October 31, 2011, 11:38 AM — Tablets give us new possibilities when it comes to mobile computing. Unfortunately, they also give us new things to pack when it comes to carry-on luggage.
The problem is simple: While a tablet is a great addition to any gadget-lover's arsenal, it isn't typically a replacement for an existing device. Most of us still need physical keyboards for long-form typing -- and with business travel in particular, that means you're lugging around both a tablet and a laptop.
By adding a wireless keyboard to your tablet, though, you can transform it from a content-consuming slate into a far more versatile productivity machine. With the aid of a Bluetooth keyboard, I've been able to use my Motorola Xoom for all of my computing needs -- both work and personal -- while away from the office. The keyboard allows me to type desktop-style as needed; the rest of the time, I can use the tablet as a lightweight touch device.
When it comes to keyboards, Android tablets do have a disadvantage: Because the tablets come in a variety of sizes and formats, keyboard manufacturers tend not to create the convenient combination keyboards/cases that are available for the iPad. However, there are still some really excellent options out there.
Here are three full-sized, universally compatible keyboards worth considering.
Logitech's Tablet Keyboard for Android 3.0+ packs in plenty of bang for your buck. In addition to a superb keyboard, the product comes with a protective case that doubles as a stand for your tablet, allowing you to position the device vertically while you type. This all-in-one functionality adds a lot of value to the Logitech unit.
Of course, the most important thing is the keyboard itself -- and Logitech's creation is no slouch in that regard. The keys are nicely spaced out and very responsive; I found it comfortable to perform even the fastest of typing. The unit lies more or less flat when placed on a table, with an ever-so-slight upward slant.