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Old June 2nd, 2013, 12:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Review of Nexus 7 bluetooth keyboard/cover w/lots of pics!!!

This is a review of Bluetooth keyboard/cover for Nexus 7: Ultrathin Aluminum Wireless Bluetooth 61-Key Keyboard for Google Nexus 7 - Black + Silver

I have reviewed a lot of accessories for smarphones and tablets, this one really stands out! When I saw the description for this keyboard, I thought to myself this is going to be just another generic keyboard with "Nexus 7" added to the name for search index. Was I in for a big surprise!!! Although you can pair it up with any phone/tablet, this keyboard is specifically designed to fit Nexus 7 like a glove!

Let me first start with a built quality - a very solid lightweight construction with a weight of about 216g (7.6 oz) and dimensions to match Nexus 7. The keyboard is relative light thanks to it's rechargeable battery (micro-usb charging port on the side) which guarantees 55 hours of uninterrupted working time as well as 60 days of standby time. Keys have a very nice springy feedback with a decent travel. The size of the keys is very comfortable for typing, although spacing in-between is a bit cramped. But I think for the amount of keys and functionality squeezed into a keyboard with Nexus 7 footprint - this is pretty good. Above the keys there is a stand-cavity to place your tablet which turns it into something that resembles netbook. When you turn this keyboard to look on the back, you will be surprised how well they matched the color, the feel, and the finish of the original Nexus 7 back. Very impressive! Even so the material is not slippery, they also added four discrete standoffs for extra grip with a surface. Once you done using they keyboard, it snaps right on the front of the Nexus 7 like a clamp shell, very secure fit.

Functionality of this keyboard is as good as it looks. Pairing up was simple, turn the power on, hit Connect button, scan from Bluetooth section of N7, and enter the code. Done! You can start navigation using arrow keys (up/down, right/left), get back to Home screen with dedicated home button, Go back with dedicated Return button, and have full multimedia control with volume up/down, and play/pause/fwd/rev buttons accessible with FN key. You even have copy/paste/cut buttons as well (with FN key).

Overall, I was VERY impressed with this keyboard, it's build quality, functionality, and seamless integration with Nexus 7 to work as a stand or a latching cover giving additional protection for N7. Oh, and the most important part - it's only $23 shipped!!! I have dealt with DX.com before, and so far has been happy with their service and support. Definitely recommending this bt keyboard as one of those must have Nexus 7 accessories.

Here are the pictures:































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Old June 2nd, 2013, 04:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Another thorough review, thank you.

I toyed with a similar keyboard when I got mine earlier in the year. Given the number of keys that have fallen out since I got it, I sorta wish I'd stumped up the extra 5
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Old June 3rd, 2013, 04:37 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Great review.

I also have one of these and think it's brilliant. Although, looking at the photos, I think I might have a slightly older version, as mine does not have the same key layout - it's missing a Tab key and a Function key, although I do have a search key and some of the other symbols are spread between more keys.

See the attached picture.

The only minor gripe (other than the missing Tab key, although it looks like it's been resolved) I have is that the clip/grip by the space bar (so that it can grip the Nexus 7 when stored) can get in the way of your thumb when typing. It's not a show-stopper, to be honest. You do get used to it.

To be honest, it's very reasonably priced (even here the UK - I think I paid under 20) for a Bluetooth keyboard, so the gripes are neither here nor there.

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Old August 15th, 2013, 08:23 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm curious. How stable are these sitting in your lap. Is there anything that really holds the N7 in place or is it really a stand that just happens to have a keyboard. I'm trying figure out if the Nexus will fall over if I happen to be typing on my lap rather than a hard, flat surface.

Oh, and I do have the gen 1 (2012) N7.
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Old August 15th, 2013, 09:45 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hook View Post
I'm curious. How stable are these sitting in your lap. Is there anything that really holds the N& in place or is it really a stand that just happens to have a keyboard. I'm trying figure out if the Nexus will fall over if I happen to be typing on my lap rather than a hard, flat surface.
That looks like a good keyboard for the N7, but I don't think it would fit the new one that I have. I bought the AmazomBasics because of the size. I can't see much use in buying a keyboard that is the same size as the one on the 7" tablet. I will have to give it another look when they make one for the N7 2013
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Old August 15th, 2013, 10:14 AM   #6 (permalink)
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OP - does this keyboard still work correctly with 4.3? A number of Bluetooth keyboards are having issues with it --

PSA: Android 4.3 Breaks Compatibility With Many Bluetooth Keyboards
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Old August 15th, 2013, 11:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hook View Post
I'm curious. How stable are these sitting in your lap. Is there anything that really holds the N7 in place or is it really a stand that just happens to have a keyboard. I'm trying figure out if the Nexus will fall over if I happen to be typing on my lap rather than a hard, flat surface.

Oh, and I do have the gen 1 (2012) N7.
I ordered one of these things before they put the TAB key in there. And I love it!!! I have had no issues with typing on my lap, or anywhere else for that matter. You really need to keep the tablet in the landscape mode, but that's just fine with me. It's easy to carry around with the tablet and keyboard in the "use it" configuration. I just wrap one hand around the whole thing. (big hands?)

As to what holds the tablet in place, that's gravity. It's fairly reliable, the gravity that is, so it really isn't a problem.
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Old August 15th, 2013, 02:14 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I too have had no problems with the Nexus falling out of the slot when typing on my lap. In fact this is how I use it most of the time when typing on the keyboard. The only time it's likely to fall out is if you have your legs sloping away from you at a steep angle.

Mine seems to work fine with 4.3, too.

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Old August 15th, 2013, 07:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thanks, folks. I ordered this today. I even ordered the one the OP recommended. There were countless repackagings of this keyboard on Amazon that were cheaper, but once you added shipping, they really weren't and I liked the OP's review. Looking forward to using this on my Nexus & along with Text Maker Mobile (my favorite mobile word processor) for doing some quick writing and editing on the go without carrying around a full keyboard. I know it is a small keyboard, but it should work fine in those situations where I would go to it.

Edit: Why does the forum think when I make Text + Maker into one word that it should be censored?
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Old September 7th, 2013, 09:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Wanted to stop by and thank everyone again. It took forever to get here from Hong Kong or wherever (but, hey, shipping was free), but it was worth the wait. Great keyboard and case. Yes, it is small, but is easy to carry with me and very convenient. Pairing was smooth and easy. What a great solution for the commuter train... basically makes my N7 an Androidbook. I love it!

Cheers!
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Old September 7th, 2013, 10:24 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hook View Post
Wanted to stop by and thank everyone again. It took forever to get here from Hong Kong or wherever (but, hey, shipping was free), but it was worth the wait. Great keyboard and case. Yes, it is small, but is easy to carry with me and very convenient. Pairing was smooth and easy. What a great solution for the commuter train... basically makes my N7 an Androidbook. I love it!

Cheers!
Yeah, I really like my Nexus 7 but sometimes I like a notebook-like device and that's when I turn to my TF700T and keyboard dock. Glad it worked out.
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Old January 12th, 2014, 11:40 AM   #12 (permalink)
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TWISTER6--is the key board still working? How has it held up over the last 6 months?
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Old January 12th, 2014, 11:50 AM   #13 (permalink)
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This is for the 2012 N7 version only - correct? Fit for 2013 would have to be different.
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Old January 12th, 2014, 12:07 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Correct, this one is for 2012 version, not 2013 version. They actually released one for 2013 as well, very similar but with a different finish.

Regarding original keyboard and how well it's holding up, I actually haven't used it much. My kids are using 2012 N7 now (each one has their own with Poetic folding slim case), and I got 2013 N7 for my wife where she doesn't care much about keyboard.

In my personal opinion, as long as you don't let your kids (I got 5yr and 8yr old) play with it, it should last for a very long time. Once you put it in your kids hands - all the bets are off. But overall, it has a very solid built.
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Old January 12th, 2014, 12:22 PM   #15 (permalink)
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This looks like the 2013 version:

YBK-S06 Waterproof Dust-Free Bluetooth V3.0 59-Key Keyboard for Google Nexus 7 II - Black - Free Shipping - DealExtreme
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Old January 13th, 2014, 03:40 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I've been using mine for several months now. It travels with me (in my bike bag) daily (I carry the keyboard and Nexus 7 in a neoprene zip pouch). I use it as a stand for the Nexus 7 almost daily and probably type with the keyboard a few times a week.

I've not had any problems with it since I bought it.

Good to know they also have one out for the Nexus 7 (2013), too!

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