Projection keyboard arrives straight from your imagination, price also outworldly

Projection keyboard arrives straight from your imagination, price also outworldly
Smartphones already pack enough power to replace our notebook and desktop PCs for most of the basic tasks we do, but the small size of these handhelds doesn’t allow them to incorporate a full-fledged keyboard and that’s one key hurdle to achieving good productivity. Actually, smartphones with QWERTY keyboards are become very rare - at this CES and MWC we can’t recall a single high-end device to pack a physical keyboard.

To solve the dilemma of small size and productivity needs comes the Elecom TK-PBL042BK (whew, what a name!) projection keyboard. It looks like it’s straight out the future - a small rectangular block uses infrared to project a keyboard on any flat surface. Unfortunately, the futuristic projection keyboard comes with an outworldly price tag of $350 - more than some smartphones! This is also more than a similar product, Celluon's Magic Cube, that promises to project a keyboard and trackpad for $200 when it rolls out this Summer.

If you’re ready to swallow that bitter pill though, here’s what you get. The Elecom TK-PBLO42BK is very compact, with dimensions of 38.0 x 29.0 x 75.0 mm and weighing 2.7 ounces (77g) without the battery.

The length of a key matches that on a physical keyboard - it’s 0.75 iniches (19mm) and it registers up to 350 words per minute, a task even the fastest typer won’t be able to meet.

The projection also includes “mouse mode,” or more accurately “trackpad” mode where an area is projected for you to use as a trackpad.

The innovative keyboard works on both Android and iOS via Bluetooth, and supports USB connection for PCs.



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5 Comments

1. atheisticemetic

Posts: 377; Member since: Dec 18, 2011

thinkgeek had something like this a long time ago, however this is a cool idea. We'll just wait for the price to go down!

2. cepcamba

Posts: 717; Member since: Feb 27, 2012

Yeah. Once it hits below $100 it will sell hot :p I can see it more useful for tablets though, so you get to enjoy the full screen. When using your phone your most likely in a place where setting up the infrared keyboard on a flat surface is a hassle (e.g. in transit, outdoors, etc)

3. jmoita2

Posts: 930; Member since: Dec 23, 2011

Give it a year or so,and you will probably see it at Walmart for $100... And why haven't I heard Apple claiming it's their idea yet???

4. MobileCaseReview

Posts: 242; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

This is very old technology. I used to use it with my old pocket pc's back in the day. I'm kind of shocked they're making another run at it again. Kudo's if it's improved heavily and really improves the user experience on our larger screened more efficient smartphones of today.

5. -box-

Posts: 3991; Member since: Jan 04, 2012

Now they need a way to integrate this onto/into the smartphone or have it available as a dock of sorts... Separate devices are all well and good, but it's nice having everything all in one unit, hence the appeal of the smartphone in the first place

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