Palm Universal Wireless Keyboard

Last updated: Feb. 7, 2007, 6:37 p.m.

Manufacturer: Palm

Web: [Dead]

Price: £45.69

Rating: 4/5

I've had my palmtop for almost a year now, and the thing I miss most about the old Ericsson palm top I had is the lack of a keyboard. For media, games, web browsing the need for text input is limited and the hand writing recognition software on the Palm (Graffiti) is more than adequate. However when posting on forums, or writing reviews like this the large amount of text that needs to be input makes the hand writing recognition method uncomfortably slow. I've had the keyboard for some time now and have used it fairly frequently, it's small, not a lot larger than the palm top itself when folded up, but opens out to be a full size keyboard, there's nothing fiddly and small about the keys. It's nice and quiet, which means that it doesn't disturb people around you with annoying loud clicking as you work.

My Palm Tungsten E2 sat in the cradle built in to the palm universal wireless keyboard.

The keyboard itself has a nice range of features, it's wireless, using an infra-red interface meaning you don't need to plug anything into the palmtop, or carry an adaptor for your specific palm top's connector. The IR transmitter is on the end of a boom that can be moved through 180 degrees allowing any orientation of a palmtop within the cradle. There's a built in battery level monitor a quick press of the function button and backslash key and the battery status will be reported on your palm top's screen. Short cuts to many of the programs on Palm OS hand-helds are available with function keys. There is also a Windows key aimed at the Windows mobile market, but this doubles as a "Command" button on Palm OS giving access to the copy and paste functions etc. much like the command key on Mac OS.

There are only two slightly annoying things about the keyboard, the gap in the space bar can be annoying. Since the keyboard must be folded in half to pack it away, this cannot be avoided and most of the time I don't find that it's a real problem. The other thing is that this is a US keyboard, that's right Shift-2 is an @ symbol not double quote and £ is only accessible with the Alt Gr button and P.

In summary for the majority of work the keyboard is quite sufficient, and uses the normal key-spacings making it easy for experienced typists to drop into a good touch-typing style. If you use a palmtop a lot for note taking or reporting etc. I'd definitely recommend this handy little device.



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