Review: Brydge Pro Keyboard for iPad Pro beats Apple's offering in nearly every way
The Brydge Pro is a unique third-party keyboard for the iPad Pro that gives Apple's tablet the practical workability of a MacBook.
We've reviewed quite a few keyboards for the iPad Pro on AppleInsider, and while we appreciate the seamless and easy functionality of Apple's Smart Keyboard, typing on it is a completely different story. We've praised keyboards like the Slim Folio Pro from Logitech, as well as Zagg's Slim Book Go for great tactile feedback for typing
The Brydge Pro keyboard is unlike the others, and we can say confidently that it's the best keyboard for the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
It's close to a MacBook & iPad hybrid
For almost the same price as Apple's own Smart Keyboard you're getting way more in terms of functionality, and its overall design is top-notch.
Both sizes of the Brydge Pro keyboard are made out of a sturdy aluminum casing that feels cold to the touch. Given the heft, and sturdiness, an iPad and Brydge combo feels very much like holding a smaller MacBook.
Like the MacBook, there are even four rubber feet so that your iPad won't slide around your desk when you're using. So far, we haven't seen this in other keyboard cases, and we'd like to see it more as the category grows.
Great at every angle
While this is more about the iPad, the iPad's 180 degree viewing angles, no matter how you want to use this iPad when you're typing with the Brydge, you're set. You can set it to whatever angle you'd like, for typing ergonomics, or in two other modes such as movie mode, and tablet or drawing mode.
The keyboard itself is amazing to type on, but it's not the best we've tried. We think that the Zagg Slim Book Go feels way better in terms of overall feel, but only by a little bit.
The keys are a bit small on the 11-inch version, but the 12.9-inch version with the bigger keys and more natural spacing between them feels more normal. We don't like the fact that our wrists aren't sitting properly on the lower half of the keyboard, but on the bigger version, that's not an issue.
Above the number keys are iOS shortcuts, rare on iPad Pro keyboards. A dedicated brightness button is really handy so you don't have to access the control center to adjust the iPad's brightness.
The keyboard is backlit and has three different brightness options. We've gone up and down the range, and it gets very bright, almost bright enough to read print materials adjacent to the iPad. We can't say this about other keyboards we've tried.
The perfect keyboard for professionals
There are two rubber nubs right below the arrow keys and Siri shortcut button so that when you close the iPad down it won't scratch your screen. When you do close it, the iPad and keyboard goes to sleep, and when you open it up later, it'll automatically reconnect and you can start using it immediately. It's very MacBook-like which we're a fan of.
The Brydge Pro also comes with a magnetic snap-on leather cover to help protect the back of your iPad from scratches or dents. We wish it came in other colors, but black is subtle and minimal.
Battery is supposed to last for 12 months, but we've only had the Brydge Pro for a week, and so far we haven't really ran into any issues. If the battery dies, you can charge the keyboard via USB-C.
All in all, we're really impressed with the Brydge Keyboard Pro. Build quality is superb, the keyboard feels great to type on, although not the best we've tried. The almost unlimited viewing angle options are something that we really appreciate, and the fact that it feels like a MacBook when you're lugging it around really helps sell the Brydge Pro that much more.
If you're looking for the best overall iPad keyboard, we highly recommend picking up the Brydge Pro keyboard.