In the age of smartphones and tablets, physical keyboards can often be overlooked as a relic of a bygone era. In truth, however, there’s still a number of personal and business tasks that demand more than a touchscreen – activities in which a physical keyboard and mouse prove more advantageous.
Recent advancements in sensors, wireless connectivity, and manufacturing processes make today’s keyboards infinitely superior to those that came before. Nevertheless, each design, layout, and manufacturer has its own set of pros and cons. This article is intended to help you select the best wireless keyboard for your particular needs.
How to Choose the Best Wireless Keyboard
What will you be using your keyboard for? Gaming while sitting in a cool gaming chair? Coding in your room? Writing a novel at your desk? Media center controller? General usage?
This question is important because your particular use can greatly influence the keyboard you choose. For example, in the realm of writing a novel, a few milliseconds of delay won’t be noticed, however, it can be the determining factor in a win or loss in the world of computer gaming.
In recent years, dozens of wireless standards have become available to developers and manufacturers. Despite the hype around some, nothing beats Bluetooth or 2.4GHz over USB when it comes to ubiquity.
Speaking frankly, it doesn’t matter too much which one you choose as they’re essentially the same. In fact, Bluetooth also operates at 2.4GHz!
The primary reason for choosing one over the other is convenience. Nowadays just about every device, from laptops and mini-PCs, to phones and speakers, and even refrigerators comes equipped with Bluetooth.
When it comes to 2.4GHz over USB, the foremost drawback is it takes up valuable USB port space that could be used for other computer peripherals.
Another thing to consider is size. Keyboards come in many different sizes from ridiculously tiny 40% keyboards, which consist of only a few absolutely required keys, to 100% full-size boards that have more keys than most users will ever need.
If you’re reading this, odds are you’re looking for a keyboard that’s somewhere in the range of 87% to 100%. 87% boards, also known as TLK (tenlesskey) boards have everything most users need sans the number pad. Gamers usually require a number pad, therefore tend to be in the market for 100% boards.
Lastly, anytime we’re dealing with wireless technology, battery life can be an issue. When it comes to wireless devices such as phones, tablets, and laptops, battery life is often the cause of a frustration. Wireless keyboards, however, generally cause less trouble.
Whereas most devices are constantly performing background operations that drain battery life, wirelessly keyboards, technically speaking, are “on” only for the split second it takes to strike a key. Typically, wireless keyboard batteries tend to last for several months at a time.
Now that we have the basics covered, let’s discuss some of the best wireless keyboards on the market.
1. Anker Wireless Keyboard
The Anker is an ultra-compact wireless board that takes up roughly one-third the space of tradition keyboards. It’s been preprogrammed to be compatible with a broad range of devices including Windows, Android, and various Apple products.
According to the manufacturer’s documents, these keyboards work for up to six months on a single charge and have a reported lifespan of 3 million keystrokes. All Anker keyboards come with an 18-month warranty.
- Relatively short lifespan
2. Rii RK901
The RK901 from Rii is a full size, 104-key wireless keyboard. Each Rii RK901 is designed to be system agnostic. You’ll have no problem connecting this super slim keyboard to your device no matter if you’re running Windows, Mac, Linux, or some other OS.
Each keyboard measures in at 16 x 1.5 x 7.2-inches and comes with a tiny, plug-and-play 2.4GHz USB receiver.
- Great for general usage
- Full size
- No Bluetooth
3. Logitech G613 LIGHTSPEED
Any veteran gamer will tell you that it’s a huge debate whether mechanical or membrane keyboards are better for gaming, but we feel this G613 LIGHTSPEED is the best wireless gaming keyboard. Coming equipped with ultra-quiet, supremely precise Romer G mechanical switches, the G613 creates a more immersive gaming experience than any other comparable board.
Each Romer G switch is rated to last for 70 million clicks. These one-of-a-kind key switches provide gamers unmatched speed and therefore the edge over competitors using inferior keyboards. In fact, the phrase “LIGHTSPEED” refers to the mind-blowing 1ms report rate delivered by the G613.
Power users have the ability to program certain in-game commands to predesignated keys. Each G613 can connect to multiple devices at once via Logitech’s multi-host technology. These keyboards are powered by two AA batteries which deliver power for 18 months.
To see a few more of gaming options, check our list of the best gaming keyboards.
- Precise and durable Romer-G switches
- Multi-host capabilities
- Programmable keys
- 1ms report rate
- Somewhat expensive
4. Apple Magic Keyboard
Mac keyboards haven’t changed too much in terms of appearance throughout the years, but they’ve definitely improved in usability. If you’re looking for the best wireless keyboard for Mac, this is your best bet. Designed by Apple for Apple, the Magic Keyboard, as it’s called, is a low-profile, Bluetooth connected board that’ll fit right at home in any Apple-dominated workspace.
Apple’s Magic keyboard has been engineered to be lightweight, precise, and above all, comfortable. These 11 x 4.5 x .43-inch keyboards will work with any Mac that’s version 10.11 or higher.
- Aesthetically beautiful
5. Logitech K400 Plus
Logitech’s K400 wireless keyboard was made with media center PCs in mind. It’s been engineered to offer the best of both worlds, combining a wireless keyboard with a touchpad mouse. With the K400, you can sit back and relax as you peruse the interface of your media PC from up to 33-feet away.
Perhaps the most impressive feature of the K400 is the user-friendliness. Nowadays many computer accessories can be overly complicated, but not the K400. There’s virtually no learning curve. Anyone familiar with operating a laptop will find this keyboard very easy to operate.
In addition, the K400 features an array of mediacentric buttons that allow for instant manipulation of volume, audio/video playback, and browser navigation.
All-in-all, if you’re in the market for a top-of-the-line, feature packed keyboard for your media center, check out the Logitech K400. If you’d like to learn more about all-in-one wireless keyboard and mouse combos, click here.
- Designed specifically for media PCs
- Built-in trackpad
- Connects via USB only
6. Microsoft Surface Keyboard
The product designers at Microsoft went back to the drawing board with this one. One of the simplest, most beautiful products the company has put out in years, the Surface keyboard has been designed to work flawlessly with the company’s flagship line of Surface devices.
Despite the fact it looks a bit similar to the Apple keyboard in terms of aesthetics, the Microsoft Surface keyboard is a well-built, high-quality wireless keyboard. These boards have been designed to work with latest line of OSes from Windows as well as MacOS 10.10.5 and newer. It makes its connection via Bluetooth 4.0.
Check our article about wireless mice to find a worthy match for the Surface keyboard.
- Aesthetically beautiful
- Full size
- Works seamlessly with Surface devices
- Rather expensive
7. HP K3500
The HP K3500 is the ideal keyboard for anyone looking for an authentic, full-size HP keyboard. The K3500 connects to your device by way of wireless USB and has an effective range of 30ft. This keyboard features modern, chiclet-style keys and dedicated buttons for certain controls such as audio/video stop, play, fast-forward, and rewind.
To compensate for the loss of USB real estate, the HP K3500 has been designed to take full advantage of HP’s Link-5 technology. Essentially, Link-5 allows you to connect up to 5 different keyboards, mice, and similar I/O devices to one USB receiver.
The K3500 has been designed to work with Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8 and 10.
- Full size
- Sturdy keys
- Link-5 compatible
- Limited to Windows-based operating systems
- USB only
8. Arteck HB030B
If you’re looking to add a little color to your workspace, try the Arteck HB030B. This sleek, wireless mini-keyboard comes in at 9.7 x 6 x 0.24-inches making it perfect for college students and professionals on-the-go.
It features a 7 color LED backlight with brightness control and compatibility across a broad range of devices. In fact, there’s not a single mainstream gadget that the Arteck HB030B can’t be paired with. Whether you’re using Mac, PC, iPad, iPhone, Galaxy, Nexus, or any other mainstream device with Bluetooth connectivity, the HB030B has you covered.
This keyboard is powered by a rechargeable lithium battery. In your package, you’ll receive your keyboard, charger, a manual, and a two-year warranty. Oh, and did we mention you get all this for only about $20? What a steal!
- Beautiful array of colors
- Can’t easily replace the battery
9. Corsair K63 Wireless
Corsair’s K63 is one of the best gaming keyboards released in the past few years. Outfitted with an Ice Blue LED backlight, Cherry MX mechanical switches, and Bluetooth, the K63 provides everything most gamers will need to outplay the competition.
The K63 is intended to be as portable as possible, therefore it lacks a number pad. One-hundred-percent authentic Cherry MX mechanical switches provide hardcore gamers peace of mind by ensuring keystrokes are registered as they’re intended to be. In other words, the gold contacts within the Cherry MX switches guarantee no keystroke ghosting such is found on lesser quality boards.
There’s also a group of dedicated media controls, built-in encryption, a detachable wrist rest, and assignable game / key macros.
- Feature packed
- Authentic Cherry MX switches
10. Logitech K780
The Logitech K780 is a full-size keyboard which is unique in that it can operate three different devices at once. The K780 allows users to pair phones, tablets, and computers in any configuration imaginable. Connect it to two different desktops and your tablet – or your phone, media center PC, and a laptop – or if you want to get weird, connect it to three different phones! The possibilities are limitless.
The K780 is designed to be compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and many other devices. What is even more impressive is that K780 is programmed to automatically recognize the various devices it is connected to. This impressive feature allows owners to continue using the keyboard shortcuts and hotkeys they’ve become familiar with.
According to the manufacturer, the Logitech K780 has an expected battery life of two-years.
- Beautiful design and layout
- Connects to multiple devices
- Works seamlessly with Logitech FLOW
- Not easy to clean
- Requires USB for certain connections