This featherweight Bluetooth wireless keyboard is a possible substitute to Apple’s dockable iPad keyboard, which you can happily utilize if you own an iPad and are looking for a keyboard with real substance.
Price at the time of our test
Any Bluetooth keyboard can work with iPads. However, this model has outcompeted Apple by producing an Apple-specific one which outmaneuvered Apple’s in size and weight.
The Voix Genie is a copy of the wireless keyboard which comes with the most recently released Macs. The single difference is that all of it is made from black plastic, meanwhile Apple’s has satin aluminium layout and white keys. Also, this product does not own a dock or rear bracket built in, only a wireless keyboard that does not physically support the tablet.
The order of the F keys is not the same in them, but this should not lead to any difficulties. To illustrate, on Apple’s version the square Home button is on the left of F1 position, and in Voix designers placed an “Esc” key in its place, and moved the original button to the right.
One similarity between Apple’s version and Voix Genie is that both products have specialized keys across the F-line at the top. However, these keys are primarily serving the same function as F-keys (from F1 to F12), which can be used by pressing on them at the same time with the blue ‘Fn’ key to your left at the bottom of the keyboard.
How do I use Voix Genie?
This model is also complementary with regular computers, as it pairs by Bluetooth (which is how it usually works in the majority of wireless keyboards). You just simply need to type in an ad-hoc PIN code to finish the starting process.
Below is a general summary of all the F keys and their uses. You will be unable to find these on a regular keyboard for Windows or Mac OS X.
- F1: makes the virtual screen keyboard appear on the screen
- F2: shows the iPad search screen
- F3: begins a slideshow of all the pictures in your storage library
- F4: turns off the screen
- F5: locks your screen
- F6+ F9: media control keys with a different order to Apple- stop, play/pause, rewind, forward
- F10+F12: volume, mute, up, down
The model which we used in our test was adapted for users in the United Kingdom- it had the British currency sign (pounds) on the key ‘3’. But it had the US-style single-height enter/ return key on the ‘A’ line. The keyboards in Britain typically have the return key as a double-height that spans A and Q lines.
To be perfectly honest with you, it is very easy to tell that the special modifier keys on both sides of the Voix Genie’s space bar were inspired by Apple’s computers. Right next to the space bar on both sides is (from left to right) ‘command’, ‘’alt’ (labeled both as ‘alt’ and ‘option’ just like with Apple’s keyboard on iPad), ‘control’ only on the left side.
Our team was not entirely impressed by the key action of this keyboard, as it does not have the precision and feedback, which we expected from QWERTY. Nevertheless, Voix Genie is more portable than the iPad keyboard. Voix Genie’s fixed dock support and the heavier platform is a physical layout, which is definitely more adapted to static desktop setups. Voix Genie is more portable and compact, as it is only 20mm in its thickness, and weighs 286g, while Apple’s is 592g. The battery in this model is also unified and rechargeable, which some Apple users may see as attractive, as they are probably sick of having to change the AA cells in their own Bluetooth keyboards.
However, the top leading keyboard among all the other models in the market for iPad may still be Apple’s (which comes with Macs), if you can manage to use it without the extra iOS custom keys.