Microsoft shows you why you should consider the Surface Ergonomic Keyboard

A few weeks ago, I said Microsoft was releasing some new Surface desktop accessories. One of those was the Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard rebranded and updated for the Surface Studio era.

Now dubbed the Surface Ergonomic Keyboard the $129.99 accessory is available to preorder for a November 21 release.

Besides a new grey theme (instead of black) the ergo keyboard features a "palm rest covered in stunning two-tone grey mélange Alcantara." That's the same fancy material used in the Signature Surface Type Cover announced a few months ago.

Additionally, the new Surface Ergonomic Keyboard has the number pad built into the device instead of a separate accessory like with the Sculpt edition and it has Bluetooth 4.0/4.1 LE for connectivity. Unfortunately, it's not backlit.

Ergonomic keyboards are divisive, but I've been a convert for years. While they take a good few days (maybe even weeks) to get used to it's hard to go back to a traditional style.

Check out Microsoft's new promo video posted today to see why you should maybe consider getting one as it's not just about style.

I'll be reviewing the new one as soon as we get it into our lab home and compare it to the previous Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard.

See Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard at the Microsoft Store (opens in new tab)

Anyone here an ergo keyboard fan? Sound off in comments and share your experience!

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • They don't need to sell it to me. I'm sold. They just need to actually get on and sell them, enough of this marketing well in advance of availability. I'd order one right now if I could.
  • Well, you can pre-order it ;) 3 weeks isn't too bad for something you didn't know existed a few weeks ago lol
  • Correct me I'm wrong (I hope I am), but they haven't announced a UK release date have they?
  • Ah, no. I'm guessing not until early next year, sorry. There's always eBay? lol
  • American layout confuses me. A hash (#) in place of pound (£), and the @ in a different place lol
  • hahahaha
  • Here in Australia we use the American keyboard layout, so I guess that's why we are getting them around the same time, very happy about this.
  • Yeah, it's a shame. A company the size of Microsoft, with their resources, you'd think it would be within their capabilities to paint a few different characters on some keys and do a worldwide release. Alas that does not appear to be the case.
  • You people speak English. Unless yall are slowly adding aboriginal language. Lol. Kidding.
  • These keyboards are great but only when you're sitting down. There's a trend of people using standing desks and I could barely use my keyboard while I'm standing. I need one that curve further downward so my wrist isn't at a 45 degree angle. Will you or mark guim do a review of this and do it while standing too please
  • The Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 comes with an attachable snap on plastic stand that causes the keys to be at just such an angle.
  • Same with the Sculpt Ergonomic - The removal of this is my only big negative from an ergonomics perspective
  • There is only one thing I want to know before deciding to buy one. Are the switches mechanical?
  • I'd say, most likely not. Ergo Mechanical keyboards are nearly unicorns and the ones that do exist all try to alter/adjust the keyboard layouts in much more substantial ways than Microsoft's ergo keyboards. I recently switched from an MS Sculpt Ergo keyboard to an AZIO mechanical keyboard with Blue switches and I really would love a hybrid between the two. I can't decide which one I prefer.
  • From the low profile keys, not likely.
  • They had me at, 'hello,' as well.
  • My only concern compared to the Sculpt Ergonomic (Which I'll probably re-buy rather than switch to this new one) is that it's lost the inverted tilt as the magnetic riser has been excluded in this one. The main ergonomic reason for the separate keypad was to bring the mouse closer to the keyboard, so it's another negative from a pure ergonomics point. It does look nice though and the keys look like they may be a little better (They look like the keys from the SP4/SB which are nice to type on) I'm just not sure whether the ergonomic aspects make this less comfortable for long coding sessions, there's really just the split design that makes this ergonomic where as the other features are dropped. It would have been amazing if they'd included a fingerprint option like in the non-ergonomic surface keyboard
  • I've been using Microsoft's ergonomic keyboards since the 90s. I absolutely love them, and have been considering getting a Sculpt Ergonomic keyboard to replace my current keyboard (I've typed on it so much, about 2/3 of the letters have worn smooth). I will need to try out the keyboard first, but at first glance, this new one seems like a better bet than the Sculpt (I far prefer the Num Pad in the traditional location). As for backlighting, I personally have never found that a necessity, and I would not really want that on a wireless keyboard, since I would want the battery to last as long as possible.
  • and I would not really want that on a wireless keyboard, since I would want the battery to last as long as possible.
    Yeah, that has to be the #1 reason. I just work at all hours and sometimes like the look of backlit. I could dream!
  • I went to the link in the article. At the bottom of the page where the Tech Specs are, under Product feature performance, backlight+ and blacklight- hot keys are there. Now I am guessing these are hot keys for screens? My type cover has backlighting buttons on it for the keyboard.
  • Any chance backlit keys makes it into v 2.0?
  • I am happy even if a get one week battery life out of a wireless dongleless Bluetooth backlit keyboard. Any suggestions please??? I am not too concerned with the ergonomics would rather want it to be small and portable for working wirelessly on continuum. I was sold on Microsoft universal foldable keyboard even though it cost more than my current lumia 550 but alas it doesn't have lights. Please everybody, especially the very knowledgeable respected mr.daniel any suggestions? ??
  • Unfortunately the K800 from logitech is only usable with a dongle, so would only be useful when docked - It is a wireless keyboard with backlighting though, and the lighting automatically comes on as your hands approach the keyboard and stays on until you move away - You can hope for a refresh of that that may have a bluetooth option - Their new premium mouse has both for example
  • Look up the Logitech K810. It uses Bluetooth and supports 3 devices at once (tablet, desktop and phone in my case). I've had it for about 9 months and, with the backlight set to Auto, it's only been recharged 2-3 times since purchase (light usage but on 99% of the time). My only gripe was the lack of a context key but I recently stumbled upon the undocumented [fn]+[Right Ctrl] combo and I now have 0 complaints. Best of luck finding what works for you.
  • I'm the opposite. Backlighiting is an absolute necessity for me. No backlighting means no sale. I'm a professional video editor and work in a dimly lit environment. A backlit keyboard is a must.
  • I guess I just learned to type long ago and don't actually look at the keyboard. But I could see where lots of changing key combos in video editing work might make me want to see the keys. Now that I look down at the keys, I noticed that as many as 2/3 of the keys don't even have letters on them anymore they are so worn down! :-)
  • Yeah, as a video editor you almost have to look down because you use a lot of key combinations and you lose your place on the keyboard as you're editing video (at least I do!).So I guess, like a lot of things, it depends on what you're doing. :-)
  • Would have definitely taken a wired version that had backlighting.
  • I'm hooked on Macro keys for editing / key combinations.  I have a keyboard with a whole heap built in (K95), but if I got this keyboard I'd use something like X-Keys on the side.  Seriously, for editing try Macro keys!  Here's an extreme example of Macro keys for video editing:
  • Have you ever considered an additional keypad like the Logitech G13? I started with a Belkin Nostromo, and moved to the Razer n52t when they bought the line from Belkin and now have the G13. I've set up several layouts, not just for gaming, but also for Visual Studio (particularly debugging), Photoshop & GIMP, and other productivity tools. Since the software senses the currently active application, it will shift profiles on the fly and can really increase efficiency. I would guess it might help out a lot with video editing apps as well. And yes, it has fully configurable backlighting.
  • Hitting shortcut keys is definitely harder to get used to than typing code/words without looking, I'll agree on that for sure
  • This also vastly depends on whether or not you type in more than one language. I type in 4 or more different languages on a daily basis, and the keyboard layouts are very different between them. It's impossible for me to get into my motor memory where everything is located. For example "@" uses three different combinations of key presses in three of the four languages I normally type, and that's just the start. #, $, %, €, ?, _, -, +, =, all the various types of brackets, *, /, \, ", ', ´, &, ~, ;, :, and more are either located in different places or require a different combination of keys, and some characters only exist in some language configurations, necessitating a language change. And, this is only symbols -- the alphabet also moves around with different languages. I know that where the American ":" is located, the Swedish "Ö" is located, whereas in Portuguese, that button is "ç", and in Russian, this is "ж". And in German, "Y" and "Z" are swapped. I know visually where on the keyboard letters are located, but the ten-finger tactics doesn't work with so many shifts and extended alphabets and characters. I could go on and on; the point is, backlighting can absolutely be a necessity. So the "I guess I learned to type a long time ago" belongs to the clichés of yore, in my book.
  • I am the same and tend to touch type anyway these days. Plus my triple monitor setup do a good job of lighting up the keyboard enough to see it fairly comfortably. Having the three screens is great for coding, I don't think I could be as productive with less than two
  • Features do state backlight +,- keys. ?
  • Agree on all points. I pre-ordered, but I'm going up to my MSFT store next weekend in hopes they'll have one on display that I can demo.
  • Totally agree. I use previous Sculpt keyboard and really like to type text on it, but layout of Ins/Del, Home/End and Pg UP/Down is killing me.
    New layout is much better, helps to solve this problem but I don't like how they put keys blocks without some gap between them. BT4 instead of radio module is nice addition.
    It is interesting if they release new version of mouse (like in Sculpt set) with BT or will have only flat one(shown on stage) since old confuses all? :)
  • Agree! Same for me. The letters are just stickers that are quickly worn out. On both my last two MS ergonomic keyboards the M key was illegible after only two months. More keys quickly followed. This is my #1 issue with this product that I otherwise love, but reason enough to look for something more durable.
  • But $ 130... Where does that go to?
  • Some of it is that material for sure, but yeah, not a cheap accessory. Gaming keyboards are also expensive. I dunno, if you type a lot, you just drop what you can on it as it's the #1 thing you'll be interacting with all day.
  • True. Still, I had a Microsoft Natural Keyboard Elite that lasted me 14 year until an accident with water killed it. I would love to get that one again.
  • I'm typing on one right now. The only thing I don't like about it is the shrunken arrow keys and the weird placement of home/end/pgup/pgdn/etc. Looks like this new model fixes that.  I guess I should try to get my employer to upgrade me.
  • How do you feel about the loss of the inverted tilt? It's a big downside for me, so I may buy another Sclupt Ergonomic whilst I can as my current one has taken a beating over the years as I'm typing code on it pretty much 6-7 days a week
  • Not a deal breaker.
  • When you do your review, please take a close look at how the keys are labeled (sticker, etched, laser). I've had multiple ergonomic keyboard 4000s, where many keys became illegible after only two months because the sticker wore off.
  • I can confirm the same issue on my Ergonomic 4000, but I've had the sculpt ergonomic for over 2.5 years now and none of the keys have faded after 6-7 days a week of coding most weeks
  • If you type a lot and have $100+ to drop on a keyboard, you go mechanical.
  • Not if you are in a cubicle with others. It can be a bit inconsiderate with all the clickity clackity. Now GET OFF MY LAWN!
  • I've got a mechanical keyboard as well as the Sculpt Ergonomic and on the mechanical I sometimes get wrist strain during long coding sessions. The Sculpt Ergonomic isn't as harsh on the fingers as traditional membrane keyboards, it sits in between in terms of finger impact. The comfort aspect is what makes me prefer the sculpt ergonomic, I've always thought this was mainly down to the inverted tilt it offers but sadly that has been removed in the Surface version. I'll try one out before making my mind up but it feels like there's been a few trade offs in the Surface version which feels a little form over function
  • If noise is a concern, you pick one with quieter switches (e.g. Cherry MX Reds or Browns), or add O-rings to dampen the sound. I've done the latter with my mechanical that has MX Blues, and have never had complaints in the office. It's a bit of a misconception that mechanical keyboards are inherently noisy. Acoustic feedback is just one aspect, but mechanicals also provide superior key travel, tactile feedback, long-term durability, etc. Plus, for those who dislike chiclet keys (which seem to be all the rage these days on consumer-grade gear), mechanicals still use traditional keycaps almost exclusively.
  • Well, considering the sculpt ergo desktop use to cost $130 a few months ago (can't remember the cost when it first came out), I think it's the alcantara leather.
  • Yeah, but you can buy the mouse and keyboard (Sculpt, ergo) for like $80 now. This doesn't even come with a mouse.
  • Yeah I know. Which makes it difficult because as someone else mentioned, the placement of the INS/DEL keys and separate num pad makes me question if the price difference is really worth it...and right now, its a tough call.
  • In the UK it's £63 for the desktop set and about £62 for the keyboard alone - I think I'm going to pick up another Sculpt Ergonomic for now with the loss of a few ergo focussed features missing in the new one. It looks really nice and I think the keys will be nicer, but it doesn't look as good for avoid wrist strain due to the angle it sits at (No inverted tilt) I'll definitely give one a go though when I get a chance
  • Just to be clear, Alcantara is not real leather, it's a synthetic. It averages about $100 a linear yard (fabric comes in 54" widths) so it's not really that expensive, and especially not for the small amount that would be used in a keyboard (I know this because I restore classic cars as a hobby and do my own upholstery work). I'm guessing there's a decent profit built into this keyboard.
  • What they have yet failed to justify is the price tag. Apart from the use of "Alcantara" (which I'm pretty sure everyone could live without), I see nothing to justify the price tag, specially considering it's not even backlit. I think this is clearly aimed at those people - normally Mac users - who value form over function and looks over utility. I'm sure it's a nice keyboard and all of that (and if it uses the same keys as the Surface type covers, the typing experience is certainly good) but it's not 130€ nice. It will certainly find some buyers. I'm just not going to be one of them.
  • Yeah, because it doesn't say Nokia. /s
  • No because there's nothing to justify it. It you want to be funny you need to try easy harder and then realise it's a gift you don't have.
  • *way harder
  • A keyboard is form and function, being it is something you interact with directly with your hands. Because you can't justify the price, doesn't mean that I can't. I have used the Sculpt keyboard ($100) for a while, and this adds features that can boost the price. Alcantara is an expensive material, usually it is an add-on package to luxury cars that costs hundreds or thousands. This includes bluetooth rather than IR, which makes it much better. It has the numberpad built in rather than a side device. A backlight, encryption to keep what you type private, and much more. Just because you do not want to pay this price doesn't mean that they should adjust the price. There are costs associated with creating this device, and you to arbitrarily decide the price. You don't want to buy at this price, more power to you. But I will. My Microsoft keybards have lasted many years, longer than keyboards from othe rmanufacturers. And $129 (I will actually pay less, ha-ha) amortized over a number of years makes it a good price.
  • IR ? The sculpt uses RF not IR.
  • Yes, RF not IR.
  • You make a bunch of claims that have no ground on the reality of what we know about this device. Backlit keys aren't present and neither is "encryption" in the keyboard. And again, it's not you who has to come up with excuses for the price, it's Microsoft. They're the ones selling it, not you. I guess you failed to understand that. And again, there are tons of keyboards that offer more than this one for less. So yes, I won't pay 130€ for this keyboard without very very good reasons to do it.
    Microsoft has yet to present them. And Alcantara by itself doesn't justify it except for people who prefer looks over utility.
    I also don't recall anyone on Earth saying "I rather have a keyboard with fabric than back-lit keys. Just like I never saw anyone at Bentley saying "I rather go with the Alcantara roof than with these better tires".
  • Maybe it will come with a chill pill to help some people lighten up.
  • This! Only, said people won't be buying it...
  • I think the only people needing a chill pill are the pathetic MS fanboys around here who can't accept the fact that not everyone is an idiot like them who blindly buy anything without questioning its value first.
  • The says it has backlighting, encryption, etc. I trust them over you. As for people choosing alcantara over tires on a Bentley, if you think that then you don't know people who would buy a Bentley.
  • What the store says is: "Encryption features: 128bit AES" - which has been a part of wireless keyboards for quite a while. It has nothing special or new. It's still the same standard encryption.   #Hot key features: Settings, Backlight+, Backlight-" Backlight+ and backlight- does NOT mean the keyboard itself is backlit. It can indicate that it has light controls.   As for "I don't know people who would buy a Bentley"...uh...I'm pretty sure I know myself, thanks. When I bought my Continental GT V8 two years ago, I can assure you that the cloth for the ceiling was the least of my concerns and even when I picked that, Alcantara was never even considered (as it looks horrible, but that's a matter of taste). At any rate, again, no one I know has ever put a fabric over more important things. Neither in cars and certainly not when it comes to keyboards.
  • Yeah that fiber is expensive. 36"x59" is $145
  • You can find it cheaper than that, and a manufacturer would definitely pay less than that. Also, consider how many keyboards you could get out of a yard of that material. The cost is really nominal.
  • Genuine question from another Sculpt Ergonomic owner/fan....Are you concerned that it's lost the inverted tilt? It was a major ergonomic plus of the previous models The keypad added on it also a negative from an ergonomics point, but maybe a positive for people who use it heavily....I'm thinking from a strictly ergonomics aspect, as I say the keypad being on there could be a positive for some people
  • Without actually trying it (I have no way to right now) I would tell people to try it out before dropping that much money on it - The previous model (from experience) is extremely good for ergonomics, and I do feel this has gone a bit more form over function because it's tossed out two of the things the previous model did very well from an ergonomics point....No inverted tilt and they re-added the keypad (Which moves the mouse further out, the point of a separate one is to not have to extend the shoulder/arm when switching to mouse)
  • I'm sure this keyboard will be fantastic. I've been using their Ergo Natural keyboards for such a long time (90s).  The wireless Sculpt is a great keyboard. I actually like having the option to position the numeric keypad where I please. I go about six to nine months on a single charge of batteries (and I work from home and play MMORPGs).  It works just fine.  I use mine so much that the keys are worn in many spots.  A replacement keyboard might be in order and it seems the Surface line might compliment the metalic grey of my Aurora, to boot.  Fantastic.
  • I've used an ergonomic for 15 years and avoid flat keyboards like the plague, but I much prefer the separate numbers keypad. If only they'd add a backlighting.
  • The thing is, as beautiful as this looks, grey keys with white labels can sometimes be difficult to read especially in low lightning. I mean, we are talking here about being as ergonomic as possible...
  • They should have added a headphone jack to poke fun at apple hehe.
  • This^
    That would've have been epic! lol
  • Are you absolutely positive this IS NOT backlit?  The reason I ask, I've been searching forever for a backlit keyboard and hadn't found one. I contacted Microsoft and the person I was chatting with indicated that BOTH of these new keyboards are backlit. Furthermore, on the Microsoft website it states: "Hot key features: Settings, Backlight+, Backlight-, Search, Task View, "  Unless that's a typo or I'm misunderstanding I can't imagine it not having backlighting. But then again why didn't this video demonstrate that?  I'm thinking about getting the smaller one.
  • Pretty sure that's in error. The current Sculpt Ergo is not backlit and being that it runs on regular batteries, I can't see it being backlit. We'll find out soon enough.
  • ok, that's a bummer I was hoping to finally get a backlit wireless keyboard.
  • Try the logitech K800, it isn't Bluetooth though it is wireless and backlit w/ rechargeable battery.
  • It isn't. Played with a demo at NYC MS store yesterday. Feels quality, better than my current ergonomic kb.
  • The backlight buttons could mean it controls the Surface screen brightness? The Logitech K800 is wireless and backlit....It's battery life is horrible compared to the Sculpt Ergo and the claimed battery life of the Surface Ergonomic. I definitely think that's what they opted to not backlight it. The K800 has a neat feature where it turns off the backlight as soon as you move your hands away, and back on when they approach but it's battery life is something horribly short (However it does use a built in rechargeable battery to help with costs but still....plugging in every 10 days or whatever it is aint good)
  • I wonder if that's just brighness up/down for the screen. I've owned a Logitech Illuminated Wireless keyboard and I had to recharge it weekly.
  • K800 states 10 hours, so I deffo think they opted for no backlight due to battery life.
  • I've been using ergonomic keyboards since Microsoft released the very first ones.  At the time, I was fighting carpel tunnel syndrom, and all of the symptoms completely disappeared as a result.  None of the models were ever backlit ( that I remember ) but I'm a touch typer so once I connect with the two primary keys, its all fine no matter how dark the room.  I have the current sculpt and would prefer the attached keypad.  As for the price ... well I have some older models that still work fine, so I suppose we are paying for quality of construction.  Having it be bluetooth, no dongle required, is a huge improvement. 
  • I am going to buy another Sculpt Ergo for at home, and when my one at the office dies I'll consider a Surface Ergonomic I think - I don't like the loss of inverted tilt on the Surface model so probably won't buy until the Sculpt Ergonomic can't be bought
  • I ordered as soon as I saw it.  The attached number pad is a must for me.  I have the Sculp but could not stand it due to the detached keyboard.  As for price, check out ergonomic keyboards.   There is a poor selection and they can get crazy expensive.  It's a free market, charge what people will pay.  After the initial demand they will drop the price some and catch the next tier of buyers.
  • Microhard :)
  • I'm a bit conflicted on the numpad being built in.  Ergonomically speaking it's actually preferably to have it separate so that the keyboard is smaller and your mouse area is closer in (to keep you arm straighter when transitioning between). Since I use mice on both sides to keep the RSI away the size of the keyboard matters even more.  But I also like using the numpad farily often and having it separate never seemed quite ideal to me. 
  • I could live with the attach numpad, even if I'd rather it was separate like the current Sculpt - I'm finding it harder to get over the lack of inverted tilt....It just looks like it sits too flat on the desk to be as good as the Sculpt Ergo in terms of comfort and protection....The raised front also lifts my MS band away from the desk nicely haha
  • I have one of these... At work...when I started I told them I wanted a new keybaord and they ordered me one.... I've been using for the Ergonomic Keyboard for years...I have had about 10 Microsoft keyboards over the years... Think this was the first one I owned... I still have it
  • Are you mother freaking kidding me, 129$ for a Ergonomic Keyboard! 
    Who does microsoft think they are, Apple!  LOL. Its only an Ergonomic keyboard! What! What!
  • LOL! Apple wouldn't be caught dead designing something with ergonomics in mind... 
  • I'm pretty sure this is sarcasm? If not, MS are quite well know for producing very good, and reasonably priced Ergonomic keyboards compared to what else is out there. The new one is a bit of step back from an ergonomics point of view, but I don't think the price is that bad....Saying that I'd go for the full Sculpt Ergonomic desktop for half the price unless you really need Bluetooth
  • For twice the price of the bigger keyboard I have with more functionality? Maybe if it were half the price, but I still don't like ergonomic keyboards. All of this new MS stuff seems priced like it is meant for diehards who only want MS products, so they know they can charge whatever. How about bringing back the Sidewinder X4? One of my favorite keyboards ever.
  • Surface pro 5 keyboard need to shape like this. For the middle hump, I has to be inflated by blowing on it with ur mouth everytime u use it
  • I hope that flat mouse in the photo on the store site isn't the new version of the ergonomic mouse. I have the old set and it's amazing. The mouse is the perfect shape for no wrist/hand pain. It would be a shame if they go back to an awful flat mouse. I'm due for a new set, so I hope it's out soon and in the proper format.
  • The mouse you're looking at is the Surface Mouse that replaces the Microsoft Designer mouse. I think the only big difference is the Surface one has a metal (more premium) scroll wheel, the one on the original MS Designer mouse is probably plastic. The new one is also grey instead of black
  • Indeed. They are divisive. They divide your right hand from your left on the keyboard... And I'd not have it any other way. Highly recommended.
  •   the only ergo keyboard you will never need.  major keys are relocated to ensure you type comfortably all day long. been using one since 2007.  sturdy as all get-out.  wincentral should do a story on it.    
  • Ordered. Replacing the one with the detached number pad.
  • I love the fingerprint reader on this! Oh wait. Windows. Hello? Why on earth did they not include this.
  • They also confirmed the normal Surface keyboard (non-ergo) will not have a fingerprint option....It was announced in error :(
  • No backlight no buy.
  • A shame it isn't backlit. I do a lot of editing at night (I'm pretty nocturnal lol) so it would have been really handy to have backlighting. I wonder why they never added it?
  • If you really need the backlighting at night then you don't have enough monitors ;)
  • Good point, haha
  • Actually I have three monitors and since passing forty I still need the backlit keyboard. :-)  
  • Why didn't they put a lcd strip on it instead of the function keys he he
  • I guess they didn't want to copy the Lenovo X1 carbon adaptive keyboard... who actually copied it from Microsoft Research who were messing with this stuff in 2010. Oh wait, I guess Apple went back in time and invented it 7 years ago.
  • Their speciality is "reinventing" isn't it. I was thinking that if Trump looses next week the Apple board should try to get him as their next CEO to "Make Apple Fabulous Again"
  • I can't use most split keyboards because they put the "6" key on the left side. When I learned typing a million years ago, you hit the "6" key with your right index finger. Apparently that changed at some point, but I can't update my finger's firmware.
  • In my case, it's the 'B'. For some reason, maybe I wasn't paying attention in typing class decades ago, but I always hit the 'B' key with my right index, although it 'officially' belongs to the left index. I also can't update my finger's firmware, I think it was flashed with a write once EPROM lol!
  • I've never really "learnt" typing in a traditional sense, but I can quickly adjust to typing on pretty much any keyboard without looking at it - An advantage to not being "classically trained" and just typing a hell of a lot? lol
  • Same here - I can type faster than anyone I know, but I just put my hands anywhere and touch-type from there. I also never use the ring-fingers on either hand (only thumb, index, middle, little). I have tried to learn the "proper way" but it always slowed me down, so I just went back to how I always did it
  • I don't understand how a keyboar with Qwerty/Azerty layout could be called "ergonomic"... The worth is there is still the unalign keys (vertically) from typewritters and this numberpab on the far right that pulls the mouse even further so your shoulder is not at rest. It's like everything in computer usage have been standardise to twist your skeleton in the wrong way. [Or damage your eyes with all this white everywhere and no system really effecient to adjust lightning. It works on laptops but on desktops, the screen enlighten you so the sensor think the lightning environment is high and increase the screen backlit, and same goes again. I've notice it on multiple screen with this option.] To go back to the subject, manufacturer should sell keyboard with dvorak/bépo or better layout with keys align vertically. Even better, with numpad and arrow keys at the center, between the two part dedicated to left and right hand so the arms and soulder could rest in a neutral position, at 90° from the edge of the desk. Otherwise, the design is nice and I like the felling of the fingers on Signature Surface Type Cover. That's the reason why it's a premium device at 130$ and not a cheap one at 40$. Premium is expensive but it worth it... If you can afford it! But I agree for the price it must be perfect technically before adding value like this. To those that wants backlighting  on the keyboard, I must warn you ; your environment might be too dim. I hop your screen is set at the minimun otherwise don't be surprise when you start to have headache with eye fatigue and finally your eyesight start decreasing before it naturally would. Just saying.
  • You can always get those keyboards if you care about them. This is too expensive for regular membrane switches anyway, although the arched shape IS very comfortable on the wrists.
  • I kind of consider these a membrane hybrid (anything with the scissor switches) lol, even if I'm not technically right heh. I think they have more impact on your fingers than Mechanical keys, but less impact than "traditional" membrane keyboards
  • I lurve, lurve, lurve the MS ergo keyboards. Had one since the 1st original, now on my 4th. This one looks lovely. If only I could justify the Surface Studio to go with it.
  • Can I program one of the spacebars to be a different fucntion? Like Win or Enter?
  • I guess over time the wrists would mark the alcantara?
  • They should sell QWERTY keyboards worldwide, and not only the local country-localized :-/
  • There's always eBay...
  • Curious if anyone has significant experience with both an ergonomic keyboard and a mechanical keyboard to give a comparison report. Between the two, which do you prefer? I currently use mechanical with my desktop (obviously not on my laptop) and don't think I'd want to change, especially with the multi-colored backlighting and macro keys -- I especially like one ouch to paste in Office Apps to: press Ctrl-V, Ctrl-T, T, Esc (which does a Paste as plain text). However, for people who have used both enough to get comfortable with them, do you find you have a strong preference for one over the other?
  • Mechanical I get less impact on my fingers, but with the MS Sculpt Ergonomic I get much less wrist pain/strain. The impact from the Sculpt Ergo isn't as bad as cheaper membrane keyboards, but more than what you feel on a mech set of keys. Hope that makes sense
  • I've been using Microsoft's ergonomic keyboards since the very first Natural keyboard came out in the late '90s. Since that time I've had the split keyboards at home and work continuously and really dislike going back to the standard straight keyboards. Between my wife and I we own four of the Scult Ergonomic keyboard and mouse sets (one each for home and work). As a developer / solutions architect, I've used the one I have at work for 8-10 hours a day for the last year without a single issue. All told, we haven't had a single issue with any of the four sets we own. I love the new look and the fact that the keypad is no longer a separate item on my desk. It was a novel concept to have it separated, but I found that I use it too often to set it aside for any length of time. The new model definitely has an upscale look and I'm asusming the feel of the "leather" will be better than the rubberized palm rest on the current Sculpt. I'll have to check these out once they show up at my local Microsoft store.
  • The keypad being separate was really from an Ergonomic perspective more than a unique idea tbh - Some sites that focus on Ergonomic keyboards don't even consider a keyboard truly ergonomic without it being detachable.....That's from an ergonomics perspective, obviously personal preference can trump that as the main thing is that you enjoy using it and find it comfy
  • I use the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000. I chose this one over other ergonomic style keyboards because it is one of the rare keyboards that have parenthesis and equal sign keys above the included numeric keypad that also dont require shift keys. The price difference between the 4000 and this seems a bit much.
  • I have the 4000 but don't use it anymore. The parenthesis keys were nice at times and felt directed at myself and other devs hehe
  • If it was backlit, I would be sold.
  • I am intrigued by 1 handed keyboards. I wish those were more mainstream.
  • love ergo keyboard, i still have and use the microsoft ps2 ergo i bought around 2000 for a college business course that made us make a transaction on ebay, i bought it for like $20. they are great for typing but maybe people don't know they are great for gaming too because the alt and ctrl keys are humungous and easy to reach "naturally" making them a legitimate bind for shooters and the like which they normally wouldn't be on a standard keyboard (pinky and thumb).
    this new keyboard looks badass and i would love to have it but i would never pay over $50 for any keyboard and wireless is actually more of an inconvenience for me than a wired keyboard since my pc never moves and it's mainly used for gaming.
    i was actually looking on microsoft store the other day to see if they had an updated replacement since mine is just starting to look crappy and the closest they have is the ms ergonomic kb 4000 for business which looks like a pile of poops that has a lot of unnecessary ugly looking gadgets on it.
  • I was really looking forward to it, but I just don't like the colour scheme so much. There's no contrast to it. The main thing they seem to forget when designing all their Surface accessories is that while the body of the Surfaces are all silver coloured - when you're using the device you see the screen, which is surrounded by a black bezel, not a grey one. The keyboard itself will be great - and if my current Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop this will probably be my next, but until then I think it needs some visual refinement. Speaking of the Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop, I'm upset there's no updated ergonomic mouse to go with the keyboard, that's a missed opportunity to update a wonderful product.
  • Hopefully they will continue to sell the Sculpt Ergonomic alongside it :) I get what you mean about the colours, when I first saw the leaked images of the new surface accessories I thought they were purposely plain looking as they weren't final retail models. Still think they look nice but generally agree with your observations on the design for sure.
  • It's not backlit?  Why does it have keys for adjusting the baclight if it doesn't have that feature?
  • Device screen brightness?