most likely so the dock makes sense. Though one benefit of the BT keyboard is that especially using Apples folder case, you could use the BT keyboard with the iPad propped up in landscape mode if you wanted where the dock obviously locks you into the portrait mode.
    03-22-2010 02:05 PM
  3. BriDroid's Avatar
    I think if I were to get one, it would be the keyboard dock. Most of my serious data entry will likely be on my laptop, but if I were to use the iPad for it, I would be sitting at a desk most likely so the dock makes sense. Though one benefit of the BT keyboard is that especially using Apples folder case, you could use the BT keyboard with the iPad propped up in landscape mode if you wanted where the dock obviously locks you into the portrait mode.
    Excellent point about portrait vs. landscape. Something else I forgot to mention or consider is portability -- maybe the BT keyboard is slightly more portable than the dock/keyboard?
    03-22-2010 02:51 PM
  4. Skytouch's Avatar
    My plan is to go with the small BT keyboard for a few reasons:
    * Landscape mode
    * Ergonomics of my workspace favoring a separate keyboard
    * Other uses for the keyboard besides with the iPad
    04-03-2010 04:24 PM
  5. whmurray's Avatar
    I put off the decision when I ordered my iPad 3G. I have just returned from the Apple Store where I had a lengthy demonstration of the iPad. While the "Genius" who did the demo was very skilled, I am more knowledgeable, Mostly because I watched Andy Ihnatko, Chicago Sun, do an extended live review on MacBreak Weekly, available on youtube at

    Andy came down firmly in favor of the BT k/b as more portable, packable, and separable. I think that I am now decided in its favor.
    04-03-2010 04:39 PM
  6. smileyboy's Avatar
    Are there short cuts that can be used with the wireless keyboard? I just hooked mine up and the typing works great.... But, I'm wondering about scrolling, selecting apps etc. Any help would be great. Thanks
    04-05-2010 03:20 PM
  7. whmurray's Avatar
    Are there short cuts that can be used with the wireless keyboard? I just hooked mine up and the typing works great.... But, I'm wondering about scrolling, selecting apps etc. Any help would be great. Thanks
    Isn't that what the touch screen is for?
    04-06-2010 05:33 PM
  8. smileyboy's Avatar
    You are correct!!!! however the BT keyboard is cool
    04-06-2010 06:46 PM
  9. Flagatorfan's Avatar
    Isn't that what the touch screen is for?
    Yes, but what if I don't have a dock and I tie the ipad from the ceiling and have no opposing pressure to place on it. :-)
    04-06-2010 09:35 PM
  10. whmurray's Avatar
    Yes, but what if I don't have a dock and I tie the ipad from the ceiling and have no opposing pressure to place on it. :-)
    Of course. You are right. That will be a problem. Both times.

    We solve that on the Mac and the PC by defining short cuts on the host. The only way to do that on the iPad is to jailbreak.
    04-06-2010 10:55 PM
  11. west3man's Avatar
    I put off the decision when I ordered my iPad 3G. I have just returned from the Apple Store where I had a lengthy demonstration of the iPad. While the "Genius" who did the demo was very skilled, I am more knowledgeable, Mostly because I watched Andy Ihnatko, Chicago Sun, do an extended live review on MacBreak Weekly, available on youtube at [url= - MacBreak Weekly 188: iPad Revealed![/url]

    Andy came down firmly in favor of the BT k/b as more portable, packable, and separable. I think that I am now decided in its favor.
    Excellent points. I watched that episode, as well. Andy's comment about the dock keyboard's rigidity vs. flexibility/"packability" made a big impression on me.

    [b]I think, and this may be worth the op's consideration, that the iPad dock (minus keyboard) combined with the Bluetooth keyboard closely approximates the best of both worlds.[\b]
    04-07-2010 07:24 AM
  12. whmurray's Avatar
    Excellent points. I watched that episode, as well. Andy's comment about the dock keyboard's rigidity vs. flexibility/"packability" made a big impression on me.

    [b]I think, and this may be worth the op's consideration, that the iPad dock (minus keyboard) combined with the Bluetooth keyboard closely approximates the best of both worlds.[\b]
    I think that is the way that I will go.

    I was in Best Buy yesterday. They had four iPads out for playing with. They were displayed on tilted rings with a rubber bezel. One could alter the angle of the iPad by moving it up on the ring. Either the ring is heavy or attached to the table top. I thought that it was very effective.
    04-07-2010 10:08 AM
  13. BriDroid's Avatar
    I think that is the way that I will go.

    I was in Best Buy yesterday. They had four iPads out for playing with. They were displayed on tilted rings with a rubber bezel. One could alter the angle of the iPad by moving it up on the ring. Either the ring is heavy or attached to the table top. I thought that it was very effective.
    They have those rubberized rings at the Apple Stores also. They should sell those in the store
    04-07-2010 11:03 AM
  14. JCat_IM's Avatar
    I just purchased the BT KB today simply because I want to be completely wireless. Having the keyboard dock means having it at a desk or a table... which for some will be the ideal set up. My power supply is in the bedroom, which is where the iPad charges when I'm not using it anyway. I love the feel of the BT keyboard!
    04-07-2010 11:05 PM
  15. Wasgo's Avatar
    Definitely get the keyboard. Not being able to shift the position for optimal viewing angles would be awful.
    04-07-2010 11:12 PM
  16. BriDroid's Avatar
    I'm looking forward to trying out my old folding Stowaway keyboard that I used for my Palm. EXTREMELY portable.
    04-08-2010 12:10 PM
  17. whmurray's Avatar
    Of course. You are right. That will be a problem. Both times.

    We solve that on the Mac and the PC by defining short cuts on the host. The only way to do that on the iPad is to jailbreak.
    No longer true. With 4.0 someone can build us a program that will enable us to associate macros with key combinations. Should be worth $0.99.
    04-09-2010 06:11 PM
  18. MacUser's Avatar
    Damn, I already pre-ordered the dock/keyboard and the Apple iPad case to be delivered. Will the Apple Store take it back unopened? I would think so, but has anyone returned online items to the store? Either way, I think I'll have to go with the BT keyboard for portability...
    04-10-2010 07:43 AM
  19. onlyagibson's Avatar
    I have the Bluetooth keyboard with mine and IMO landscape typing is a must with certain applications.
    04-10-2010 08:59 AM
  20. MNofsinger's Avatar
    I also ordered the iPad 3G 64GB. I went ahead and picked up the Apple Bluetooth keyboard at Best Buy ($69.99-$20.00 in gift certificates). I think the applle iPad keyboard will be more difficult to carry around because of the built in dock. I also like the idea of being able to use it while in landscape mode. Now I just can't wait until the end of the month!
    04-10-2010 12:25 PM
  21. jsntrenkler's Avatar
    I went with the bluetooth keyboard as well. I prefer typing in landscape mode for most applications.
    04-10-2010 12:47 PM
  22. kimchicowboy's Avatar
    does anyone know what the battery life is on the BT keyboard?
    05-17-2010 05:16 PM
  23. Jellotime91's Avatar
    does anyone know what the battery life is on the BT keyboard?
    The iPad really does have exceptional battery life, so I'd imagine even if bluetooth keyboard does put a dent in it, it's still enough to get you through the day taking notes and such. You should check out the clamcase. It looks pretty cool and convenient.
    05-17-2010 05:27 PM
  24. Guzman's Avatar
    Well i must be the only one, but i went with the iPad dock/keyboard. I prefer typing in portrait as it is more "page like" to me, and the viewing angle is nice. Also, I didn't have to worry about purchasing another dock to charge from, or another dock for holding the ipad with unsightly cables running a muck. It'll all be up to user preference but I have had no issues transporting this dock/keyboard with my ipad in a messenger bag.

    Good luck with your decision. I did a review of the apple keyboard dock on my youtube page. username on yt is "emtguzman"
    05-17-2010 06:04 PM
  25. whmurray's Avatar
    The iPad really does have exceptional battery life, so I'd imagine even if bluetooth keyboard does put a dent in it, it's still enough to get you through the day taking notes and such. You should check out the clamcase. It looks pretty cool and convenient.
    My understanding of the original question was that it was about the battery life of the keyboard rather than the impact of the keyboard on the battery life of the iPad.

    I confess that I do not know the answer to either question. I have been using the keyboard lightly for more than a week and the battery is still working. There is no battery meter or indicator. What I expect is that at some point the keyboard will simply stop working. I will report when that happens. However, I doubt that my report will tell anyone much.

    Suffice it to say that my experience to date tells me that I need not carry with me more than one change (2 AA cells) of batteries.
    05-17-2010 06:52 PM
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