Skip to content

With my iPad only lifestyle, there has been a pain point that's been present with a lot of iPad Pro users: keyboards.

There never seems to be a perfect keyboard for the iPad that is agreed upon with everyone. In fact there are a number of choices that seem to have some sort of drawback no matter how you look at it.

I like to to think of iOS keyboards like that of trail mix. By that I mean there are lots of options, but you are never satisfied with what you get.

The Peanut

The Magic Keyboard is the peanut, simple yet reliable and gets you where you are going. However, it is missing the sweetness and delight that you want. With no backlighting and a Bluetooth only connection, you often have to wake it from its all too frequent sleep mode just to get the keys to work with the iPad. Sure you can simply tap an arrow key when you want to use it, but when it is such a prevalent and repetitive thing to do it becomes tedious and tiring.

The Sunflower Seed

The Smart Keyboard is the sunflower seed. Small and plentiful, but doesn't provide enough sustenance in its own. The Smart Keyboard is the most frequently recommended keyboard for an iPad Pro, but it doesn't check all the boxes. Again, with no backlighting working on the keyboard in a dark room just doesn't work. Now as a step up from the Magic Keyboard it does have a Smart Connector, but with that comes sacrifice in keyboard size. Especially in the 10.5 iPad. The key size is small, space between keys takes some getting used to, and even some less used keys are squished to fit the footprint necessary to be used as a Smart Cover.

The Raisin

The Logitech Keyboard is the raisin of the bunch where some people like and is "healthy" competition in theory. In reality it sucks and nearly everyone hates them. Honestly the bulky keyboard ironically named Slim Combo seems to be a slap in the  face to the people who decided to buy it. It has a Microsoft Surface knockoff okickstand in the case making the footprint of this keyboard when in use take up more space than any other keyboard I have used. It does have backlighting, but the keys are even more cramped than that of the Smart Keyboard. This is the one keyboard I tell almost everyone to steer clear from because the cons outweighs the pros ten to one.

The M&M

Finally, the Brydge Keyboard is a lot like the cheap M&M knockoff in trail mix. It seems like the best option but it still tastes awful once you bite into it. I had high hopes for the Brydge Keyboard when it was first announced. It's only issue for me was that it had a Bluetooth connection, but I was willing to let that go for what it offered. The backlit keyboards and comfortable keyboard layout alongside a detachable clamshell design looks both functional and beautiful. Sadly, much like trail mix, the execution was lacking and it ended with a hunk of aluminum that barely worked properly. The keys were mushy and unresponsive in all 3 models I received when I order this keyboard. I have heard from people that you need to expect to send your keyboard back a few times before getting one that works properly, but to me that isn't acceptable in this ecosystem where a product that costs over $100 needs to be checked for quality and most likely sent back several times before a customer is satisfied. With that said, if you are willing to deal with that kind of hassle the Brydge Keyboard is worth a shot, the support team there is very nice and responsive, but you have been warned.

My Pick

I am not sure what the answer to this is, but as of right now I am sticking with the Smart Keyboard because portability and connectivity are my two biggest needs in a keyboard for my iPad and nothing compares to the Smart Keyboard in these areas. I also am a fan of the butterfly key switches in the Smart Keyboard as I have gotten akin to the MacBrook Pro keyboard when I was using it. I am able to write without much incidents of mistakes and I have zero latency and missed keys when writing on it. So for now this is what I am using.

With that said if a new keyboard came into play for my 10.5" iPad that executed on these areas and other things like a backlit keyboard and a better key layout I would happily spend my money on it. Sadly, I am not sure we will see anything new come to these iPads with the shadow of new iPads on the horizon, so I won't be holding my breath.

David Sparks has been experimenting with Hyper-Scheduling for quite some time now, it started on his podcast Free Agents and trickled into the new podcast he has with Rose Orchard called Automators. It’s no surprise he has now made it into a Workflow.

If you aren’t sure what Hyper-Scheduling is, it’s blocking out time in a calendar as a means to plan out your day. Instead of making a task list and working around that, you instead block out time for the important projects on that list and stick to a plan. The difference is that the when is in tandem with the what.

How it Works

David created a very nice video tutorial on how the Workflow is made, explaining all the different things you can put in each event, and so on.

[youtu.be/mRDUdsRBi...](https://youtu.be/mRDUdsRBiIk)

You can download the Workflow here if you don’t want to make one yourself.

I am going to start giving Hyper-Scheduling a shot as I think it may help me keep on task more often and make things a little more structured. This Workflow is a good jumping off point for me, and I think it may be for you too if you have been wanting to try out Hyper-Scheduling yourself.

If you have any tweaks or changes you would make in this Workflow let me know on Twitter.

Ina Fried from Axios posted an article stirring the pot for the iOS community. In part Fried explains that iOS 12 may be more of a refinement update and less feature-rich than past updates.

Apple has shaken up its iOS software plans for 2018, delaying some features to next year in an effort to put more focus on addressing performance and quality issues, Axios has learned.

Fried goes on to say that this is coming from Craig Federighi in a meeting with employees.

After this report was published Dan Moren posted his thoughts on Six Colors

... any major software release is all about prioritization, and I’m sure Apple has done the math of balancing new features vs. optimization pretty much every year. It may just be a matter of seeing behind the curtain this time around, combined with the context of the recent situations that Apple’s found itself in that makes this seem more significant. But it’s hard to say because, again, Apple tends to keep its hand pretty close to its vest.

In short: this is probably no cause for either panic or jubilation.

Personally, I couldn’t agree more with Dan Moren, this “scoop” seems to be legitimate and very well may be true. However, I don’t think this is necessarily something that warrants panic or worry for iOS users.

Nick Heer of Pixel Envy also I had a great point in regards to this “Snow Leopard for iOS” rumors:

While High Sierra experienced a couple of fairly

serious security

vulnerabilities and has its share of

irritating bugs

, Snow Leopard — the go-to example of a refinement-oriented release — wasn’t exactly immune. It shipped with a bug that sometimes

wiped user

data after logging into a guest account, a bug which took

months to fix

; and,

like High Sierra

, Snow Leopard experienced a

text rendering bug

as well. We should hope software gets better over time, of course, but you can look back at every single new version of MacOS and find bugs that categorically should not have shipped. I don’t expect the next version of iOS — or MacOS, for that matter — to be an exception, but I hope it is.

We are still several months away from WWDC and this is only the beginning or rumors season, but this isn’t one rumor to grab your pitchforks over.

Especially for iPad users, iOS 11 was leaps and bounds ahead of where iOS 10 was with features. Things were upgraded to be more user friendly, we got the Dock that allowed multitasking to be more fluid, and hardware to go with the new version of iOS to boot.

2017 was a great year to be an iOS user and if 2018 is more of a “toc” instead of a “tick” to allow for Apple to make things better and less buggy, so be it.