Checking out the iClever Wireless Keyboard

Checking out the iClever Wireless Keyboard

May 31, 2017

I love my mobile pieces.

Smartphone, tablets, handhelds… I enjoy having access to information, work and pastimes on the go. Thing is… when it comes right down to the nuts and bolts of it, it boils down to connectivity, doesn’t it? I mean, I enjoy tablets of differing sizes, but for a lot of tasks, tablets are only as good as the interwebs they are tunneling into.

I am not averse to data plans for tablets, and wi-fi is becoming more ubiquitous, but with both of those solutions, one is still beholden to cell towers and/or poentially insecure public wi-fi.

Point? For a lot of mobile productivity, my smartphone tends to be my most reliable unit. It’s almost always connected, and a lot of the work I do can be performed (or heavily prepped) on it. As such, I tend to build out mobile solutions around my smartphone daily driver first and foremost.

And that’s where the iClever Portable Wireless Keyboard potentially fills a gap. It’s a bluetooth keyboard first and foremost, yes, but unabashedly hopes its design and resultant portability lends itself to indispensability.

And about that design… out of the box, it’s a sleek device, coming wrapped in a simple carry pouch. It aluminum finish is quite becoming. In hand, prior to unfolding, it is barely bigger than your regular flagship smartphone. It feels very well fused, with the folding mechanism and hinges hidden.

It is a bluetooth keyboard with a tri-fold design, and opening it up reveals the full product: full mostly black keyboard with number row/function keys, plus specialized keys for Windows, iOS and Android. The crown jewel (in my opinion) is the incorporated touchpad with dual buttons on the right. Mouse control on a portable keyboard? Oh yeah. When folded, it comes in at 2.4 x 3.5 x 0.7 inches, and uncoils to 11 x 3.5 x 0.2 inches — a speck or two within the size of, say, an Apple Bluetooth Keyboard, for comparison. It also weighs under 8 ounces and is charged via micro-USB.

It comes ready to pair (to three devices, no less), and so we got to pairing. The keyboard works as expected, and the touchpad invokes a pointer, and works as expected. We were able to get different devices going with the switch when needed. Some folks might find the keys cramped, but I was able to get this going on it with no problems at all. It boasts 60 days of usage on a full charge.

Truth be told, this isn’t the first foldable keyboard we’ve seen; heck, iClever itself has shown a fondness for this particular form factor in previous portable keyboard models. What sets this one apart, perhaps, are the extras: keyboard response, full keys (including the aforementioned number row and function keys), and especially the touchpad. That touchpad is especially attractive to people like me, who group up using mice on computers, and might not instinctively look to touch the screen while using a traditional keyboard. Now, the touchpad doesn’t work with iOS devices, but does work with Windows tabs.

Altogether, a joy to use. Outside the need for a stand of some sort, and maybe a backlight it’s fantastic, and quite easy to fall in love with.

Tre Lawrence
Tech fiend that isn't too cool for ramen noodles...
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