Roll up, roll up: LG targets mobile accessory market with portable Rolly Keyboard
Touchscreens may be extremely versatile and a good fit for mobile devices,but one thing they don't lend themselves to well is extended typing sessions.As a result, we've seen numerous portable keyboards designed to easilyfit in a pocket alongside your smartphone. Now LG is getting in on the act withits Rolly Keyboard, which it calls the industry's first solid rollable wirelessportable keyboard.
Rollable keyboards are nothing new, so longas they're made from silicone. While these provide more tactile feedback thanan onscreen keyboard, they still can't hold a candle to the feel of a desktopkeyboard. Designs like the Jorno and Thanko's offering have attempted toeffectively put a solid desktop keyboard in your pocket using different origami-likeapproaches. Now LG has brought the flexibility of rollable keyboards and therigidity of foldable keyboards together in its Rolly Keyboard (model KBB-700).
Fashioned from impact-resistant polycarbonateand ABS plastic, the four rows of the Rolly's keys are flexible, allowing themto roll around an elongated rectangular box that sits at the top of thekeyboard when in use. This box houses two arms that fold out to support asmartphone or tablet, and the single AAA battery that powers the device for upto three months of average use.
Unrolling the keyboard will activate theauto-pairing function to connect to a mobile device via Bluetooth 3.0. TheRolly can also be paired to two devices at once and switch between them with asingle button press. Rolling up the keyboard powers it down and sees thekeyboard form a "stick" that can be carried in a pocket or purse.
Despite its portability, LG says the Rollyboasts a pitch, (the distance between the centers of two side-by-side keys), of17 mm, which is close to the 18 mm pitch found on most desktopkeyboards.
LG will unveil the Rolly Keyboard at IFA2015 in September and says it is part of an effort to grab a greater slice ofthe mobile accessory market pie. The device will be released in the US nextmonth, ahead of a fourth-quarter release in Europe, Latin America and Asia.Pricing details are yet to be announced.