A Buyer’s Guide to Keyboards for Businesses

A Buyer’s Guide to Keyboards for Businesses

by December 15, 2023

As more businesses are becoming digital, keyboards are essential tools in the workforce. This means businesses must take the time to find a suitable keyboard for their workers.

In this guide, we take a look at the many different types of keyboards that are available from suppliers such as RS Industrial Components, as well as some things to consider when purchasing a keyboard. Keep reading below and learn more.

Types of keyboards

Computer keyboards can usually be grouped into two main categories – basic or extended. Within these two categories, there are many different types of keyboards, which offer various features and functions. The different keyboard technologies allow for varying user experiences such as how hard a key must be pressed to type a character.

QWERTY keyboards

Designed to mimic the likeliness of old-fashioned typewriters, QWERTY is the most common keyboard layout. Generations of typists have come to know the QWERTY keyboard, and most learn to type with this kind of keyboard layout. This makes them comfortable, familiar and time-tested, ideal for everyday typing needs.

Wired keyboards

Wire keyboards connect conveniently to an existing USB port. These add-on devices also have lower latency than their wireless counterparts. If a user can live without one of their USB ports long term and appreciate the ability to draw from their computer’s own power source rather than batteries that will need to be replaced eventually.

Ergonomic keyboards

Ergonomic keyboards are any type of keyboard designed to reduce strain on the body from typing. These kinds of keyboards are often laid out so that users can rest their hands in a more comfortable natural position as they type. Due to their design, they can be a great choice for those concerned about posture, hand, arm or shoulder pain, or the possibility of developing typing-related medical conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Wireless keyboards

Wireless keyboards rely on a radio frequency antenna or infrared to keep users connected. They offer flexibility to move about while working on a computer without the clutter of excess wires. As keyboards are wire-free, they can also be a great option to take on the go because there will not be any cords that can tangle.

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Backlit keyboards

Backlit keyboards bring a radiance to computer work. Their ambient glow makes it easy to type in the dark or in low lighting. While they may not be a necessity, they can be a fantastic option for those with vision issues as they make it easy to see all the keys on the keyboard.

Flexible keyboards

Flexible keyboards are designed for maximum portability. They are generally made from silicon, so they can be rolled up and packed.  The silicon material also means they are very easy to clean and resistant to water and dust. This is great for users who need to travel a lot for work purposes.

Membrane keyboards

Membrane keyboards are designed without space between the individual keys. The keys are pressure-sensitive, with the different characters outlined on a flat surface. They are also quieter relatives to mechanical keyboards, which is great for those looking for a quieter typing experience.

Mechanical keyboards

Mechanical keyboards are designed to have a spring-like key action. The key action denotes how a key feels when pressed and released. A mechanical keyboard’s key action feels very similar to a typewriter, which makes them great for users who often need to type on their keyboards.

 

How to pick a suitable keyboard

Consider cost

If you are looking for a keyboard for basic typing, you may get away with choosing a cheap one. However, the more features you are looking for in a keyboard, the more it is likely to cost. There are many options on the market, which means you must balance your budget while also finding a keyboard that has all the features you need for work.

Ergonomics

For those spending hours typing on their new keyboard, it is best to get one with a basic ergonomic feature. This can take various forms, some keyboards split the keys, have curves, and are even motorised. While you should anticipate a learning curve, it is better for your wrist and hands in the long run since they reduce the stress placed on them as you type.

Wired or wireless

While wired keyboards limit distance range, it is unlikely there will be any connection mishaps. Wireless keyboards can let users type anywhere and there are no tangles, but there may be connection problems that come up. For those going the Bluetooth route, make sure that your device has built-in Bluetooth compatibility so that the keyboard will connect.

Media keys and hotkeys

Some keyboards come with various hotkeys and media keys. These include controlling volume and video or letting users complete specific tasks by pressing a combination of buttons. For those who often use the keyboard, this can save users a great deal of time.

Keyboard size

Smaller keyboards typically remove the number pad and may have shorter keys or no space between buttons. These are useful if a person needs to move from place to place often. Larger keyboards on the other hand have more hotkeys and media keys, which can provide more features for users.

 

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