The 9 Best iPad Pro Keyboards of 2021

Alternatives for typing on-screen

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The Rundown
"This keyboard stretches side to side of the case giving you a great layout."
"If you have an iPad Pro and a number of other devices you want to connect to, the Logitech K380 might be a good investment for you."
"If you want to use your iPad Pro for some real content creation and keep it safe, look no further than the ZAGG Rugged Book Go."
Best Laptop Experience:
Apple Magic Keyboard at Amazon
"The latest iPad Pro introduced the latest Apple designed keyboard called the Magic Keyboard, and it's very nice."
"Brydge makes great keyboards. Full stop."
"Attaches to the back of the iPad Pro and folds around to the front for all-around protection."
Best for Apple Pencil:
ZAGG Slim Book Go at Amazon
"Coming in at a great price point is the ZAGG Slim Book Go."
Best Standalone Keyboard:
Apple Magic Keyboard 2 at Amazon
"Apple's Magic Keyboard 2 was designed to work with Macs, but it will also pair up nicely with your iPad Pro."
"One thing that really makes a keyboard stand out is RGB lighting. It really adds flair to the typing experience."

Finding the best iPad Pro Keyboard is a huge leap. It's a pretty awesome machine and consistently the best rated tablet on the market. But one thing often holds back the iPad from being the ultimate portable creation powerhouse. It lacks a physical keyboard. Fortunately, manufacturers have clued in on that fact and have made a slew of keyboards to choose from.

The right keyboard can take your mobile productivity to the next level. You want to have a great look and a great feel. You want something that's lightweight and doesn't get in the way of the iPad. Putting all that together can be tough. We have our best suggestions below.

Best Overall: Logitech Slim Folio Pro

Logitech Slim Folio PRO for iPad Pro 11-inch
What We Like
  • Backlit Keys

  • Apple Pencil holder

What We Don't Like
  • Sits flat

  • Keyboard not detachable

Logitech is one of the biggest names in computer peripherals. From mice to speakers to keyboards, Logitech covers them all. This keyboard stretches side to side of the case giving you a great layout. The keys are backlit meaning you can type in the dark which is awesome. The magnetic latch has an Apple Pencil holder which also positions the Pencil properly for charging. Your Pencil is always ready to go!

The keyboard isn't detachable, which can make using the iPad in more causal positions more difficult. Leaning back on the couch and taking in a movie or playing a game in portrait orientation gets more difficult when you have to hold the keyboard behind the tablet. One other noteworthy trait is that the keyboard lays flat on the table when in use. Depending on your preference this may or may not bother you. Most keyboards have some tilt to them for ease of use.

Best Budget: Logitech K380 Multi-Device Bluetooth Keyboard

What We Like
  • Connect to multiple devices

  • Low price

  • Two-year battery life

What We Don't Like
  • Key labels are trying to please everyone

  • Round keys may not be comfortable to use

  • Doesn't attach to the iPad

  • Non-rechargeable battery

If you have an iPad Pro and a number of other devices you want to connect to, the Logitech K380 might be a good investment for you. It won't be much of an investment because this keyboard is one of the least expensive items in this list at under $30. The round keys can take some getting used to and the pitch between keys is very small.  The battery is not rechargeable, but it will last you an estimated 2-years which is pretty awesome.

The Logitech K380 allows you to easily switch between up to three different devices, which gives you great consistency between devices. Use the same keyboard for your home PC and your iPad when you go mobile. But because of that, the labels on the keys are designed to accommodate iPad, Android, macOS, and Windows, which frankly can be confusing. For example, the Start button for windows is the Option key on a Mac and an Alt key on still another device. Also the keyboard is not attached to the iPad, so it's a second device you need to carry while you're on the go.

"Logitech has been making great keyboards for decades, and it really shows with this offering. It's great to type on and super portable." Adam Doud, Product Tester

Best Protection: ZAGG Rugged Book Go

ZAGG - Rugged Book Go Keyboard Folio
What We Like
  • Multi Device pairing

  • Rugged build with Pencil holder

  • Versatile case

What We Don't Like
  • Questionable Kickstand

  • Adds a lot of bulk

If you want to use your iPad Pro for some real content creation and keep it safe, look no further than the ZAGG Rugged Book Go. This is a case composed of a strong polycarbonate with padded corners. The keyboard covers the front of the iPad and kickstand folds down from the back of the case. The kickstand is not ideal for the rough surfaces a rugged keyboard case is likely to encounter. The large flat plane holding up the iPad can be set off balance by an unfortunately placed pebble on your table.

But the case is very versatile. The keyboard detaches and wirelessly connects to the keyboard via bluetooth so you can place your iPad back from your typing surface. Or you can use the keyboard attached and use magnetic attachments to tilt the keyboard. The case also also has a pencil holder so you can transport that accessory as well. Overall, this is a great option that's very versatile if you don't mind a little extra bulk.

Best Laptop Experience: Apple Magic Keyboard for iPad Air and iPad Pro

Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro
What We Like
  • Closest you'll get to a laptop experience

  • First-party hardware

  • Detachable

  • Trackpad

What We Don't Like
  • Keyboard sits flat

  • Expensive

The latest iPad Pro introduced the latest Apple designed keyboard called the Magic Keyboard, and it's very nice. The iPad attaches to the Magic Keyboard magnetically which means it's easily removable as well. The iPad floats over the keyboard, off the table so it's at a more comfortable eye level. Unfortunately, the keyboard itself sits flat which can be uncomfortable for typing.

All the same, things generally get better when a company designs an accessory for their own device, and that's definitely the case here. This is the closest thing to a laptop experience that you'll get with an iPad including a trackpad, but it comes at a cost. The Magic Keyboard can retail north of $200 at times, which may be a showstopper after forking out money for the iPad Pro itself. Definitely something to keep in mind. But overall, this is a great accessory that will turn your iPad pro into a productivity machine.

Best Design: Brydge Pro Keyboard

What We Like
  • Brydge makes great keyboards

  • Amazing pitch, key travel, and feel

What We Don't Like
  • Detachable, but not easily

  • Not portrait friendly

Brydge makes great keyboards. Full stop. That could be the entire description and we'd be all set. But there's more to talk about here. A Brydge keyboard attaches to your iPad with rubber coated clamp at the bottom of the iPad. It puts the iPad in landscape orientation, and that's pretty much where it stays. You can take the iPad off and using it in Portrait, but the rubber and clamp method of attachment is not the easiest, so it's not something you want to do often.

But the fundamentals here - the pitch and travel of the keys are great. The feel of the keys are also premium keyboard territory. When you're ready to put the ipad away, it closes up clamshell style which also protects the screen. The keyboard is solid feeling and feels like it could stand up to a good amount of abuse. Plus the battery lasts for months on a charge. This is one of our favorite keyboards, but if you often use your iPad in portrait because of games or Instagram, you might want to look elsewhere.

"Brydge is my go-to for tablet keyboards. They're so great; they're in the top three keyboards I've ever used. They're that good."Adam Doud

Best Lightweight: Apple Smart Keyboard Folio

What We Like
  • No charging required

  • Uses Apple's proprietary connector

What We Don't Like
  • Keyboard lays flat

  • Uninspired design

Apple didn't stop at the Magic Keyboard, because it's not for everyone. Slightly cheaper than that is the Keyboard Folio which attaches to the back of the iPad Pro and folds around to the front for all-around protection. The cover of the case carries the keyboard. Like others on this list, the keyboard sits flat, making it uncomfortable for typing. It has a flimsy looking, uninspired design.

This is one of the only cases on the list that uses Apple's connector pins to transfer data and keystrokes. Most others use Bluetooth or another wireless protocol which can sometimes cause a delay in connecting or lag when typing. This keyboard goes straight into the iPad with a physical connector which is valuable in itself. Plus, that also means the keyboard never has to be charged, which is a major bonus.

Best for Apple Pencil: ZAGG Slim Book Go

What We Like
  • Great price

  • Place to store the Apple Pencil

  • Detachable keyboard

  • Backlit keys

What We Don't Like
  • Flat hinge design

Coming in at a great price point is the ZAGG Slim Book Go. This is a streamlined version of the Ruggedbook Go above and it comes with many of the same benefits. The keyboard detaches but connects wirelessly so it continues to function.  The hinge has the same limitation, being a flat plane that rotates down. If you're setting the iPad down on an uneven surface, it can be very wobbly. 

But this case comes with the benefit of protection and a place to store the Apple Pencil and backlit keys so you can use it in the dark. All of this comes in at a great price, so if you're in the market for a keyboard for your iPad Pro, this should be on your short list.

Best Standalone Keyboard: Apple Magic Keyboard 2

What We Like
  • Slim profile

  • Really good pitch and key travel

What We Don't Like
  • Separate device, does not attach to iPad

Apple's Magic Keyboard 2 was designed to work with Macs, but it will also pair up nicely with your iPad Pro. This is the keyboard that ships with most iMacs because it's the best keyboard Apple makes. The wedge shaped design makes it great for typing. The pitch and travel of the keys are both superb. This is a really great keyboard.

It's not designed for the iPad specifically though, and as such it has one major shortcoming. It does not physically connect to the iPad; it's a separate component which makes it awkward to carry around. The whole point of using an iPad with a keyboard is portability, and this keyboard is portable. But carrying one whole unit as opposed to two different devices is always preferred. That being said, the keyboard itself is good enough to justify the inconvenience.

Best RGB: Phixnozar iPad Pro 12.9 Keyboard Case

What We Like
  • RGB Lighting

  • Trackpad

  • Apple Pencil holder

What We Don't Like
  • Short battery life

One thing that really makes a keyboard stand out is RGB lighting. It really adds flair to the typing experience. The Phixnozar iPad Pro case does exactly that. In addition to normal backlighting, you can get RGB lighting that ripples across the keys in a mesmerizing dance. It's really gorgeous. Plus, the keyboard has an Apple Pencil slot and trackpad for mouse input. The Apple Pencil slot juts out of the top of the screen a little awkwardly, but it's a small price to pay for having a place to store it.

The clamshell design also lifts the back of the keyboard up a bit so you don't get a flat typing surface. That really helps make this keyboard more comfortable to use. And it's slick looking. But that look comes at a cost of short battery life. You'll get an estimated 70 hours of battery life, as opposed to months or years out of others in this list. RGB it turns out comes at a cost, but it looks so very nice.

Final Verdict

Overall, our pick goes to the Logitech Slim Folio keyboard. Logitech's trustworthiness in the peripherals industry is well earned and this keyboard lives up to it. Back lighting, a slim profile, and an Apple Pencil slot make this an easy top pick. Add to that a great price, and it's a clear winner.


If you want a different option, as much as we love the Brydge Pro Keyboard, we have to give the nod to the Apple Magic Keyboard. It's really close to a true laptop experience which is what we're all here for after all. The magnetic attachment method is elegant, and the slim profile that it comes with just makes this a great solution. It's hard to argue with first party hardware, but the price is quite high.

About our Trusted Experts

Adam Doud has been writing in this industry for almost a decade and considers himself something of a keyboard sommelier. He has strong feelings about keyboards, and as a writer, he should.

Jesse Hollington is a tech journalist with more than a decade of experience and expertise on all things Apple. Jesse was previously the Editor-in-Chief for iLounge and has written for many other publications, as well as writing books about the iPod and iTunes.

Andrew Hayward has covered games and technology since 2006 across more than 100 publications to date. He was also an editor for Mac|Life magazine and a longtime contributor to Macworld.

FAQs

What is keyboard pitch and travel?

Keyboard pitch and travel indicate the spacing between the centers of the keys and the distance you press them. These are entirely subjective conditions. Some like keyboards that are condensed, others prefer a more spaced out layout. Some prefer short travel, others prefer a long press. It'd be a good idea to find a keyboard that you really like and measure the distance between the centers of the keys (pitch) and the travel, then find something similar.


Do I need a keyboard?

iPads Pro has a built in software keyboard that is functional. The problem you run into is in tactile feedback, or lack thereof. Also, in order to type on the screen, it has to be relatively flat which is not ideal for looking at what you're creating. A separate keyboard alleviates that.


Can an iPad pro with a keyboard replace my computer?

To a certain extent, yes. An iPad Pro with a keyboard is a very similar experience to a "computer" or laptop. iPadOS (the operating system) is definitely different than Windows or macOS, but in terms of functionality and content creation, yes, an iPad Pro and a keyboard is a great combination.



What to Look for in an iPad Pro Keyboard

iPad size and generation - When purchasing a keyboard for your iPad Pro, you need to take into consideration its size and what generation it's from. Most keyboards have attachments that are custom designed for each size and generation, and a mismatch simply won't work. Be sure you know your iPad Pro's model number and the model number the keyboard was designed for.


Backlighting - If you ever have to type at times where lighting isn't ideal, backlighting makes a world of difference. It will adversely affect battery life so it's important to turn the backlighting off when it's not needed, but backlight is one of those things that is better to have and not need than to need and not have.


Trackpad - A trackpad isn't necessary for the proper operation of an iPad, but iPadOS recently introduced mouse support for iPad which gets you even closer to a laptop experience. The precision of a trackpad/mouse can be very important to some, so a trackpad is a good thing to look for.

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