About 16 months after introducing the Eee Keyboard at CES in 2009, Asus says the computer-in-a-keyboard will finally be available for purchase in the US by the end of the month.

Engadget reports that while Asus has finally committed to a ship date, there’s no official word on pricing. The last I’d heard the company was planning to charge between $500 and $600 for the computer, but that was a few months ago which is an eternity in consumer electronics time.

The Eee Keyboard basically packs the guts of a netbook including an Intel Atom processor, some solid state storage and video decoding hardware into a keyboard. It has wireless HDMI connectivity which means you can connect the Eee Keyboard to your HDTV to sit on the couch and surf the web or watch online video.

The computer also has a built in touchscreen display, but it’s too small to use as a primary display. Instead, it can show widgets for things like weather, TV listings, IM contacts, email, or social networking sites while you’re viewing something else on the big screen TV.

If you’re still having a tough time figuring out why you’d want a computer in a full sized keyboard instead of a laptop that you can hook up to your TV via a few wires, you can check out the promotional video below, which Asus released a few days ago.

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10 replies on “Asus is finally ready to ship the Eee Keyboard this month”

  1. Can you get a version of this with just the keyboard? I love the key style that this keyboard has, and I refuse to buy an Apple keyboard. Anyone know of one that is like this, sans computer?

  2. I don’t know if I’ll buy one, but I’m definitely interested. I could see this being very useful in a kitchen. I want to put an LCD TV on the wall of my kitchen, and it would be nice to be able to hook up a computer to check email, look up recipes, play YouTube videos of recipes, etc. Of course any old computer, nettop, netbook, Mac Mini could do the job, but if there’s a computer, there has to be a keyboard, so might as well consolidate devices…

  3. I would consider it if the price was closer to their netbooks; at or below $400. It should be lower since netbooks have screens that one could use while the keyboard has a small screen useful for widgets and other similar programs. It looks cool. IMO; it is a retro design (older idea with newer technology).

  4. Features that would be nice:

    1. Built in IR transmitter to turn on said TV. Guess we’d have to put one on one of the USB ports.
    2. Being able to actually use that second screen as mouse control. Can’t tell if that’s part of the basic functionality.
    3. Battery and inductive charger. Most of the time, this thing would probably be sitting on the coffee table, although the ability to pick it up and use it on the couch once in a while would be great, and being completely wireless is a big bonus.

    1. Yes, the touch screen can be used to control the mouse and scroll the page. There’s videos on youtube covering the features not covered in the ad video. Things like the keyboard lights up, etc.

  5. Cool concept, Brad you are wrong wireless always trumps wired! But the price and the Atom are a bit of a worry; how is that going to handle steaming HD video to a big screen TV?

    1. A Broadcom HD decoder is built in, that will handle the video streaming.

      Still I don’t see why that would justify a price of $500 or $600 for a device which is basically a plain netbook, just without screen. You can get 2 netbooks for the price of this “keyboard”.

  6. Well, I’m not planning on buying one, but I hope they do reasonably well. I like the fact that computers are getting to the point where they don’t need to actually look visually like a computer, but still deliver a very computer like experience… If that makes any sense. I love that the form factors we’ve known and largely been stagnant with are being exploded left and right.

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