I recently purchased an iPad Pro 9.7” after being without an iPad for almost a year. My previous device was an iPad Mini and while it was a great device I had stopped using it. I had moved most of my reading to my Kindle Paperwhite because it was so much harder to distract myself with other tasks since the Paperwhite can’t do anything but be a book device. While I could write on the iPad Mini, the built in software keyboard was way to small and the lack of side by side applications made any research difficult enough that I could never get in to a solid writing flow.
Combine the issues above with the lack of side by side apps I gave my iPad Mini to my wife and she retired an iPad 2 happily. After that, I was never able to think of a solid reason to use an iPad regularly so I didn’t purchase one.
That changed for me when Scrivener came out on iOS. I suddenly had a reason to use an iPad regularly, but I didn’t have a great ultra-portable keyboard. I do have a Logitech Bluetooth keyboard which is great, but it’s not something I can simply leave in my daily bike commute bag for the times I need it.
Enter 1byOne folding bluetooth keyboard
After a bunch of research I found the 1byOne folding bluetooth keyboard, and I love it with a few caveats.
The first issue is that the right shift key is small which means you’re going to miss it a bunch at first. Really this goes for all the keys on the keyboard. Due to it’s small size they’re all just a bit smaller and it takes some time to get used to the keyboard and type well.
The longer I’ve had the keyboard the less this has been an issue. At first it would take 15 minutes of work to really start typing quickly without many errors. Now I can sit down and within about 2 minutes be typing at 90% of my full speed with almost no errors that are a result of the keyboard size.
A second issue is the battery. Well actually it’s how the battery makes the keyboard sit.
The battery sits outside the keyboard as a lump in the middle section. This means that the keyboard is raised up and the far left/right sides can be pressed down and tilt the keyboard till they touch the table. While this was super annoying at first, it’s become less annoying because as I’ve got used to the keyboard I have less often tipped it while typing.
Outside of those 2 caveats, this is an awesome keyboard. Folded up it’s about the size of a slightly thick iPhone 6s Plus or a few Field Notes notebooks stacked. Given it’s compact size folded I can carry the 1byOne keyboard all the time without ever feeling like it’s taking up more than it’s share of space in my bag.
Another awesome part of this keyboard is the batter which in short seemingly lasts forever. I try to remember to charge it once a week and I forget sometimes and still the keyboard has never once been out of power when I needed it.
If you’re in the market for a compact Bluetooth keyboard that still types well at an affordable price then the 1byOne should be on your list.