Freedom Pro Keyboard Review


18.06.2010

Freedom Pro Keyboard Review

Nowadays smartphones come with great keyboards, being either physical or tactile, though sometimes people feel the need for a larger keyboard so they can type faster and more comfortable. In my case, I’m very happy with my Blackberry Bold’s keyboard, though I would never say no to a full-sized keyboard when I need to write a blog post or a longer email.

Fortunately, the Freedom Pro Keyboard tries to satisfy our needs for a full-sized keyboard and you will see in this article if it manages to do its job right or not.

The Freedom Pro Keyboard connects to your device through Bluetooth and has both SPP and HID support, so it’s compatible with most smartphones and many other devices. You can connect it to Blackberry smartphones ( OS 4.0 or later ), Windows Mobile Pocket PC and Windows Mobile Smartphone ( 5, 6, 6.1, and 6.5 ), Symbian S60 ( Nokia E and N series ), Symbian UIQ3 ( Sony Ericsson Smartphones ), Android OS ( 1.5, 2.0, 2.1 ), iPhone, iPod Touch ( OS 4.0 ), and the iPad. Along with this long list, it can also be used for many UMPCs, netbooks, PS3, and computers running either Windows, Linux, or Mac OS.

So, like I have already told you, I have tested the Freedom Pro Keyboard on my Blackberry Bold so I connected it through the SPP profile, turned it on and installed the driver on my smartphone. After that, it worked like a charm and I’ve had no issues with it, except that sometimes there’s a small latency after I press a key and it actually takes action, though it’s barely noticeable and I can bet it’s due to the Bluetooth speed.

Freedom Keyboard Pro

The 75 keys are split on 5 rows and it really gives you the feel you’re typing on an usual keyboard, just slightly smaller. The keys are really easy to push and I got used to it really fast. Also it’s designed especially for smartphones so it has a lot of features designed especially for them, like the 6 dedicated keys: Answer Call, End/Reject call, Open Messages/email, Open Address book, Open task and Open Calendar. There are also 12 user-configurable keys, which can make anybody get in love with it because it makes anything so much easier. Along with all those, there are also 6 keys, called SK1 – SK6 that emulate your smartphone’s main keys, like “select”, “back.”

It comes in three versions and there are more to go. Currently you can order the US/UK QWERTY version, German QWERTZ Version, or the Korean HANGUL Version. According to their website, French, Scandinavian and Chinese layouts are in the works right now.

The Freedom Pro Keyboard also comes with a great, elegant storage case to keep it safe and a device stand so you will feel like using a small computer. It runs on two AAA batteries which are said to offer it up to 90 hours of use and 3000 hours of standby, though I am not able to confirm that because I haven’t used it for that long yet. To save battery life, it goes automatically into power saver mode if not used for 15 minutes. I must say the AAA batteries are included in the package and installation / removal is very easy.

It’s also easy to carry, because it folds and only measures 319.2 X 102.9 X 9.6 mm (12.6 X 4.0 X 0.38 ins.) opened, and 162.5 X 102.9 X 19.2 mm (6.4 X 4.0 X 0.75 ins.) closed. Fortunately, it has a hinge lock to stop it from folding when you are using it, but you should be careful because it might break if you try to close it when locked if you pull too hard. Mine didn’t yet, though I did that a few times. It weight 258g with the batteries in, so it weights about 2 times more than my smartphone, which is not really that much.

It also comes with a Quick Start Guide that will help you get it running in just a few minutes. All you have to do is turn it on, set it on SPP or HID, download the driver, then pair the keyboard to your smartphone and you’re ready to go. It’s almost as simple as connecting to another smartphone or to a¬†Bluetooth¬†headphone.

Really I tried to find something bad to say about it, but there isn’t much to say, except the latency between the keystroke and actual action, which is nearly not noticeable. The Freedom Keyboard Pro makes me believe the team behind it though about everything and they’ve really made a great gadget.

In conclusion, we recommend this keyboard for everyone who wants to transform his smartphone into a netbook and especially those who need to write a but more on their smartphone. It can make the job much easier for quite a low price and there’s also a discount right now, being 40% cheaper. You can order the Freedom Keyboard Pro now for $89.95.

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