When Apple unveiled the iPad Pro 9.7-inch model we rejoiced. While the larger 12.9-inch version was a triumph it felt like something that couldn’t quite go all in against the ultra-thin laptops that have taken over today’s coffee shops.
For us it was the smaller 9.7-inch version that we could see replacing our MacBook Air for long train journeys, meetings and yes, sessions of doing not very much in a Starbucks.
To help promote that idea Apple had its own keyboard case in the form of the Smart Keyboard and while it was initially fine, it wasn’t really what we had hoped for. It lacked a backlight and dedicated shortcut buttons, two things that we really needed if we were going to genuinely consider it a replacement to our MacBook.
It was also quite difficult to use on your lap, something that again was crucial for use in press briefings, meetings and overcrowded airports.
Well here we are a considerable number of months later and Logitech have come through with what could well be the answer to all your problems.
It’s called the CREATE Keyboard and along with having one of the best typing experiences on a case it’s sturdy, stylish and even comes with a holder for the Apple Pencil.
This isn’t the first CREATE keyboard that Logitech have made, nor indeed the first keyboard case that they’ve ever made.
We’ll be honest though, it’s not often that a keyboard case comes around and in our experience of using them Logitech have suffered just as much as every other manufacturer. Finding the right balance between bulk and yet offering the same functionality you’d expect from a laptop is really hard.
While the CREATE keyboard does make some compromises, but it does so in the right way.
The keyboard case is considerably thicker than Apple’s Smart Keyboard, there’s no getting around that, thankfully though it’s still light enough that it doesn’t feel like you’ve just created another MacBook.
Where the case really shines through is how it integrates the iPad. It only clips onto one half, cutting on weight while allowing you to easily click the tablet in and out of the case should you want to wander around with just the iPad.
The case itself is made from a mixture of tough plastic fibres and hard plastic which again keeps things light yet sturdy. Lets put it this way, you could drop it and everything would probably be just fine.
The keyboard itself is where Logitech have accomplished a win. It’s a joy to use. Despite having that smaller 9.7-inch form factor typing on the CREATE never once felt cramped, while the keys have plenty of travel to feel satisfying.
Shortcut keys allow you to change brightness, volume, backlight brightness and even lock or unlock the tablet.
What’s even better is the case doesn’t need charging, it takes power directly from the iPad Pro thanks to the Smart Connector on the side of the tablet.
It will drain the Pro’s battery, but the difference so far has been pretty negligible if we’re honest.
Who Should Buy The Logitech CREATE Keyboard?
£109.99 might seem like a lot for a keyboard case but consider this: Apple’s own version costs £129. So not only are you saving money but you’re getting a typing/productivity experience that’s finally on par with the MacBook you were hoping to replace. If you’re buying an iPad Pro to be productive, then this really is a no brainer.
Who Shouldn’t Buy The Logitech CREATE Keyboard?
The iPad Pro isn’t just a productivity device, it’s a creativity tool as well. If the sole reason you’re buying one is for portable drawing or media consumption then there’s really not much reason to add the additional bulk to an incredibly thin and powerful device.