moderated Re: BlueTooth Keyboard Recommendations
Correct, Logitech Options is required for Windows and then only if you want the function keys to work as regular function keys which of course I think most of us want.
You simply pair the keyboard to your first device by pressing and holding F1 for about 5 seconds, then pair it.
Repeat with F2 and F3 if you have 3 devices.
After that it’s simply a matter of firmly pressing F1, F2 or F3 to switch to the device you want, if you have Logitech Options installed and enabled the function keys and if you are using the keyboard with a Windows PC then you have to press FN + F2 or F3 to switch to your other devices. Here is my setup:
F1 = my Windows laptop
F2 = my iPhone 8
F3 = our Apple TV
If I am on my Windows PC as I am now typing this email, if I wanted to switch to my iPhone or Apple TV, I would have to press FN + F2 to switch to my iPhone or FN + F3 to switch to the Apple TV.
If I am using my iPhone, i.e. I am on the F2 position and want to switch to either my Apple TV or PC I only have to press F1 for my laptop or F3 for my Apple TV, FN is not required here because the keyboard knows I am using it with iOS and here the function keys are simply media controls and F1, F2 and F3, the easy switch keys, do what they are programmed to do without pressing FN.
If you don’t install Logitech Options then even on a Windows PC you only have to press F1, F2 or F3 since in fact you have to press FN if you want, for example, Windows Help which is normally F1.
The FN key is simply a modifier, if you set the function keys to work as function keys you need the modifier to get the easy switch functionality, if you haven’t then the FN key is required to get the traditional function key action.
From: email@example.com <firstname.lastname@example.org> On Behalf Of Richard Turner
Sent: Tuesday, December 3, 2019 6:14 AM
Subject: Re: BlueTooth Keyboard Recommendations
My understanding is that the software is only required if you are connecting to Windows devices.
Ray, you didn’t say what your devices are; or did I miss part of the note?
🖖 Live long and prosper
Check out my web site at: www.turner42.com
From: email@example.com <firstname.lastname@example.org> On Behalf Of
Others with more experience may hav better info, but I think you do have to install and run the optional Logitec software in order for the keyboard to work correctly.
Installing the software does seem to require sighted assistance, though, so keep that in mind.
I tried that keyboard but could not work out how to switch it between devices. What did I miss and is it necessary to run the Logitech software with it?
If you want portable/compact the Logitech K780 is probably your best choice. It’s heavy because it’s made heavy since you can stand an iPad up in a channel which runs across from left to right above the function keys, but while it has a full numeric pad, it’s still fairly compact because it does not have the big gap you find on a full-size keyboard with the 6-pack and inverted cursor T. The K780 actually has the inverted cursor T, but it’s underneath the right shift key, think of the shift and enter key being the width of 3 other keys so the left arrow, down arrow and right arrow take up the same space as the shift key and in height the down arrow and up arrow above it are I think also the same height as the shift key.
The nice thing with this keyboard is that it is a Bluetooth keyboard, but it also comes with Logitech’s tiny unifying USB receiver so if you have a computer without Bluetooth (most likely your Windows 7 computer won’t have it), you can plug in the little dongle and use your Windows 7 PC that way and you can pair your Windows 1 PC which hopefully has Bluetooth via Bluetooth.
You can pair up to 3 devices with that keyboard so you could even pair it with your iPhone as a third device and all you have to do is press F1, F2 and F3 to switch between device 1, device 2 and device 3.
The one issue is that the function keys will not work as regular function keys unless you install the Logitech Options software where you can change this. It’s not a very accessible install, but if you have sighted help it only takes a minute or less and once installed and once you check the little checkbox to use the function keys you can just forget about it.
If you do this then on a Windows PC you have to press FN along with F1, F2 or F3 to switch devices, but if, for example FN + F3 switches to you riPhone, then in order to switch back to one of your Windows computer you only press F1 or F2 since iOS won’t require the FN key.
Having said all this, there is also a new full-size new Logitech keyboard and mouse combo I just read about. It is the Logitech MK850 and it can do 2 devices, also Bluetooth or USB dongle connectivity, also with regular batteries, I think 1 AA for the mouse and 2 AAA for the keyboard. The link I provided is for Best Buy Canada, but I’m sure you can easily find it on Best Buy or Amazon in the States, it is on Black Friday special for $79.95 Canadian so I assume in the States this may only be $59.99.
Lastly, there is the Logitech G613 which is a wireless mechanical gaming keyboard, but it of course is full-size and fairly heavy, but it has Windows keys both on the left and right of the spacebar, a working application key menu and you can also switch between Bluetooth and a USB dongle connection with a mechanical slider switch. It’s a very nice keyboard, I have the original version with the Romer G switches which I don’t like as much as the Cherry Blue switches I have on my other mechanical keyboards which are wired and from the “Das Keyboard” brand. I could have sworn the other day I stumbled across a G613 version with Blue switches but now I can’t seem to find it any more. The one I have I think is also on sale for $99 Canadian which means probably $79.99 US.
I am typing this on a Logitech K780 by the way which is my main keyboard I use at home with my laptop and for my iPhone if I need a keyboard there from time to time. I just saw both Best Buy Canada and Amazon Canada have it on sale for $73.98 which is also a good price, probably also $59.99 US or maybe even $49.99 in some places.
I hope this quiry will not be considered to be off topic for the list, since it does have implications for much of the computer work that I do.
Basically, I’m wondering if anyone has any recommendations for a good and reliable bluetooth keyboard.
I plan to use the keyboard for various purposes on both my main windows 10 computer, and the older Windows 7 computer I use for ham radio purposes.
I don’t know a whole lot about bluetooth keyboards, but here are a few requirements I’m thinking about:
1. I’d like the keyboard to be easily paired with both my computers an a fairly blind-friendly and straight-forward way
2. I’d like to be able to easily switch from one device to the next
3. Even though this is not totally necessary, I’d prefer that the batteries for the keyboard be replaceable, rather than built-in. Or, at the very least, I’d like to be able to charge any batteries easily and reliably.
4. I’d like the keyboard to be fairly portable, and to include the number pad.
5. I’d like the cost to be reasonable, but not exorbitant, since this is an optional computer accessory.
I realize that this might be a tall order, but thought I’d give it a try here. Some have recommended Logitec keyboards as a good fit for my needs, but I don’t know much about them.
Thanks for any assistance.