Rappo BT Ultra-slim Keyboard for iPad E6300 – Review and Teardown

Some people like to use the iPad onscreen keyboard, while others find it easier to use a separate more “physical” keyboard.  I was very lucky to obtain a Rappo BT Ultra-slim Keyboard for iPad E6300

, but also very unlucky to be able to use it only for a few days before its obvious flaws came out. So today we have a review and teardown of this wireless keyboard which made for iPad, can also be used for a Mac computer. Below is an overview on the keyboard.

This specific keyboard comes in two colours: either black or white. It features are very nice and elegant design which feels very solid and quality. The keyboard is smaller than other keyboards, but that was made on purpose to obtain better mobility. It has bluetooth 3.0 which is the latest version of bluetooth and it has a claimed battery life of up to one month. When I first received the keyboard I liked the feel of it and the features that it had on the top row of buttons, e.g. sound up, lock device, etc.  However when I started to type that was the moment when I started to dislike it. I felt really cramped up and I felt that the keys were positioned far too closely together. Not to mention that they had a very “cheap” feel to them as they were very wobbly when I pressed them. I then placed the thing on the table and noticed that it kept on sliding on one side, the problem appeared to be coming from those bottom rubber stoppers which were imbalanced and one was positioned higher than the other.

The next day I decided to take the keyboard to school with me to use it with my iPad. I put it in my pocket and continued to do so throughout the day. At the end of the day when I come home I retrieve the keyboard from my blazer and notice that the keys have fallen off. I look in my blazer pocket and do not find any, it appears that from the rubbing of the keyboard the keys must of have fallen off and onto the ground. Surprisingly no one told me I was dropping keys throughout the day. That was the final chance for the keyboard to prove itself and after that I decided not to use it, but to take it apart…

The teardown.

There were no visible screws on the front, the back and underneath the keys so I had to use brute force to rip off the back of keyboard, where I assumed the goodies were! To my surprise I did not find much.

It appears to just have a single board and a lithium battery. On the board itself I was only able to find what perhaps looks like a micro controller (AIROHA AB1108), a BL24C128 EEPROM (I got no idea what this is, I am still not into digital electronics), a 5 pin device with 2YL6 written on it and a 3.7V 1.04Wh battery, the rest were a bunch of SMD resistors, capacitors, two LEDs and two switches.

The electronics in this thing are beautiful and the components are laid out and soldered on very nicely! I am very happy with it in terms of electronics. But since I have already broken inside of this thing and can’t put it back together I am going to reuse this for a later project.

The verdict: A nice keyboard with nice build quality on everything except the keys themselves which are the most important part. I would probably not recommend buying this keyboard and in my opinion it is not worth the $40 it costs, but thats up to you! What I do like is the design, it is a fantastic idea, but it seems to be a little bit underdeveloped and need a bit more review. The features are very nice and very useful to use. The bluetooth connection is fantastic and without any complaints, apparently it works up to 10 meters.

Ratings

Design: 9/10

Portability: 5/10

Features: 8/10

Build Quality: 7/10

Overall: 29/40

I will probably turn this into a little project where its just a single key keyboard, I saw this somewhere on Instructables and will have a further look into this project.

-mintelectronics

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  1. #1 by poetryofamadman on June 3, 2012 - 7:54 pm

    I just took apart my Apple keyboard yesterday. It quit working, but the two usb ports still work so I’m going to use those somehow.

  2. #2 by mintelectronics on June 3, 2012 - 8:28 pm

    Yeah those would be awesome to salvage and you can then reuse them onto another project!
    – Cheers!

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