Mini keyboards are becoming really popular because they offer a great way to remote control computers. EFO has a line of mini keyboards and today we are looking at the EFO wired handheld keyboard.
- Plug and play: no need to install software.
- Compatible for Mac, Linux, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, etc
- No battery is required.
- Backlighting: Makes text entry effortless – even in low light.
- Light weight: Only with 60 g.
One of the key features of any mini keyboard is that it is easy to setup and use. The EFO Keyboard meets that requirement by only requiring a single USB plug and no software or drivers.
Because the EFO Keyboard does not need any software or drivers, it is compatible with most operating systems, it is even compatible with most gaming systems.
The backlight is nice for when the lights are out. Often when watching TV I turn off the lights and without the backlight I would have to turn the lights back on to see the buttons.
The fact that this is a wired keyboard eliminates the need for a battery, which means there is no need to wait for the battery to charge before it can be used.
Also because there isn’t a battery or wireless transmitter the keyboard is very light weight.
The front is where you find the keyboard, touchpad, and activity lights. There are 5 lights at the top of the EFO keyboard but only the 3rd and 5th actually do anything. They are for input and caps lock. The other three LEDs are only applicable for the wireless versions of the keyboard.
The touchpad is quite large when compared to other devices like this, but this gives you lots of room to move around in. Below the touchpad are two buttons which are the left and right mouse buttons.
Keyboard and Cable
The keyboard is very small, but it does has a standard QWERTY layout. The buttons are also slightly raised and that makes them easy to press, but they are also very smooth. Most of the buttons have dual functions, the second function is indicated with a small number or character above the regular one. However, not everything is perfect. Normally, the F and J keys have a raised spot so that you can orient your fingers without looking at the keyboard. This keyboard does not have these, and some of the auxiliary keys are not in their normal location, so looking at your fingers while typing is a necessity. The keyboard is also lacking multimedia keys. For use with an HTPC the multimedia keys would have been very helpful.
The keyboard has a backlight function, but it needs to be turned on and off manually. To turn on and off the backlight the RF key must be pressed.
The bottom has the USB port, and a power switch, but the power switch does not actually work on the wired version.
Because a cable is required for use, EFO included a USB cord that is 2M long. This give you a little wiggle room while using the keyboard.
So now it is time to hook it up to my computer and try it out.
Because there is no software to install, setting up the EFO keyboard is very easy, just plug it in.
Once it is plugged in, the computer will detect a new device and install any needed drivers. After that is done the only thing left to do is use it, and using the EFO keyboard is actually very easy.
As I stated above, the keys have a QWERTY layout, so it is easy to find the keys you are looking for. The buttons have a solid feel and give a solid click when pressed. I did not have any trouble getting it to work or using it.
The only big negative is having to be physically attached to my computer. Because of this I would rather just use my full size keyboard and mouse.
Warranty and Support
The EFO Keyboard comes with a 1 year warranty, and you get support through the EFO website.
The keyboard certainly does its job, and it does it without breaking the bank. The low price of $22 makes up for a lot of the missing features. However, if you can afford the more expensive wireless keyboard I would recommend that you get that one instead. Having to be physically attached to my computer is a real pain.
If your looking for a wireless mini keyboard and you are on a tight budget then the EFO keyboard is a great option.
|JusTech'n editors' rating|