The Apple Wireless Keyboard, as shown, is a way to use a top-notch aluminum physical keyboard without tethering it to the iPad. It operates from up to 30 feet away from the iPad via Bluetooth, the wireless technology.

[Credit: Courtesy of Apple]
Credit: Courtesy of Apple

If you have an Apple TV connected to your HDTV, you can stream the screen of your second- or third-generation iPad to the HDTV by using AirPlay. And although you probably can’t see it from 30 feet, the Apple Wireless Keyboard is great for using on the couch, where you can easily see the screen.

As with any Bluetooth device that the iPad makes nice with, you have to pair it to your tablet.

The Bluetooth keyboard takes two AA batteries. It’s smart about power management, too; it powers itself down when you stop using it to avoid draining those batteries. It wakes up when you start typing.

The Wireless Keyboard is very thin, so it’s easier to take with you than the original Apple Keyboard Dock. If you use a backpack, briefcase, messenger bag, or even a large purse, you almost certainly have room for the Apple Wireless Keyboard.

Not all the function keys on the Wireless Keyboard, will, um, function on your iPad. They’re there, though, because you can use the same keyboard with a Mac.

The iPad ought to work fine with any keyboard that supports Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR technology. A very nice option is the Verbatim Wireless Bluetooth Mobile Keyboard that includes iPad- and iPhone-specific keys, folds in half, and includes a nice leather carrying case.