Typing long documents or emails on a tiny smartphone screen or iPad keyboard can be quite a maddening experience. As well as wasting time because of typing errors you can end up with neck strain and a strong desire to hurl the said device clean across the room. A more workable solution is to use a portable Bluetooth keyboard and Verbatim has just announced the second generation of its offering. The new Verbatim Bluetooth Wireless Mobile Keyboard can be paired with up to six devices at one time and is compatible with iPhone, iPad, iPad 2, and other Bluetooth-enabled tablets such as Samsung Galaxy Tab and the Motorola Xoom.
The size of a standard QWERTY keyboard, Verbatim's Bluetooth device folds in half for easy portability and storage. It's larger than an iPhone so it won't fit in your pocket, but it won't take up much room in a briefcase or bag.
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Once open, by way of a hinge, little rubber nodules underneath the keyboard are designed to stabilize the device on a flat surface. Or if you're typing on your knee or some other awkward position a sliding lock mechanism secures the keyboard so it won't fold up on you.
The only real concession to the hinge mechanism is a small split in the spacebar and there's also playback buttons located on the left hand side of the keyboard allow you to play, pause, skip tracks and adjust the volume.
The new model also has dedicated function keys including cut, copy, paste and undo, as well as brightness control.
Built into the keyboard is a retractable and removable smartphone stand (it's too small to dock a tablet) designed for the phone to lie in landscape orientation, which makes sense if you're typing documents, and allowing you position the screen where it's convenient for you.
Verbatim Bluetooth Wireless Mobile Keyboard is available in black or white, uses two AAA batteries and comes with its own carry case. It's priced at US$79.99.