Star icon to indicate updates At a glance

Writings and musings on the latest web trends and life, advertising, design, projects, and news from a product manager based in Boulder, Colorado.
Up and about since 2003.

Click here for the RSS 2.0 feed Follow me on Twitter Pictures from my Flickr account

Mat Kearney

Most commented posts Most commented



Search Categories


May 6 | Brydge iPad Pro 2018 Keyboard review

One of the oddest things about writing on a solid, alumnium keyboard attached to the latest generation iPad Pro is that you immediately start expecting more from iOS, and not the keyboard. The trouble is that with such a superior keyboard experience, suddenly the myriad of minute iOS limitations, like the fact that most apps think you’re on a mobile viewport, the lack of Chrome extensions or even the ability to use a mouse, come to the fore. But luckily those are things that power-users need, and hopefully the pro-sumer can get by without them, or has another device that fits the bill.

I was lucky to win access to an early shipped version of the keyboard, which went on pre-order in January. I was eagerly waiting for this because it would serve both as a cover to my iPad Pro and a solid writing companion to the already-powerful device.

It’s built from a brushed aluminum uni-body frame with a hinge that carries two rubber L-shaped holders for the iPad, which were designed to match the size of the bezels on the device. The hinge does extend all the way flat, though the added lip means the whole assembly does not lie entirely flat, nor does it rotate beyond. This means making the iPad a purely tablet experience means taking the iPad out of the holder and refitting it upside down, which is just a minor inconvenience.

It makes me wish my Macbook Pro had a keyboard like this. It’s super quiet and has just the right keys at the top, including a home button, lock and brightness. The home key is particularly desirable because the lack of the home button on the device itself, and swiping up from the edge of the keyboard to the middle of the iPad can quickly get annoying. There’s a certain magic that comes with pressing the home button on the keyboard, FaceID kicking in, and the whole thing unlocking.

The keyboard also comes with 4 backlit brightness options, which makes for in-flight writing especially nice.

I will say, I’m one of those people who like wide and comfortable keyboard layouts; having said that, I have the 11-inch iPad Pro, which means this keyboard is fairly remarkably able to fit a full-sized keyboard layout while matching the device size. I imagine I would be a little more at ease with the 12.9-inch iPad Pro and corresponding keyboard, but it is what it is.

There’s a nice magnetized thin black cover that comes with the unit, so that you can make sure the iPad’s back stays covered. So the overall heft of the keyboard and iPad setup is not significant if you consider that in any other situation one might desire a cover for the iPad itself.

The USB-C charging on the side is a welcome change from most other manufacturers, since it means carrying one less charging cable. As you can see, the keyboard is about the thickness of the iPad, which means collapsing the two together makes for about double the height of the iPad alone.

Lastly, a small indententation in the keyboard makes opening it very easy.

Overall, the Brydge keyboard has definitely been worth the wait, and this has and will continue to be a reliable meeting-notes and travel-work device, with all the added extras that already come with the iPad, such as superior sound, Apple Pencil support, and perfect size and weight.

Comments Comments

More recent posts


Jan 1 | Onsen trip report: Haccho-no-yu, 八丁の湯, Okukinu, Nikko

I had the chance to travel to the far corner of Tochigi prefecture in a place called Okukinu (奥鬼怒), nominally still Nikko city, to stay at Haccho-no-Yu, an onsen ryokan. It’s definitely a hidden gem, though perhaps not the place for everyone. Getting there takes a bit of work. From Kitasenju (北千住) station you take […]

Feb 22 | All About Tokyo Taxis – Part 1

In which I discover a minor taxi racket in Akasaka, ogle taxis from the top of Tokyo station, go taxi hunting, and end up calling myself an otakushii. You can get descriptions to all these photos by reading the alt text (hover) or by looking through this imgur album. New York City has, for all […]

Feb 12 | Strange Dreams from Oshima

In which I sleep walk 20km across an island 120km away from Tokyo, while taking weird photos and searching for warm drinks in the freezing cold. Samyang 14mm f/2.8, 15 second exposure on 5D Mark III, Magic Lantern, shooting once every 1 second at ISO 3200 with mirror lockup to prevent shaking It’s 6:57 when […]

Jan 3 | What’s In My Bag

I’m a photographer based in Tokyo. I collect film Canon SLRs too, though my current bag setup is not built around showing off my cameras! The key components are a Canon 5D Mark III and the Canon A-1, with a Samyang 14mm wide angle lens. I’m chiefly a landscape photographer stuck in an hyper-urban jungle, […]

Dec 29 | Japan’s Star Wars train

It turns out there is a Star Wars train in Japan. Unfortunately, it isn’t the interstellar kind. At least not for now. The train, which runs on the Nankai Railway line between Namba station and the Kansai Airport (KIX), had been painted black with Star Wars characters emblazoned on its side, in anticipation of the […]

Dec 26 | 1980 Canon Reflex magazine

Follow my adventures on YouTube at the CanonFilmGuy or see the entire catalogue at canonfd.org This is the 31-page Canon Reflex sales brochure from 1980, and lists information about the Canon F-1, AE-1, AV-1, AT-1 and the A-1. The full version can be downloaded here. A stamp at the back identifies as the store it […]

Recently read

  • # [Inside Amazon]: wrestling big ideas in a bruising workplace
  • # Images show Sochi Olympics wasteland
  • # Mobile apps [must die]
  • # Useful objects made [uncomfortably] un-useful.
  • # A slightly weighted font [for dyslexics].
  • # The [nicest place] on the Internet
  • # The [definitive guide] to trading candy
  • # An awesome [handwriting font] made to mimic a doctor’s penmanship.
  • # 32 innovations that will [change your tomorrow]
  • # Six years in the making, a proposition for a sexy [highway font].
  • # It turns out there are [many things that don’t exist].
  • # Are expensive batteries worth it? [Maybe not]
  • # 10 things to do with [Hostess Twinkies]
  • # He’s eaten at [362 pizza joints] in New York City and has reviewed each one on an 8-slice scale.
  • # If you’re going to destroy your reputation as a PR person, better do it [in an epic way]
  • Subscribe »