Apple has upgraded their keyboard range in tandem with the launch of their latest iMac, and the design has undergone a complete overhaul. The new wired keyboard is encased in a stylish and anodised aluminium enclosure and features MacBook style, flat scissor keys, making it one of the thinnest keyboards on the market.
- Design, anodised aluminium enclosure, flat and comfortable keys, two USB 2.0 ports, doesn't collect dust or crumbs
- Height can't be adjusted, function keys require use of the fn key
Apple's latest wired keyboard is practical, comfortable and stylish, and the USB ports are hugely convenient. It's only real downside is that its height isn't adjustable.
Price$ 69.00 (AUD)
The wired keyboard encompasses slim, recessed keys. Apart from being comfortable to type on, its flat surface means that it doesn't tend to catch dust, crumbs and other foreign articles found in most other keyboards (especially Apple's previous wired keyboard, aptly dubbed the "crumb catcher"). The space surrounding each key is minimal, while the keys are large enough to ensure most will find them comfortable.
The lowered keys mean the pressure required to type is greatly reduced, speeding up the typing process. After continual daily use, we found typing much more efficient than the previous Apple keyboard. Additionally, the angled design means it sits at wrist level, so it provides adequate support. Our major complaint is the fact that its height can't be adjusted; it's a very low keyboard, and this may not suit everyone.
The other main difference to the previous keyboard is the special function keys. They have been grouped with the F keys at the top of the keyboard, and require the function (fn) key to be pressed in tandem to activate them. This is somewhat of an annoyance, especially to Mac users who have been accustomed to adjusting the volume from their keyboards by simply pressing one button. Some of the special functions on this model include brightness control, Expose, dashboard, volume control and media playback controls such as play/pause, skip track and eject.
The wired keyboard also comes with two USB 2.0 ports. One is obviously ideal for a mouse, but the other can be used with a multitude of devices, including USB flash drives, iPods and digital cameras. This is a huge convenience, as having to reach around to the back of your PC or Mac to plug in a device is an annoyance. The USB ports aren't ideally placed though, as you'll have to lift up the keyboard to plug a device in; the edge of the keyboard protrudes over the USB ports on either side.
The wired keyboard is plug and play, so it takes a matter of seconds to get going, although to use to Mac exclusive function keys, you'll need a quick software update.
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