Some people like to have as many features as humanly possible. If there's room for another button or dial, they want to have it in there. Other people prefer to keep things as clean as possible and that's the market that is being targeted by the Microsoft Bluetooth Mobile Keyboard 6000. It boasts a compact size, a relatively simple design, super clean lines and it even comes with a number pad. Let's take a closer look!
Features and Highlights
Described as a "cool combo" on the official product page, the Bluetooth Mobile Keyboard 6000 is actually comprised of two parts. You get the main comfort curve keyboard and then there is a separate number pad for all your spreadsheet-creating needs. Both of these, as the name of the product implies, communicate with your computer via a wireless Bluetooth connection. Many notebooks, netbooks, and desktops come equipped with integrated Bluetooth these days, so that means that you can enjoy wireless freedom without dealing with a dongle. This is quite different from something like the Microsoft Wireless Desktop 3000, since that requires a dedicated USB transceiver.
Since this is meant to be a portable solution, it's very nice to see that Microsoft has implemented an ultra-thin design for both the keyboard and the numeric keypad. This will make them easier to stash in your laptop backpack or messenger bag when you decide to hit the road. The keypad may be available separately in the future since notebooks seem to be getting smaller and number pads are becoming increasingly rare on more portable laptops.
Both components also come with an on/off switch and a battery status indicator. There is no battery meter, however, so you don't really know that you're running low on juice until you're almost completely out. Both components also cost $89.95 US as a pair which isn't such a bad deal considering that a certain "fruit" themed computer computer sells their small bluetooth keyboard for $69.99 US with no keypad and no ergnomic curve. This combo is backed up by Microsoft's 3 year warranty as well, further adding some value to the deal. It's also both Windows (including the latest "7") and Mac OSX compatible.
Included Inside the Box
Opening the box, you'll find almost everything that you need to get started. If your computer already has integrated Bluetooth, as is the primary market for this particular unit, then you should have no trouble connecting wirelessly to the keyboard and numeric keypad. If you don't have Bluetooth, then you'll need to invest in a USB Bluetooth adapter.
Inside the box, you'll get the comfort curve keyboard, the separate numeric keypad, a carrying pouch for the numeric keypad (but not for the keyboard), basic documentation, and three AAA alkaline batteries. At some point, you'll probably want to swap out for some rechargeable batteries. The more you use it, the more batteries you'll need to replace and that's not so good for mother earth. You'll notice no software in the box as it runs off the drivers in the OS via a Bluetooth connection.
What you won't find inside is a wireless mouse. This is not meant to be a wireless desktop, per se, so you will need to provide a mouse of your own. All the frequent flyers in the audience probably already have a suitable notebook mouse in their bags, so this keyboard will help to complete the mobile package.