The iPad pro is definitely one of the more powerful tablets out there. With it’s pen support, larger screen, and additional capabilities that come with that hardware, there could certainly be a temptation to use it as an ultra-lightweight laptop replacement. If you’re planning to do any sort of writing (text, code, whatever) I’m guessing the pen input is not what you want. For that, you want a keyboard. Well, how about a keyboard that makes the iPad Pro look almost like a MacBook, complete with trackpad? That’s what the Libra keyboard is offering up.
As you can tell from the photos, the Libra definitely knew what design it was paying homage to. I think it’s the inclusion of that trackpad that really sells the design. We’ve seen any number of bluetooth keyboards for tablets, and while they may get the job done, they can feel cramped, or just not look right. On the Libra, this is a design that looks good, and looks good along with the iPad Pro.
As I mentioned, the trackpad looks to be a key feature. That’s something that only recently became possible, with the release of iPad OS and it’s support for an external mouse. Obviously, the keyboard will cover the screen when it’s closed up, so that’s a nice bit of protection. What about the back of the tablet? The Libra also includes a snap-on magnetic cover, so your device will be fully enclosed. That’s on the 12.9” iPad Pro; for the smaller sizes, there are specific cases being offered in space grey, red, green, and blue.
Obviously, the Libra is going to use bluetooth to connect to your device. That, along with the backlight, means it needs a battery. In this case, it’s got a 4000 mAh one that is estimated to provide 200 days of life per charge (not bad, that). It also has an output port which means you could use it to charge up your phone – or the iPad – in a pinch.
The Libra is currently funding on Kickstarter, and has hit 1000% (not, that’s not an errant extra zero) of it’s goal with things wrapping up on November 8, 2019. If you want to jump in, pricing starts at $109 with delivery anticipated for January of 2020. campaign page
Tech Specs from Libra
- For iPad Pro 9.7”, 10.5”, 11”, and 12.9”
- Aluminum housing in space grey and silver
- 0-120 degree viewing angles
- Adjustable backlit keys (three levels of brightness in multiple colors)
- 4000 mAh battery
- Bluetooth connection
- Scissor-Switch keys (same as the last-generation MacBook)
- Dedicated function keys
- Trackpad with touch and gesture control