My New iPad Pro That I Almost Didn’t Buy Because of the Keyboard Situation

I recently bit the bullet and purchased an iPad Pro (the big, 12.9-inch one).  This was not an impulse buy; rather, I’d been contemplating it for quite a while.  One major motivation in buying the Pro was in anticipation of writing more regularly, so the keyboard situation was a big consideration.  I didn’t want to pull the trigger on the Pro until I could nail down exactly what I wanted to do keyboard-wise.  So, I did what everyone does nowadays:  I went to the Internets to pour over review after review.  It seems almost counter-intuitive that I tend to gravitate towards products that have thousands of reviews instead of reviews numbering in the double digits.  I guess it’s the larger sample size.  Or something.  I want to hear more peoples’ voices!  But, no one has time to read a thousand reviews; hence, the star ratings on Amazon and every other website.  “Sort by”…”Star Rating”…”4 and above.”  Done.

I’ll be honest – I really wanted a backlit keyboard.  Maybe it’s because I’ve never had one before (gasp!), or maybe because I anticipate more airplane or nighttime typing.  Or – maybe the cool factor.  So, that instantly threw Apple’s Smart Keyboard out of the running.  And, at a whopping $169 bucks, it was far ahead of the other options price-wise.  The alternative that everyone seems to give high praise is the Logitech Create Backlit Keyboard Case (Model 920-007824).

This was around $125 on Amazon, and it also has a back cover, which is appealing.  Everyone loved the keyboard – best they’d ever used, blah, blah.  But, digging deeper into some of the comments and reviews, there was a nagging, recurring issue with people reporting that the Logitech Create case scratched the screens of their beloved, expensive iPads.  I dismissed the first few I read because the next reviewer inevitably gave the Create five stars.  I almost bought the Pro and the Logitech Create…

But, I couldn’t shake the idea of the case scratching up my soon-to-be iPad.  Also, a recurring theme in the reviews was that the Create added significant bulk to the iPad package.  So, I decided to pass on it, and I went ahead with ordering my Pro – keyboard situation be damned!

When I picked up the Pro at the local Best Buy, they had a Create on the shelf, so I took it out of the package and demoed it a bit.  It is bulky.  It is heavy.  It’s not very pretty.  Good decision on the hard pass.  But, now I had my Pro in hand, sans keyboard.  So, I took to Amazon and the tech review sites again.

I knew I needed some sort of case or protection for the back of the iPad, especially after unboxing it.  So, my new idea was to get a slim, clear case like I have on my iPhone and get a stand-alone keyboard.  Surprisingly, not many third parties make such a case for the large Pro.  I generally gravitate towards Luvvitt for clear phone cases, so that was my first search.  They do make one, but it was fairly bulky-looking for my tastes.  Ultimately, I bought the Clear Case made by Case Army ($14).  So far, so good.  It fits well, and it’s nice and slim.

As for a keyboard, in case you didn’t know, there are a TON of Bluetooth keyboards out there, and one can be yours for under $15.  But, I wanted something durable and from a reputable brand – and backlit, remember?  That narrowed the field a lot, and I ended up getting the Logitech Bluetooth Easy-Switch K811 ($80).

Great – so I’ve got my Pro protected and a cool keyboard…but how do I prop this thing up so I can actually type?  Well, luckily there are a myriad of brackets and stands for phones and tablets.  For this, I also went with another brand I like, Anker, and bought their Multi-Angle Aluminum Stand for Tablets ($11).  So, this is my setup:

Seems to be working great.  Looking forward to more writing…