Brydge has a new feature-laden keyboard case for the low-cost 10.2-inch iPad. It brings a large trackpad to this tablet. And the Brydge 10.2 Max+ offers 4-foot MIL-STD drop protection thanks to a built-in Otterbox case.
This company’s keyboards for the iPad Pro are aimed at professionals. The newest one for the low-cost iPad seems to be for younger users.
Brydge on Wednesday rolled out the first firmware update for its Pro+ keyboard for iPad Pro. It’s designed to fix some of the issues users and reviewers have been experiencing with the built-in trackpad — and it’s certainly a good start.
But there are some things you should be aware of before you rush off to buy a Pro+ for your iPad Pro.
One of the best keyboards money can buy for iPad Pro now comes with a built-in trackpad. The Brydge Pro+ is one of the first to truly embrace mouse support in iPadOS. And it costs a lot less than Apple’s official Magic Keyboard, which won’t debut until May.
Like almost every other Brydge keyboard I’ve used, this one delivers a terrific typing experience that you can rely on every day. It feels superbly comfortable, and it’s brilliantly designed. It makes your iPad feel like a MacBook in the most elegant way possible.
Despite all that — and my appreciation for Brydge as a company — it’s really hard for me to recommend the Pro+. It gets so many things right, but completely misses the mark where it really matters. Here’s my full Brydge Pro+ review after several weeks of use.
UPDATE: February 25, 2021: Brydge is currently preparing a big firmware update for the Pro+ that promises to eliminate its trackpad issues for good by adding native multitouch gestures. That means the Pro+ will soon offer exactly the same functionality as Apple’s own Magic Keyboard.
We have yet been able to test that firmware update, but we have heard that it lives up to Brydge’s promises. Bear that in mind before reading the rest of our original review below.
A year ago, when Apple introduced the latest iPad Pro models, I called the tablet the computer for everywhere. To this day, I still think the 2018 iPad Pro, complete with Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard Folio, is an incredible setup for tons of situations. At the same time, it’s anything but cheap, starting at $1,107 for an 11-inch model with keyboard and Pencil.
Then there’s the Mac laptop lineup. Apple’s current cheapest offering is the MacBook Air, also starting at $1,100. Fortunately, you don’t have to drop over a grand to get an incredibly versatile, powerful, and portable budget laptop made by Apple.
The Sentis Libra gives an iPad Pro a keyboard and trackpad, allowing it to act as both a tablet and a laptop — something no MacBook can do.
However, rival keyboard maker Brydge accuses Sentis of using its patented design. Cult of Mac has both a Libra prototype and the most recent Brydge Pro, and we compare the two and let everyone judge whether the accusations made against this device stand up.
The Libra is undoubtedly great, including a highly-functional trackpad. So the real question is, who deserves credit for the design?