Last month we reviewed Lenovo’s Miix 10 and I found the overpriced Atom powered Windows 8 tablet to be less than impressive. One of the possible saving points for the unit might be its optional detachable keyboard; today, we are taking a look at that keyboard and deciding if it lives up to the typical Lenovo keyboard (aka: superb) or falls flat on its face.
Feels great in hand, has a sturdy magnetic dock mechanism, not wireless thus no need for a separate battery, easy to attach and remove the tablet when needed.
Extremely awkward screen angle that is hard to work with, keyboard lacks depth, expensive ($99), and some may find it a bit heavy.
The Lenovo Miix 10 keyboard case has a decently comfortable keyboard and attaches nicely to your tablet without worry of it falling off. Overall, the terrible screen angle and expensive price tag of $99 for a non-wireless keyboard places this accessory in a category where you might constantly ask yourself if you’ve overpaid.
When taking the Miix 10 Keyboard case out of its box, it does appear and feel quite nice. Due to the built in keyboard, the case has a tiny bit of heft, but it makes the product feel premium and solid. The outside texture of the case is a graphite/carbon fiber pattern printed on what appears to be nylon. The top of the case is branded with Lenovo’s logo and two slits for the stereo speakers that sit on the back of the Miix 10 tablet.
Completely opening the case reveals Lenovo’s six row “AccuType” keyboard on one side and three clips for the tablet on the opposite side. Clipping the tablet into the case is extremely easy – simply place the bottom of the tablet against large bottom click and let it fall back and click into the upper two. Removing the tablet from the case can be accomplished by pushing back on the top two clips.
The keyboard itself is not wireless and works with the tablet via docking pins at the bottom of the tablet. When you click the tablet into the large case clip, it aligns the pins of the keyboard and the tablet itself. A wired keyboard provides a number of benefits including increased security and no need to separately charge the accessory, so we love it.
The case’s clips hold the Miix 10 sturdy and we have no fear of it becoming loose or falling out, though when you do need it, the tablet can be taken out easily.
The keyboard case itself, has a fold in it, so a user can choose to either keep the tablet lying flat or propped up for typing. The unit is kept in place with a magnet on the bottom of the large clip that attaches right above the keyboard. We were amazed at how strong the magnet actually was on our review unit; shaking it back and forth could not pry its grasp on the unit.
We do have to say that we are extremely disappointed with the angle the tablet sits at while typing. The case is downright impossible to use in your lap as it feels the tablet screen is sitting at an 80 degree angle, making it un-viewable. I am six feet tall and when sitting at a table with this unit, I have to keep it a full arm’s length away to view it well. If you had any trouble viewing the Surface with its original angle – stay away from this keyboard case, as it will be a nightmare.
Lastly down to the most important part – the keyboard. The case’s keyboard is fair when compared to regular keyboards, but very good when compared to other keyboard cases on the market. There is almost no key depth at all, but Lenovo has managed to give the keys a decent click. Comparing the Lenovo Miix 10 keyboard case to the Surface’s Touch Cover, I would have to say that the Touch Cover has a nicer overall feel.
The keyboard has a standard layout that includes built in hotkeys at the top including: volume control, brightness, and other quick Windows 8 functions. The Caps Lock key even has a small LED built in to it, so you can see if it is activated or not.
Overall, the case has a great exterior feel and a nice clicky keyboard that feels comfortable to type on. With that said, it is hard to recommend this tablet because of the angle the screen sits at – I can almost guarantee you will have an issue with it and for $99, that isn’t an option.
You can find the Lenovo Miix 10 keyboard case here at Lenovo.com.