Surface Keyboard

Surface Keyboard is the Bluetooth slim cross-platform keyboard for Surface tablets. It features 109 keys, including 8 hot keys and 6 multimedia keys. The hot keys include: Settings, Backlight+, Backlight-, Search, Task View, Action Center, Screen Lock, Calculator. The multimedia keys are: Mute, Volume -, Volume +, Pause/Play, Page -, and Page +. The Surface Keyboard can be paired with Microsoft, Apple and Android tablets with Bluetooth HOGP 4.0 or 4.1. Mac OS should not be older than 10.10.5 and Android – 4.4.2.

Surface Keyboard

Surface Keyboard is powered with 2 AAA Alkaline batteries with approximate life of 12 months.

Specifications

  • Product name: Microsoft Surface Keyboard.
  • Type: Portable Keyboard.
  • Keyboard Name: Microsoft Surface Keyboard.
  • Keyboard Connection: Wireless.
  • Wireless Platform: Bluetooth Low Energy compatible 4.0 / 4.1.
  • Wireless Frequency: 2.4 GHz frequency range.
  • Bluetooth Profile Support: HID Over Gatt Profile (HOGP).
  • Wireless Range: 50 feet (obstacles-free).
  • Full compatibility: Microsoft Windows 10 / 8 / 8.1, Mac OS v10.10.5/10.11.1, and 10.11.4 / iOS 8.1 – 9.2.1, Android 4.4.2 – 5.0.
  • Compatibility logos: Windows 10, Bluetooth Smart logo.
  • System requirements: Bluetooth HOGP.
  • Software: none.
  • Encryption Features: AES over Bluetooth LE SSP of Passkey.
  • Num Pad: yes.
  • Keys number: 109.
  • QWERTY Key Life: 5,000,000 actuations per key.
  • Multimedia Keys: Mute, Volume -, Volume +, Pause/Play, Page -, and Page +.
  • Multimedia Key Life: 500,000 actuations per key.
  • Hot keys: Settings, Backlight+, Backlight-, Search, Task View, Action Center, Screen Lock, Calculator.
  • Hot Key life: 500,000 actuations per key.
  • Typing Speed: 67.42 characters per minute.
  • Dimensions: 16.57 x 4.43 x 0.76 inches.
  • Weight: 14.79 ounces (Lithium battery included).
  • Keyboard batteries: 2 AAA Alkaline batteries.
  • Battery life: 12 months.
  • Color: grey.
  • Warranty: 1 year.
  • Part #: WS2-00025.
  • Windows Certification Kit (WCK): ID: 1900082 Windows 10.
  • Price: $ 99.99.

Miscellanea

  • The Surface Keyboard is a full-size keyboard, the numeric pad included. The multimedia keys go in a row with the functional keys and take the top ridge of the keyboard.
  • The Surface Keyboard has no ergonomic features as such. Its stand is basically an almost solid plank below the front ridge. In the left side of this plank there’s a batteries compartment to house two AAA alkaline batteries, which, according to Microsoft, can last for a year. In the butt end of the plank a power button is hidden. Press and hold it for some seconds to turn your Surface Keyboard on/off. A tiny white LED indicator, placed just above the Arrows keys is to detect the power status. When the batteries are in place and the keyboard is turned on, the indicator winks for a while and goes off.
  • The keys are chicklet ones, silent and with low-profile. Both Shift keys are of normal lengths and there’re two Windows keys on this keyboard, flanking the blank space key. But the typing speed is disappointedly low – about 68 characters per minute. It’s obviously not an office keyboard, but then, it’s meant for tablets, not desktops.
  • The case is solid, except for the batteries’ compartment lid and therefore is beyond repair. As of the spill resistance, there’s no info whatsoever. Also, the keyboard is a bit on a long side and that’s make it bulky and less portable. It won’t fit in any bag with ease.
  • As every wireless keyboard, the Surface Keyboard features AES encoding. Suffice it to say that U.S. government uses this cypher to encode the secret documents. Microsoft and the government apply 128-bit keys, it’ll take a culprit 50 years to decipher the data. The most advanced 256-bit keys are used for top secret files only. So, with the Surface Keyboard your personal data is as secure as Fort Nox, or close to it.
  • The Surface Keyboard works smoothly with all three tablet OS: Windows, Mac and Android. The only system requirement is Bluetooth HOGP. What does it mean? H stands for HID – Human Interface Devices. In other words, all Bluetooth-connected manipulators like keyboards, mice, trackpads, gamepads. OGP stands for Over GATT Profile. Skipping the techie details, it’s a Bluetooth Low Energy profile. In a tablet’s specs it can be written as Bluetooth LE. While Windows Surface and iPad / iPhone sport the built-in Bluetooth LE support, it might be a good idea to consult your Android device manual first before buying this keyboard.
  • It’s still unknown, if the Surface Keyboard can be paired with a desktop or a Smart TV. But judging from its moniker, the device is meant for tablets only. Hence the low typing speed and a lot of hot / multimedia keys but no trackpad.

Links

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Hands-On with Microsoft Surface Keyboard and Surface Ergonomic Keyboard. Video published by The Mac Observer on November 14, 2016.

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