One of the notable features of the iOS 4 update was the fact that it would let the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 connect to keyboards over Bluetooth. Well, we decided to give it a go the moment we upgraded our iPhone 3GS to iOS 4 and managed to get our hands on Apple’s Wireless Keyboard. Why Apple’s keyboard when we were told that the software upgrade would make the device work just as well with any other? Well, mainly because it had music function keys, which we thought would be cool to try out and of course, because we felt that it would work best, thanks to the Apple connection. That it looked cool as hell and was the lightest wireless keyboard in town might have also had something to do with it at some level.
The first thing to do, of course, was to turn on Bluetooth in both devices. This resulted in the iPhone detecting the wireless keyboard but not pairing with it. To initiate pairing, we just touched the wireless keyboard highlighted on the iPhone screen and were presented with a numeric code to punch in and enter on the wireless keyboard. We did so, and hey presto, we were connected. That was literally all there was to it.
When it comes to functions, the keyboard worked a charm. We were able to key in text in web page boxes, enter URLs and best of all, really do some heavy duty word-processing on the iPhone. Yep, everything from cut and paste to formatting worked just fine – we hardly ever needed to touch the screen. In music mode too, the keyboard was just dandy, allowing us to play/pause and move to the next and previous tracks without ever having to sully the phone with our mitts.
All of which makes the Godphone as close to a notebook as it will ever be. We really think that it is terrific for making blog posts and tweets on the move as well as other word processing tasks. Yes, the onscreen keyboard works too, but honestly, a full-fledged one works even better. And while the 3.5 inch screen ain’t a third as big as those we get on netbooks, it suits us just fine as long as we do not have to scroll too much. So if you are the type that has an iPhone 3GS or iPhone 4 running iOS 4 and does not feel too inclined to lug a netbook around all the time, we would say: go get a wireless keyboard. It will put you back by about Rs 3,500 if you go for the Apple one (which we do recommend), but it will really be money well spent as you will end up with a device that is very portable and with excellent battery life.
Oh, and our fearless prediction is that when the iPad does get iOS 4, wireless keyboards are going to be flying off the shelves.