While I’m still not a fan of tablets, and prefer a laptop anyday, there is one accessory that actually gets me to use my tablet, and that is a Bluetooth keyboard. For the most part, a Bluetooth keyboard is a Bluetooth keyboard, and since there are many new Nexus 7 owners out there looking for one, I figured why not take the Logitech Tablet Keyboard For Android 3.0+ for a test spin until an official Nexus 7 keyboard hits the market.
If you’re in the market for a Bluetooth keyboard and can’t wait on an official one from ASUS, the Logitech Tablet Keyboard For Android 3.0+ will do more than a great job fulfilling your impatience. It’s a nice compact keyboard that comes with a carrying case (that doubles as a stand) and a clean Tron/Ice Cream Sandwich themed look.
The price of this keyboard varies anywhere from $40 to $70, so it’s a bit pricey, but the good news is that it’s available at a number of retailers (picked mine up at Walmart), so you won’t have to wait (or pay) for it to ship. Let’s take a look at what it offers and how well it works (in regards to the Nexus 7), and then you can decide if it’s worth it to wait or head out to pick one up.
Keeps a low profile
The compact keyboard combines the best of traditional keyboards and laptop keyboards, for a great experience wherever you use your tablet.
Does double duty
On the go, the carrying case helps protect your keyboard. And once you arrive, it converts into a sturdy stand for your tablet that’s adjustable to just the right angle.
The keyboard pairs easily with your Android tablet over Bluetooth® wireless. Use it on your desk, lap or anywhere within 30 feet of your tablet.*
You get media controls—like play, pause, volume up and volume down—right at your fingertips.
Gives you options
The separate stand means you can place your tablet just where you like it—in landscape or portrait mode—for more freedom than other types of portable keyboards.
You’ll find the look and build quality of the keyboard to be excellent with its angled build for comfortable typing and Honeycomb/ICS color theme for perfect Android bliss. The keyboard comes with a carrying case that’s perfect for protecting it while on the go. The case also doubles as a stand, if you don’t have one already, and adjusts to support multiple viewing angles in both portrait and landscape.
Pairing the keyboard with your Nexus 7 is a cinch, and once you do, it’s on like Donkey Kong. This keyboard is built for Android. It features multiple function keys for quick and easy access to your Gmail, Calendar, Music Player, as well as media controls such as Volume Up/Down, Play/Pause, and Back/Forward. It also has dedicated keys for Search, Menu, and Home. It’s almost like having the tablet in your hands.
You’ll find it to hold a strong enough signal to use in just about any scenario, and battery life is stupendous. It takes 4 AAA batteries, so replacement is easy and affordable.
Ahh, what can possibly be bad about a keyboard that I just made sound so good? Well it’s not a long list, but there are a few drawbacks that may or may not cause you to pass on this otherwise excellent keyboard. First, it’s on the heavy side (which I account to build quality) and actually weighs more than your tablet. That alone isn’t so much an issue, but the fact that the carrying case only fits the keyboard means you’ll have to lug it around along with your tablet, and that can become cumbersome. If you’re simply using this thing at home, you’re golden.
Another issue or non-issue, has to do with those Android tailored function keys. Like I said, this thing was built for Android, the only problem is: Android changes. Thanks to Google making Chrome the default browser on the Nexus 7, the Web Browser key on the Logitech keyboard doesn’t work. I don’t know the specifics of the programming, but the keyboard sends out a signal to launch Android’s old default browser and unfortunately there’s no way to reprogram it.
Aside from the above minor issues, the only other complaint I have has to do with using the case as a stand. The case itself is solid and sturdy, but the extendable arm that snaps the case together to form the stand (and also hold your tablet) is made of plastic and feels like it will be way to easy to snap in half(although I haven’t snapped it yet).
Oh yea, and you may find the price to be a negative, depending on how much you pay for it.
Overall, this keyboard is solid, works great, has great Android specific features, and looks amazing. Most of the negatives are really minor and I’ve found this to be the perfect fit for my Nexus 7. I don’t see myself changing it anytime soon, unless something similar comes along that has all the same features plus a working Chrome launcher key.
I give this one a solid 4.5 out of 5 stars and I think you will too.
Note: BTW, The keyboard works great for Android 4.0 tablets and phones too
To see it in action, hit up the video below. Cheers!