Over the past few years we’ve seen a few convertible Chromebooks with 360-degree hinges and touchscreen displays that let you use the notebooks in tablet mode. But 2018 is the year we’re starting to see the first true Chrome OS tablets.
The $600 HP Chromebook x2 is a 2-in-1 tablet with a detachable keyboard. And the Acer Chromebook Tab 10 is a more affordable tablet with a starting price of $329, a 10 inch display, and a focus on the education market. It also doesn’t come with a keyboard at all… and Acer currently has no plans to offer one.
If you absolutely need a keyboard, you could just pick up a Bluetooth model or plug in any old USB keyboard. But accessory maker Belkin is launching a new line of USB-C keyboards designed specifically for Chrome OS tablets.
Right now, that basically means they’re designed specifically for the Acer Chromebook Tab 10, but we may see other Chrome OS slates in the future.
Belkin will offer two models at launch: a $40 Wired Tablet Keyboard for Chrome OS, and a $50 Wired Keyboard with Stand for Chrome OS.
For the most part, these are similar to any other portable keyboards you’d find… but there are a few unusual features. First, they have USB Type-C ports instead of Type-A. And second, the keyboard layout is optimized for Chrome OS in a few ways, including:
- The caps lock key is also a search key.
- There are page back, forward, and refresh keys in the top row.
- There are also special keys for triggering full screen mode, adjusting brightness, volume, and other functions including cut, copy, paste, and media playback controls.
Since the Belkin keyboards are designed for use in classroom settings, the company also notes that they have a few features to make them easier to manage. The model with a built-in tablet stand, for instance, has a stackable design that makes it easy to store multiple keyboards together. And both versions have a compartment that can hide the USB cable when it’s not needed.
via Chrome Unboxed