So, after suffering a few years with a flaky iPad Air 2, my lovely wife convinced me that it was OK to treat myserlf last week, and I got myself a 9.7" iPad Pro with the Smart Keyboard.
To be honest, I've been super unhappy with Apple keyboards of late. They seem to think that everything should be a laptop keyboard - super - compact layout and a super squishy typing feel.
However, i my opinion Apple's superior mechanical designers are firing on all cylinders with the new iPad Pro Smart Keyboard.
The layout feels like a regular laptop keyboard. The keys aren't cramped at all like the ones on the old iPad Air 2 Keyboartd case I used to own, and the typing feel is surprisingly good for a device that folds into the caser and barely adds a quarter inch to the combined thickness of the device with the case closed.
It's also notably lighter than the old keyboard case, which added markedly to the overall weight of my iPad.
As I write this I'm 35,000 feet up in an airplane on my way to a Florida vacation to visit my in-laws and two of my best friends who recently moved there.
Typing on this keyboard is surprisingly comfortable. In fact I'll go out on a limb and say it's the most comfortable mobile keyboard I've ever used.
Unlike other iPad keyboards, the Smart Keyboard mates with the iPaad Pro through a mag connector where the case attaches to the iPad. This means that Bluetooth pairing isn't required which is a big win. Anyone who's used a Bluetooth keyboard will know that they can sometimes need to be repaired, usually at the least convenie moments.
There's also no external power source required - no battery to worry about having to charge or fiddle extra cables to have to haul around.
It's more expensive than the average Bluetooth keyboard, but from where I sit you get a lot of value for those extra dollars.
In short, this keyboard is precisely the kind of super elegant, ergonomic design with unusual attention to detail that made me an Apple hardware fan all those years ago.