Aug 26th, 2015

Considering how powerful and accurate the best software keyboards have become, many smartphone and tablet users find hardware keyboards a thing of the past. Just ask BlackBerry. But one thing that’s forever? Power users.

Samsung – with their Galaxy Note series – is one of the few companies who have successfully tapped into the second-coming of the power using mobile market. The company went even further with the  Samsung Galaxy Note 5, unveiling a very BlackBerryish keyboard attachment accessory.

LG didn’t want Samsung to have all the fun, so they’ve announced a solution of their own, and one that works with any smartphone or tablet: the LG Rolly Keyboard.

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It definitely looks like a nice, big, full-size keyboard.

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But it rolls up into a nice compact cylinder for tucking into a bag or even your pocket.

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Will the idea stick? Not for smartphones, but this could be a pretty killer accessory to keep in tow for tablets.

All-in-one gadgets are a thing of beauty and to lug around an accessory it’s got to be pretty brilliant. It would need to provide enough utility to be vastly superior to the standalone option yet compact enough to be convenient, otherwise you might as well carry around a full-size keyboard or a laptop.

The sweet spot seems small here and it’s tough to know if LG hit it with the Rolly Keyboard without putting it through the paces of a full review.

Straight from the horse’s mouth:

In an effort to capture a larger share of the fast-growing mobile accessories market, LG Electronics (LG) will unveil the industry’s first solid rollable wireless portable keyboard at IFA 2015 in Berlin, Germany. Unlike other portable keyboards on the market, LG’s Rolly Keyboard (model KBB-700) folds up along the four rows to create an easy-to-carry “stick” that fits into one’s pocket as easily as any purse or briefcase.

Featuring high-contrast keys and a fold-out mobile device stand, typing on Rolly Keyboard is extremely comfortable because its 17mm key pitch is nearly as generous as the 18mm key pitch found on most desktop keyboards. Made of impact-resistant and durable polycarbonate and ABS plastic, typing on the keyboard offers satisfying tactile feedback not found on flexible silicone keyboards. Two sturdy arms fold out to support smartphones as well as tablets1 in an upright position. Simply unfolding the Rolly Keyboard enables the auto pairing function to connect easily to two different devices at the same time via Bluetooth 3.0 with the ability to toggle between the two with a simple key press. A single AAA battery powers the keyboard for up to three months of average use.

“LG Rolly Keyboard is just one of the many premium input devices we’ll be unveiling in the coming months as we expand our accessories offerings,” said Seo Young-jae, vice president in charge of Innovative Personal Devices at LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company. “The goal was to create a product that could add more value to LG smartphones and tablets at the same time offering a unique design proposition that hadn’t been explored before.”

What do you think: cool enough for power users and hardware keyboard lovers to consider? Or stick with an alternative?

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