Poor iPhone! No matter the scope of superpowered features it receives or world-changing apps made for the thing, one thing remains amiss in the eyes of even the most loyal iOS sympathizers: typing. Texting and writing emails on the billion dollar darling from Cupertino is ever hampered by the absence of a physical keyboard. Apple has enhanced the experience over the years with cool tricks and functions. There’s also no end to the number of companies pushing out 3rd party companion peripherals to assuage the issue. Still the overall problem remains. Until now!
The folks at Nuu have had enough. Nuu is committed to producing worthy iPhone and iPad accessories and peripherals. The Nuu MiniKey Bluetooth Keyboard is an elegant answer to “QWERTY-lessness” of your favorite calling device. It’s a iPhone case with a slide out QWERTY keyboard with backlighting. Nuu offers versions for iPhone 4/4s and a taller version for longer iPhone 5. The package contains a the case/keyboard, manual and USB charging cable.
Setup is as easy as pairing a set of Bluetooth speakers or Bluetooth headset. But first, your iPhone easily slides into the case by pressing the opposite edges of the phone down until you hear it snap into place. Then navigate your phone to the Bluetooth pairing section of the settings. Slide the toggle switch to “on” found on your Nuu MiniKey, so it’s in a pairing mode. Then select the MiniKey from the your iPhone’s list of available Bluetooth devices. That’s it–easy-peesey.
It’s notable, that there is some funny business with retaining a Bluetooth connection after the MiniKey has taken gone to sleep. The MiniKey will unlock your iPhone by sliding the keyboard down, but not if you’ve set a password. Sliding the keyboard up, however, does not lock your phone. That would be nice, though. Also from sleep, the MiniKey takes several seconds to re-pair with your phone and will not unlock your phone when in this state. You can wait for it to pair and then press a couple random buttons to get it to spring back to life. Still it’s an unnecessary nuisance.
Alas, when it’s all paired everything is as right as rain. The MiniKey Bluetooth keyboards works great. I was afraid it would have a flimsy hollow lack of heft, like the FAVI Bluetooth keyboard for PC. Not at all! It feels great, the buttons are responsive and spaced well enough apart for smooth typing. This is a fully featured keyboard replete with 42 keys including directional buttons, Cmd key for command shortcuts (ex. CMD + C will copy text), FN button for accessing alternate key functions and numbered keys. The entire unit only weighs 90 grams. Plus the Li-Po 380mAh lithium battery can sustain rampant typing for up to 6 hours.
One thing I can’t speak on is the durability of the case. I dare not test the level of protection this affords your iPhone for fear of compromising the keyboard functionality. As long as you don’t drop the thing, you’re golden. This is by far the most impressive and feature rich iPhone keyboard to hit the GR offices. An added boon…! Since it connects via Bluetooth, you can pair this thing without placing your iPhone in it and use it at a distance or while your phone is seated in a different dock.
Nuu MiniKey Bluetooth Keyboard for iPhone 5
- Adds long sought-after functionality to iPhone
- Backlighting for dim and dark settings
- Command key shortcuts
- Slide-in/out mechanic for a reduced footprint
- Some Bluetooth re-pairing issues upon waking from sleep
The Nuu MiniKey Bluetooth Keyboard is available at Amazon for $60.57.