As an aspiring novelist and blogger, writing is more than a hobby—it is part of my everyday life. So when I travel, I face the inevitable decision. To laptop or not to laptop? Fortunately, there are solutions to writing on the go without a hefty computer weighing down your luggage.
While I do the majority of my writing on my laptop, about once a week I use my iPad mini. Sometimes it’s nice to get out of the house and write somewhere else, like the park or a coffee shop. On these occasions, I rarely lug my laptop around, mostly because I love the convenience of being able to slip my iPad right into my purse. No charger needed, no bulky laptop case required. For the writer on the go, a tablet is ideal, especially if you’ll be traveling. Although I love my iPad, I do not like typing on the screen for extended periods of time. That being said, I have always had a keyboard. I tried several different brands back with my first iPad, and didn’t really like any of them. But about a year and a half ago, I spent my Christmas bonus on the Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover, designed specifically for the iPad mini.
Any time I bring this out, I get at least one question or compliment. Most people think it’s a super tiny computer at first, until I show them how the keyboard connects and disconnects by magnet, just like an Apple smart cover. The keyboard is small, of course, in order to fit the mini seamlessly. Therefore, if you don’t like typing on small surfaces, then this probably isn’t for you. It did take me a while to get used to, because it was smaller than other keyboards I had tried. However, I found that after a few times using it, I automatically adjusted.
- quick bluetooth connection
- swiftly responding keys
- color/style (fits the iPad, looks like an Apple product)
- magnetic connection
- long battery life
- keys may be too small for some
- unable to adjust angle of screen once in place
- not the best cover
Having the use of the Logitech keyboard has made my writing outings much easier in the last few months, particularly when I was running around London or traveling in the UK. I would highly recommend it to anyone who likes the ease of a tablet such as the iPad mini, but dislikes the keyboard on the screen. You can purchase it online at the Logitech website for $89.99. (Note that their current model is an updated version of the one I have.) They also sell models specially made for the regular iPad, as well as other types of covers and cover/keyboard combos.
Another option is the Zagg Pocket Keyboard. This is a more recent discovery of mine, and one that I am rather fond of. While I love the magnetic capability of the Logitech keyboard, this Zagg keyboard was too good for me to pass up. It folds up to an incredible size and fits nicely in the bottom of any bag. And because the stand is made to handle a variety of sizes (from phones to mid-sized tablets), it is perfect to use with both my iPhone and iPad. It also has a wider keyboard than the Logitech, which is a nice break sometimes for my hands. Unfortunately I can’t comment on battery life yet, as I haven’t had it long enough to require a charge.
- wider keyboard/keys
- folding capability
- quick bluetooth connection
- surface retains fingerprints easily
- does not function as a cover (although that can also be a pro, depending on your needs)
The Zagg Pocket Keyboard can be purchased on their website for $69.99, as well as via authorized retailers like Amazon and T-Mobile.