Top positive review
109 people found this helpful
Keyboard plus Case for the Asus Pad Smart 10" Tablet
on August 26, 2013
Just a quick review first about this keyboard/case but I will update this review over time, once our family uses it more and more.
Our tablet will be used 40/60 for our son's school use and family simple browsing at home when the other computers are not available. I wanted to include a physical keyboard so our son didn't have to use the virtual KB. Easily reclaiming the valuable screen space on the smaller tablet displays. This is our first plunge in the tablet world. Initially I thought the tablet would somehow dock into the case/keyboard and power the keyboard. It doesn't, the tablet clips into a hard plastic frame (surprisingly it holds tight AND is easy to detach as well). The keyboard itself is charged via a micro USB port. This Folio comes with a short micro USB to standard USB cable. No charging adapter is included. For $80, you would think an AC adapter could have been provided, but no, you will have to "borrow" one from your other gadgets if you want to charge both your tablet AND the keyboard at the same time.
So far, I like the unit. The bottom of the keyboard has four rubber button feet. The top outside cover however is silicone like. It may attract all sorts of dust and lint. In between the keyboard and the top is the folding "hinge" and this may be the part that wears out first. We'll see once our son takes it back and forth from school. The keyboard keys are fairly good, the connection is via bluetooth, I do feel a little lag sometimes, as well as some anomalies, such as once or twice, I type something and it jumps out like "cccccatch". One time that happened, I tried hitting backspace but it didn't register. This was also when it just came out of "sleep" mode. As far as lights, there are two lights on the keyboard, both next to the power button. A orange and a blue. The solid orange stands for charging and turns off fully charged (I recall it being off after I charged it, I'll have to confirm on the next charge). The blue is for showing flashing blue = sync'ing, solid blue = sync'ed/ON. On the "sleep" mode I mentioned earlier, say you leave the tablet and come back to it. Hit a key on the keyboard and it wakes up, you do not have to turn the keyboard again, etc.
Very good instructional foldout (multi-language) of the shortcut keys on top of the keyboard. Easy to sync and stay sync'ed. When you initially sync it to the tablet, you enter a sequence of numbers displayed on the tablet screen. Once sync'ed and ready for use, if the keyboard is off, press AND hold the "power" button for about 2 seconds and it will sync and display a solid blue light on the keyboard. To turn off the keyboard, press AND hold the "power" button for about 2 seconds, the keyboard blue light will flash and turn off. If you just press the "power" button on the keyboard and release, the keyboard flashes blue, showing that it will try sync'ing. It's weird, because generally, pressing a button means on/off (particularly a button displaying "power") and holding it longer generally means selecting a "secret" or advanced function. With this Asus Folio, it's the reverse.
We will see how often we will need to charge this, our son just started school and will be using this in about a month. In the mean time, we will put it through the paces at home. Weight spec wise, the keyboard/case weighs ~ 14 ozs, together with our Pad Smart, 2 lbs, 2 ozs.
I do wish it was less costly. At $80, it's a pretty high priced accessory. A negative is when opened, the two halves do not click or hold together in any way, the keyboard portion is like a flap under your tablet that you must hold together. Another negative is when closed, it also doesn't snap close, or stay closed. No magnets to hold it closed or snaps, and nothing to hold when the keyboard is flipped behind the tablet. Also, the shift key on the right side is small, about the size of regular keys on the keyboard, and there is no ALT key on the left side, it is placed on the right side, these can take a little use to while typing on the keyboard. Those are something to consider for others deciding on a case.
To be fair, I would think 3 to 4 stars for this Folio Key (I give it 4 from my initial observations), it's a perfect fit for the Pad Smart 10", there are some short comings, also taking into consideration the price too.
UPDATE 8/27/13: A quick tip, put tape over the speaker grills from the inside of the Folio KB/case. I find the sound from the tablet is increased since we are then redirecting the sound. Painter's tape or something else that is easy to remove later is fine. Tape over the speaker grills of the case, NOT the tablet itself.
UPDATE 8/30/13: Been looking around and I can't seem to locate a DEL key on the keyboard. Also, I've seen the situation again I mentioned earlier, the keyboard not responding sometimes. So far, any non-response only occurs after a sleep period, turning the keyboard off and back on, resets the issue.
UPDATE 9/3/12: The more I get accustomed to using this, the more I find to update. :) For today's topic, does the keyboard and the screen kiss? I was thinking about the concern of the keyboard scratching the screen since the case folds close with the keyboard facing the screen. Upon closer examination, I see there is a gap between the keyboard and the screen surface. I closed the case and looked through the center against a light and was able to see the light clearly. That part is very good. The next part of the test involved pushing the back of the keyboard (outside of the case) against the tablet screen. Examining again, this DOES cause the keyboard to touch the tablet screen. Also, I laid the tablet in case on a table and put a few books on top. This also causes the keyboard to touch the tablet screen. So both pushing down around the center and a uniform load (example with books) will make contact between keyboard and screen.
This does not cause much concern for me because 1. I have a screen protector on the screen so I am not as concerned for scratches (I also recommend a screen protector to place on the tablet for others as well) 2. Generally, no one will typically exert a force on their tablet or place books on it. Though sometimes, I can see the case where the tablet/case is in a backpack with books against it and zipped tight. If you carry books with your tablet, I would recommend trying not to squeeze too much into the backpack too tightly. Sometimes, just because one can force the zipper closed, doesn't mean it is safely secure. I wanted to point this out because others who are looking to buy this or have purchased it, should be aware of the low possibility of damage.
Back to enjoying this accessory.
Please click YES if my review have been helpful to you, it will encourage me to continue writing and updating my reviews, and leave a comment if you have any questions, I will be more than happy to answer if I can be of help.