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  • (upbeat music)

  • - The new Magic Keyboard for the iPad Pro

  • is a very well-made,

  • very expensive add-on for this tablet.

  • It has this backlit keyboard here and a track pad,

  • finally, and when you open it up it sort of

  • floats the iPad just so it ends up being

  • a little bit closer to your eye holes.

  • I am continually impressed with how well-built

  • this thing is.

  • And that is very good, since the 11-inch version

  • costs $299, and this 12.9-inch version here costs 349.

  • The Magic Keyboard though is just really well-executed.

  • It does everything that it was designed to do.

  • I'm just not totally sure that it was the right design

  • in the first place.

  • (upbeat music)

  • But I wanna start out with what's great about this keyboard.

  • It's the keyboard.

  • The keys are scissor switches with a really solid feel,

  • good travel, and a pretty decent thunk.

  • I mean, give it a listen compared to the old Smart Keyboard

  • for the iPad Pro.

  • (keys clicking)

  • It's not bad, right.

  • Now the keys, they're not quite as stable as

  • the brand-new Magic Keyboard

  • on the 16-inch MacBook Pro, but whatever.

  • These keys are great.

  • I really enjoy typing on them,

  • and they are backlit in in the dark.

  • But you can't adjust the backlighting

  • on the keyboard itself.

  • You have to dig into the iPad Settings app,

  • like way down in General.

  • Now usually the keyboard lights are at the right brightness,

  • so it's not too big of a problem,

  • but if you wanna watch a movie or something,

  • it's a real hassle to dig in there.

  • And that hassle would've been solved

  • if Apple had just included a function row of keys

  • above the number row of keys.

  • But it didn't, which is kind of annoying.

  • But look, this keyboard is solid.

  • There is no flex to it.

  • It is incredibly stable when you open it up,

  • and it also holds the iPad pretty securely too.

  • It's hard to get it outta there.

  • And I really like how it does lift the screen up

  • and bring it a little bit closer to your face

  • than other laptops do.

  • That's not something that I realized that I wanted,

  • but turns out I totally did.

  • Plus, honestly it does just kinda look cool floating there.

  • It does pass-through charging through this USB-C port

  • on the side here, but you can't connect

  • like data accessories to it.

  • But that's nice, it still means that you don't have

  • dopey charging cables hanging off the side

  • of the middle here.

  • The track pad is also really good.

  • It's small by MacBook standards,

  • but I had no problem getting used to it

  • because I've used Surface laptops for a really long time.

  • But this one is actually better than the track pad

  • on Surface laptops because you can click anywhere

  • on the track pad, and it'll still click.

  • It's also really smooth.

  • It just, it feels really nice.

  • Now as far as track pad support on iPad OS goes,

  • I said before that I think Apple basically nailed it.

  • And it's better to have a track pad on a keyboard case now,

  • so it's like much more convenient.

  • And, unlike the bridge keyboard,

  • everything on this track pad just works.

  • The gestures for switching between apps are intuitive.

  • I like how the cursor snaps to on-screen elements,

  • to make them easier to click.

  • And editing text is much better, mostly.

  • Even though Apple has nailed it,

  • a lot of other apps haven't.

  • Google Docs is still a mess on the iPad.

  • And there're a bunch of other apps that use non-standard

  • UI elements that feel janky,

  • like you can't swipe to archive stuff.

  • Hopefully that gets fixed.

  • So great, right?

  • What's the problem?

  • Well, there's a few.

  • The first is weight.

  • The Magic Keyboard is heavy.

  • This 12.9-inch version when you've got it attached,

  • the whole package weighs just shy of three pounds.

  • That's 25% heavier than the 12.9-inch Smart Keyboard.

  • It's heavier than the iPad Air.

  • It's about the same weight as my MacBook Pro,

  • my 13-inch MacBook Pro.

  • But, it's actually thicker

  • than my 13-inch MacBook Pro, which eh.

  • Now I don't have the 11-inch version to test,

  • but I think 25% heavier than the Smart Keyboard

  • is like a safe bet.

  • And, while the floating screen is great,

  • the available angles on it are not.

  • You could have it anywhere between 90 and 130 degrees,

  • which actually isn't that much.

  • Look, I'm just gonna make a comparison here.

  • And we're just gonna sit with it together

  • for a minute.

  • This is my Surface Pro X.

  • It runs Windows on ARM,

  • and that's not great for many reasons, I know.

  • But we're just talking about the hardware here.

  • Now the screen on the Surface Pro X is about

  • the same size.

  • The track pad is about the same size.

  • But the Surface here has a keyboard with a function row

  • on it, and, if you want, you can put it at nearly

  • any angle that you want, almost completely flat.

  • And if you wanna watch a movie or something,

  • you can flip the keyboard behind it.

  • And it's thinner than the iPad Pro with the Magic Keyboard,

  • and it's lighter.

  • And, I don't know, the webcam is in the right place.

  • It's a really good thing that everybody knows

  • that these are different devices

  • for different needs and different people

  • so that there's no reason that the comparison

  • between these two things that I just did

  • is gonna cause any arguments at all.

  • Here's the thing.

  • This is a very well-made keyboard.

  • And Apple made choices when they made it.

  • They made a choice not to put a kickstand

  • on the iPad itself.

  • Fine.

  • They made a choice about how this whole hinge thing

  • would work, and if you agree with those choices,

  • this thing is amazing.

  • I'm just not sure that I do.

  • I think that it's just a little bit limiting.

  • The big story with the iPad over the past two years

  • is whether it's a computer,

  • or what kind of computer, or whatever.

  • So look, I'm tired of that argument,

  • but a lot of people are going to ask whether

  • this Magic Keyboard makes the iPad a better computer.

  • And I think that's the wrong question.

  • The right question is whether this keyboard makes

  • the iPad a better iPad.

  • And well, my iPad Pro is, by far, the most versatile,

  • do-anything screen that I own.

  • I use it at my desk like a laptop,

  • sitting in a chair just browsing around doing

  • some light work, watching movies or reading in bed,

  • as a second screen for my Mac using Sidecar,

  • as a second computer next to my Mac

  • when my Mac is chugging.

  • I just need to listen to some Spotify or whatever.

  • You can even now, with the track pad support,

  • use the iPad as like a desktop computer

  • with an external monitor with your track pad

  • and your keyboard sitting in front of it.

  • It can do a lot.

  • Does the Magic Keyboard improve all those situation,

  • or does it add more situations to that stack?

  • Yeah.

  • It works really well when you're at a desk,

  • or you're working in a chair because it feels

  • like a laptop.

  • And honestly, my favorite feature of this keyboard case

  • is that it makes it easier to just grab the iPad

  • and walk away with it.

  • So I love this keyboard case 'cause it helps me not

  • use a keyboard case.