iPad 10.5” keyboard

Thinking about getting one, but smart keyboard is way too expensive for my needs. Any other suggestion?


I recently got the Logitech Slim Combo keyboard. Pluses are a backlit keyboard and any-angle stand. It is also easily detachable–although sometimes it detaches when I don’t want it to. Con is it’s kinda heavy, but then most keyboards will add some weight.

You can buy an inexpensive Bluetooth keyboard. If you’re unsure if you will use an external keyboard that might be the best place to start.

Here’s an inexpensive Anker Bluetooth keyboard: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0096M8VR2?tag=klf-20

FWIW, I love the Smart Keyboard. It’s been a game changer for my use of the iPad.


I bought a Logitech Keys-to-Go a while back and it continues to serve me well. It’s very light, spill proof, and surprisingly easy to type on (your mileage may vary). It’s also designed specifically for the iPad and has dedicated keys to trigger specific feature (e.g. taking screen shots).

I also have a couple of other Logitech keyboards (K760 & K811) that I sometimes use with my iPad.

Even though there’s the occasional connectivity issue, I prefer Bluetooth keyboards to smart keyboards for a few reasons:

  1. Smart keyboards are physically connected to the iPad, and effectively make the device as ergonomically deficient as a laptop. This may not be an issue for occasional use, but if the device is being used for hours on end, it’s an important consideration. With Bluetooth, the keyboard can be completely separate the iPad, making it possible to have a more ergonomic setup. For example, sometimes when I’m on a plane and doing a lot of typing, I’ll hang my iPad around eye level (magazine holders sometimes work well) and put my keyboard on the tray table. This is much better for my back/posture than being hunched over a screen and keyboard sitting on the tray table.
  2. Bluetooth keyboards make it possible to use the device in either portrait or landscape mode, whereas smart keyboards only support landscape use. While I’ll tend to use my iPad in landscape mode (especially when writing) there are instances when it’s more convenient to have it in portrait mode.
  3. Bluetooth keyboards can be used with devices without a Smart Connector (e.g. an older iPhone or an iPad). And if you have one that supports multiple devices you can use the same keyboard with numerous devices (e.g. Mac, iPad and iPhone).

It would be nice to have a smart keyboard that could also be used wirelessly. I don’t expect well see this from Apple, but perhaps a third party will provide this option (assuming it doesn’t already exist).


I have the Smart Keyboard on my 10.5" iPad Pro, and the Logitech Create on the 12.9" (discontinued, which is a shame because I’ve never got on with kickstand devices). The advantage for me of having something with a stand built in is that I can pull my iPad out on the tram, balance it on my handbag and lunch on my lap, and attempt to progress further with my blog post drafts/handle email/etc. If the keyboard were completely separate from the iPad that wouldn’t happen - the instability would result in a broken iPad somewhere in the tram, and me possibly unable to retrieve it.

All this is to say, it depends on your use case. If you only ever use your iPad on a table then you can get any kind of bluetooth or smart connector keyboard and you’ll be fine, if like me you like to try and attempt to work on public transit which is crammed to the gills/less stable environments, get something with a slot that the iPad sits in or that magnetises to it.

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I can definitely see where a Smart Keyboard would be an attractive option in some cases, especially given that it especially provides a stand.

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For me, the draw of the Smart Keyboard is that it’s always with my iPad and ready to go. For example, I was getting ready to go to bed and browsing this forum in bed. Then I decided to type up this response and was able to flip open the keyboard and type away. It adds a little extra bulk to the iPad, but it’s still small enough that the iPad easily slides in my purse or any bag.

Without the Smart Keyboard I never would have taken the type to type out this post on the glass and wouldn’t have bothered to get out of bed to find my Bluetooth keyboard. :slight_smile:

If you want to go the separate Bluetooth have keyboard route then my favorite solution is the Apple Magic Keyboard with the canopy case from Studio Neat.



I use the Smart Keyboard and really like it.

For those who use a Bluetooth one, does it connect in some way to the iPad, or completely seperate? If the latter, how do you see the iPad screen properly?

I’d make sure to have a cover or case. You can find numerous bluetooth keyboard cases on Amazon.

This is one I use:


When you throw your keyboard inside your bag, you’ll want to keep it protected. Otherwise the odd key might pop out or something.

I’ve seen some folks use one of those CD cases that we used to put on the sun visor in the car. Just re-purpose that. It’s big enough for the Apple Magic Keyboard 2.

The keyboard will connect via bluetooth. The Smart Keyboard is nice because you don’t have to charge it. It gets power directly from the iPad Pro Smart Connector.

I’m OK with the Apple Magic Keyboard 2. The battery lasts a long time. Once a month, I’ll just connect it to my USB charger or a USB port on my Mac to charge it for a couple of hours and I’m good to go.

My old boss has gone through 4 Smart Keyboards in the last couple of years. He uses his iPad Pro 12.9" heavily and has given up. He has since returned to his bluetooth keyboard.

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Thanks everyone!!

Indeed I have a couple of bluetooth keyboards, including an Anker (great but not very portable) and this MoKo foldable keyboard which once you get used to, works great for travelling.

However, these are inexpensive ones and as I’m using the keyboard more and more I’m thinking of upping my game. Will check the suggestions given here!!