Logitech is the leader when it comes to quality iPad keyboards, and the new Slim Combo Keyboard Case for the iPad Pro is no exception — especially if you’ll be using your iPad Pro as a laptop replacement.
Logitech – $130 – $150 (in blue or black)
The Good: Comfortable and responsive keyboard, backlighting, no Bluetooth connection necessary
The Bad: A bit heavy, must remove keyboard to use as tablet
Who it’s for: Anyone who wants to hold Apple to their word that the iPad Pro can be a PC replacement
The Gear: Logitech sent us the black Logitech Slim Combo Keyboard Case.
The first thing to talk about is the keyboard itself… it’s awesome! The keys have a good feel and because of the range of movement in the keys, it feels very natural to use. The keys on the keyboard are backlit, making it easy to see them in the dark or low light. This lighting has a few levels of brightness, so you can choose according to your preference. But no need to worry about wasting your battery — a few moments after lifting your fingers, the lights gently fade out.
The Logitech Slim Combo Keyboard Case has tight integration with the iPad Pro. On the top row you’ll find a number of shortcut buttons: home, screen brightness, keyboard brightness, search, media controls, volume and lock. You also find command, option and control keys, which give you access to iOS shortcuts you can’t access on the onscreen keyboard.
Connecting the keyboard is a snap with the magnetic smart connector. It aligns just right and instantly connects. No need to fiddle with Bluetooth connections like older iPad keyboards. Also, no need to charge it separately, since it draws what little power it needs directly from the iPad. Logitech says that it will use 0.3-1.6 percent of your iPad’s battery per hour. We experienced no connection delays and the keyboard was very responsive. Occasionally the onscreen keyboard was visible as well, but this seems to be more an iOS 11 bug, and was easy to dismiss. Additionally, there is a palmrest that can be folded under the keyboard if you like.
Of course, this is more than just a keyboard, it’s an iPad case with a keyboard. This is an important distinction because at first glance you’ll see that this “slim” case is actually a bit bulky. It will just about double the weight of your iPad Pro with the case and keyboard alone weighing just under 1.5 lbs. But, for the extra weight and bulk you’re getting more than just a keyboard, you’re getting some good drop protection too.
The back cover has cutouts for the speakers, mic and camera and covered buttons that work just fine. There is also a small elastic loop on the top for holding your Apple Pencil. It seems a bit too easy for the pencil to potentially get caught when inserting or removing the iPad from your bag, but I’m not sure what a better solution would be.
A key feature of the back cover is the kickstand. It is well designed, allowing you to set the angle from 20 to 70 degrees. This is so much better than other cases that only have a few preset angles. Additionally, there are small rubber pads on the corners of the kickstand to keep it from slipping on a smooth surface.
But. what if you simply want to use the iPad Pro as a tablet? Easy, just remove the keyboard. What about folding it around to the back like a normal cover? Nope, can’t do that. In fact, if you try, the keyboard will just pop off! This is unfortunate since now you have to find a place for the loose keyboard. In addition, you can’t use the keyboard without the back cover.