These Folding Keyboards Save Space and Let You Take Your Typing On the Go
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A keyboard is one of the most-used accessories for every computer, and Bluetooth technology now allows you to use one without being tethered to a wire. But full-sized keyboards are still quite big, so they’ll take up a lot of room on your desk whether you’re using them or not. If you’ve moved on from a PC or Mac to a tablet, you may also be struggling with using the built-in touch-screen keyboard.
Both of those problems can be fixed with a relatively new tech accessory: a foldable Bluetooth keyboard. These full-sized keyboards have a hinge in the middle that allows you to halve their size without sacrificing functionality. The keyboard is divided completely in half; if you look down at your current keyboard, the split happens between the G and the H keys.
The keycaps on these keyboards are slightly smaller than on a typical Bluetooth keyboard, but the difference isn’t substantial enough to bother most typists. The biggest difference is the space bar, which is cut in half, and accessible on both sides. If you’ve traveled with a tablet and wished you had a physical keyboard, or want one you can keep off your desk when taking notes or watching videos, you’ll find what you’re looking for in our guide.
How Do Wireless Keyboards Work?
The best wireless keyboards pair to your phone or tablet via Bluetooth technology. Once connected, you can use these keyboards just like a regular one; they all have a full set of keys and most of the same functions are a traditional wired keyboard.
Most of the best folding keyboards will provide the same hand positioning and finger-feel of regular keyboards, though they’ll be a lot thinner and in some cases the keys are narrower or closer together. Because of their portable (read: thinner) size and foldability, you may not get the same “clicking” sound and weight you’re used to with classic keyboards.
What You Need to Know Before Buying a Foldable Bluetooth Keyboard
There are many factors to think about when choosing the right foldable Bluetooth keyboard for you; below are the most important ones, which we considered while we were researching this list.
Size and Weight: The point of having a foldable Bluetooth keyboard is its portability, which depends on its size and weight. All of the keyboards we chose weigh under half a pound, and fold up to be roughly half a foot long. You can easily keep them in a desk drawer, backpack, or the accessory pocket found on many laptop sleeves.
Compatibility: Because these keyboards connect via Bluetooth, most of them can work with PCs, Macs, iOS, and Android devices. We made sure to pick options that had function keys (the row on top of the letters), that allow you to adjust settings like screen brightness and volume with a single tap.
Battery Life: The foldable Bluetooth keyboards we picked all have rechargeable batteries rated to last roughly 40 hours per charge. That’s enough power to use the keyboard through long-distance flights, or an hour a day for over one month.
1. Joyzy Bluetooth Folding Keyboard
If you want a foldable Bluetooth keyboard that’s extremely familiar to the one you’re using already, this is the right pick.
At 5.8 ounces, it’s the lightest keyboard in our guide, and it’s only 5.7 inches long when folded. The chicklet-shaped keys are all in the same configuration as Microsoft and Apple’s keyboards, with one exception. Instead of having a row of dedicated function keys, it combines the function and number keys.
Here’s what that means. If you hit the number keys normally, you’ll get the numbers 0-9. If you hit those same keys with the fn (function) key pressed, they can be used to control your device’s volume, play or pause your music, or lock the device. Think of it like holding the shift key to make capital letters.
This keyboard has a battery life of 40 hours, and charges via MicroUSB. You can plug it into your computer or a power adapter — the one that came with your phone will work fine. This foldable Bluetooth keyboard will automatically power on when it’s opened, and power off when it’s closed, so you’ll never accidentally drain its battery.
It doesn’t have some of the cool extras the other foldable Bluetooth keyboards in this guide have, but it checks all of the boxes if you want a smooth transition from a standard Bluetooth keyboard to a foldable one.
Pros: This foldable Bluetooth keyboard’s layout is nearly identical to the one you’re already using, but it’s significantly lighter and heavier.
Cons: No extras.
2. iClever BK06 Bluetooth Keyboard
If your job and hobbies require you to sit at a computer and type for eight or nine hours a day, this foldable Bluetooth keyboard has a must-have feature.
It weighs 6.2 ounces, and folds to a length of 6.5 inches, so it’s not the smallest option on this list, but it’s pretty close. It has a rechargeable battery that the manufacturer says can last for forty hours per charge, and recharges via MicroUSB.
This keyboard has a couple of marquee features that help it stand out. The first is its key positioning. Instead of facing toward you, the keyboard bends in a slight V-shape, with the keys angled at 160 degrees.
This was done on purpose; it makes the keyboard more ergonomic to use, because it’s tailored to the way your arms and wrists would naturally fall when you set them on a table. Using an ergonomic keyboard like this may help reduce your chances of developing RSI (repetitive strain injury), which occurs when parts of your body are bent in unnatural ways for several hours every day.
The downside is that this keyboard may take some additional time to get used to if you’re new to ergonomic keyboards. It can feel a little awkward to have your hands spread further apart, and may throw some touch typists off. Still, if you can get used to it, there is a potential upside.
This keyboard’s other strength is that it can be paired to three devices simultaneously, and allows you to switch between them by holding the fn (function) key, and hitting the Q, W, or E key. Holding the fn key while hitting keys in the number row will adjust device settings like screen brightness and volume.
If you’ve found that your fingers and wrists hurt after a long day of typing, and you’re ready to learn how to use a keyboard with a different layout, this is your best bet.
Pros: This foldable Bluetooth keyboard’s angled shape is easier on your wrists and hands than a traditional keyboard. You can pair three devices to it, and switch between them very easily.
Cons: If you’re not used to the keyboard’s shape, it may take some time to get used to.
3. Jelly Comb Dual Mode Bluetooth Folding Keyboard
If you’d like a foldable Bluetooth keyboard with a built-in trackpad that can be used as a mouse, this one is for you.
Its design differs from the other keyboards we’ve recommended because it doesn’t fold exactly in half. Instead, two sections on the left and right sides fold inward toward a larger one in the middle. The left section has key rows that end in R, F, and C, while the right section contains a trackpad. Despite its three-fold design, the keyboard is still under six inches long when it’s folded up. It is heavier, though, at 10.4 ounces. Still, that’s well under three quarters of a pound.
The trackpad can only be used on Windows, Android, and iPads running iOS version 13.4 or higher. According to the manufacturer, trackpad support on iOS is still being developed, so you may not be able to use all of its features. The keyboard is fully compatible with these three operating systems, though. Strangely, despite using Bluetooth, this keyboard cannot be used at on all on devices running MacOS.
This foldable Bluetooth keyboard has a rechargeable battery, which the manufacturer says can last up to 560 hours in standby mode. It can be fully recharged in about two hours via MicroUSB. While this is a Bluetooth keyboard, you have the option to plug it into a computer with its charging cable, and use it as a wired one instead.
If you’ve been looking for a way to replace both your Bluetooth keyboard and mouse with a single accessory, or want a compact way to carry both accessories with you when you travel, this is a good choice. If you run MacOs, we recommend looking at the other keyboards listed in our guide.
Pros: A tri-fold design allows this foldable Bluetooth keyboard to have a full-sized key layout and a trackpad without adding thickness.
Cons: It doesn’t support MacOS. Trackpad support is limited on iOS.
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