Macally Quick Switch Bluetooth Keyboard for Up to Five Devices – Review

Quick Switch Bluetooth Keyboard for Up to Five Devices
Price: $70
Guest review by Ron Staub

Macally BT keyboard

I am a recent new owner of an iMac with a 21″ screen (replacing an old PC laptop). This Mac has its place on my desk next to my iPad, my printer, and in front of my 26″ television. I had a wired, full-sized keyboard for the Mac and a smaller, Bluetooth keyboard for the Pad, leaving very little room for mouse travel, note taking, and other desk tasks.

As far as I knew, there was no such thing as a keyboard (Bluetooth or otherwise) that would work on both the Mac and the iPad sitting next to each other. I was surprised and delighted when I was shown the BTKeyPro, and I was eager to try it.

Installation was pretty much as advertised (except for design of user guide; see below). Bluetooth pairing with both Mac and iPad was easy and quick. Since I occasionally have my iPhone in the vicinity and hate to type on it, I paired with that also. Switching between devices is simple and is greatly aided by LEDs that let you know which device is currently connected.

There is also a wired USB connection, for use with any Mac. While this did not actually work (the keyboard did not function with my iMac when the USB LED was lit) it did work in the sense that it powered through Bluetooth. With the USB connection, you can shut the keyboard on/off switch to off.

While I’m not much of an authority on keyboards, this Macally keyboard is fully functional and has a pleasant touch. It even has a forward Delete key that I haven’t seen too often.

The biggest problem was the User Guide. It is small (five inches square), with tiny print, having grey ink on glossy, cream-colored paper; a pain to read. Because it was so difficult to read, I missed several sections of explanation that contributed to my need to contact Macally tech support. My contact with Macally tech support by email and phone was very positive.

There are three LED lights on the top right keyboard deck that indicate the use of CAPS lock, Num Lock, and the “fn” key. I could not get the CAPS lock light to operate on the mobile devices at first, but they are now working fine. I could not get the Numbers lock light or the function light to work on any of the devices. It turns out that “fn” key and light use is explained in the Guide, but illegibly. For reasons not worth explaining the Num lock key and light only work on PCs.

Originally, the failure of the Mac to connect when the USB device key was used seemed to be a problem. But using the device-named key (which uses Bluetooth) works equally well, and USB still supplies the power for the keyboard, saving batteries.

Overall, I am delighted! The extra space obtained by one less keyboard on my desk, and the easy, seamless one-touch switching between devices, makes this keyboard a pleasure.

MyMac Review Rating is 8 out of 10. When Macally provides a larger User Guide printed in dark ink the score will be higher.

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