Updated November 11, 2020 by Brett Dvoretz

The 10 Best Foldable Keyboards

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This wiki has been updated 23 times since it was first published in September of 2015. For when a touchscreen keypad is just not fast enough, or when you want to travel light yet still have the ability to work efficiently, you'll want to keep one of these compact, foldable keyboards in your equipment bag. They allow you to use all your portable devices more effectively, including smartphones and tablets. Most connect via Bluetooth and some can be used in wired mode as well. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. Skip to the best foldable keyboard on Amazon.

10. Sungwoo Rollup

9. Jelly Comb Pocket

8. Goldtouch Go!2

7. iClever BK08

6. MoKo Wireless

5. Geyes 608

4. Joyzy Universal

3. iClever BK03

2. Geyes 228S

1. iClever BK05

Special Honors

WayTools TextBlade The WayTools TextBlade is an interesting piece of equipment that utilizes magnets to hold it together when used for typing, and, when not in use, it disassembles into three slim pieces that stick to each other. It is said to offer a quite pleasant typing experience, though you probably wouldn't want to use it to write a multi-page report. waytools.com

Editor's Notes

November 09, 2020:

Tablets are great for viewing media and surfing the web, but if you want to do any kind of meaningful work that involves a lot of typing on one, it is important to get a physical keyboard. And, since most people take their tablets on the go, we think a foldable keyboard like those on this list is probably your best option.

When considering foldable keyboards, the first thing to understand is that compromises must be made. There is no way around this. If you want something super compact when folded, such as the Geyes 608, you'll have to deal with a few concessions, such as the undersized enter key on this one. Alternatively, options like the Geyes 228S and Goldtouch Go!2 have an almost full-sized layout, but aren't as compact when folded up.

Tri-fold models like the iClever BK05 and iClever BK03 seem to offer the best balance between these properties, though we will admit they are less ergonomic than the MoKo Wireless, which offers a split keypad for more comfortable hand spacing, and the Goldtouch Go!2, which can be adjusted through various vertical and horizontal angles to reduce strain on the wrists.

If you can't make do without a touchpad, but don't want to buy a separate one, you'll need to look to either the iClever BK08 or Jelly Comb Pocket. We like the former better because of its ability to connect to three device simultaneously and switch between them at the touch of a button, and because it has physical mouse buttons. While these can both work with iOS devices, their trackpads won't, so you should keep that in mind.

November 19, 2019:

As powerful as smartphones and tablets are these days, it's completely reasonable to want to do a lot of work on them. To do so efficiently, you'll need a good keyboard. One major player in low-cost peripherals, iClever, has a few models worth checking out. The iClever BK05 checks quite a few boxes and is one of the few we found with a built-in backlight, making it perfect for getting work done when everybody else is asleep. The iClever BK03 is just a bit simpler and less expensive, while the iClever BK08 incorporates a touch pad, as long as you aren't using an Apple device.

The Geyes 608 is particularly useful if you're using it with a smartphone, though its kickstand isn't sufficient for larger tablets. For those cases, check out the Geyes 228S, which comes with a tablet stand that accommodate most, but not all devices. For sheer typing pleasure, the MoKo Wireless is hard to beat; it's also one of the quietest and most well-made overall, but some find that its key placement takes some getting used to. And then there's the Desk Sushi R1, which is especially durable when not in use and has two built-in speakers and a microphone, all of which sound much better than you might expect from such a lightweight and reasonably priced device.

Always On The Move

Foldable keyboards are designed for additional portability and convenience so you can easily take one along when traveling.

A computer keyboard is derived from the style of the original typewriters and connects to your computer so you can perform desired functions. Many keyboards can now be purchased as separate devices that connect independently to your laptop, tablet, or other mobile device for increased convenience. Some of these keyboards connect wirelessly using a USB port or Bluetooth connection. Foldable keyboards are designed for additional portability and convenience so you can easily take one along when traveling.

You can also get a foldable keyboard as a backup in case there is a glitch with your laptop while you are away from home, but most people purchase one to use with their tablets or smartphones. It makes working away from home much more convenient than usual and can be slipped into any carry on case for your next flight. They are especially useful when you know you are going to find yourself somewhere that taking your laptop along would be inconvenient.

Keep in mind that foldable keyboards are designed for convenience, not for ergonomics. While they can be used from nearly anywhere, they are not intended for extended, continuous use. There are very few fancy features that will help reduce your risk of carpal tunnel, so it is probably best to use one of these when you have a quick project to complete on your mobile device that requires more involvement than tapping on your phone screen.

Make sure you determine whether you prefer a USB or Bluetooth-enabled keyboard. If you plan to use it with your laptop, USB is likely fine, but if you plan to use it frequently with your tablet or other mobile device, you will need to go with the Bluetooth connection.

Check out the available function keys on any model you are considering. Think about what you plan to use it for and how many functions you will need to perform. Some come complete with full keyboard functionality while others only come equipped with the basics.

You can even consider some additional features such as LED back lights for increased convenience and visibility, durable aluminum casing, and automatic shutoff for battery preservation. Tactile feedback, latency, and charge speed can all be deciding factors as well. If you are going to be using it a lot, you will want as much comfort, speed, and responsiveness as possible.

To Fold Or Not To Fold?

There are several advantages and disadvantages to opting for a foldable keyboard. If you are a frequent traveler, the advantages of a foldable keyboard are likely to far outweigh any disadvantages you might encounter. And because they are affordable, they can be replaced when necessary with very little effort.

There are several advantages and disadvantages to opting for a foldable keyboard.

The first and most obvious advantage is portability. These keyboards are extremely compact and lightweight to take along anywhere you plan to go. You don’t have to worry about accidentally punching buttons, since the keys are protected when folded, and some of them are even resistant to liquids, so if you drop a drink in your bag by mistake, you might still be protected.

On most foldable keyboards, you are going to encounter half-dome keys. These keys look like your average laptop keys but function like desktop keys. They are responsive and don’t require a hard press to register.

Unfortunately, foldable keyboards tend to wear out or break quicker than standard desktop keyboards. This isn't a result of insufficient build quality and components, but rather a result of constantly being jostled about when on the move and regulalry folded and unfolded. Their navigation can sometimes be difficult, as well. Often the keys are not in the exact same spot as you have become accustomed.

A Brief History of the Foldable Keyboard

The predecessor to the computer keyboard was the original typewriter. The QWERTY typewriter keyboard was invented by Christopher Latham Sholes in the nineteenth century. He filed the patent for his typewriter in 1868, but the first models weren't available to the public until 1877 and were made by the Remington Company.

He filed the patent for his typewriter in 1868, but the first models weren't available to the public until 1877 and were made by the Remington Company.

Charles Krum, an American mechanical engineer, developed the teleprinter at the beginning of the twentieth century. Herman Hollerith created a keypunch device that was very similar to the typewriter in the 1930s. The keyboards created to be used with early computers required a lot of intermittent steps in order to transmit the data between the keyboard and the computer itself. This meant that things ran quite slowly.

Fortunately, technology advanced over time, and computer keyboards were developed that were capable of sending direct electronic impulses for a faster response time and more accurate typing. Modern computer keyboards are still based on Sholes’ QWERTY layout, but they do have a few additional keys, such as function keys and sometimes a numeric keypad.

In 2005, Ghia-Hung Liu filed a patent for a foldable keyboard intended specifically for use with portable devices. The foldable keyboard was designed with convenience in mind and has since evolved into a Bluetooth-enabled device for use with smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices.

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Brett Dvoretz
Last updated on November 11, 2020 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as in front of a laptop screen, Brett can either be found hacking away furiously at the keyboard or, perhaps, enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He has been a professional chef, a dog trainer, and a travel correspondent for a well-known Southeast Asian guidebook. He also holds a business degree and has spent more time than he cares to admit in boring office jobs. He has an odd obsession for playing with the latest gadgets and working on motorcycles and old Jeeps. His expertise, honed over years of experience, is in the areas of computers, electronics, travel gear, pet products, and kitchen, office and automotive equipment.

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