How are the Type Cover 2 and Touch Cover 2 Keyboards Different from the Old Surface Keyboards?

By Andy Rathbone

With the arrival of the Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, Microsoft released updated snap-on keyboards: the Type Cover 2 and Touch Cover 2. For the most part, they’re identical to their counterparts, the Type and Touch Cover keyboards. They have the same number of keys, and the same layout.

The two new keyboards differ from their older cousins in these main ways:

  • Cost: They’re more expensive than the older keyboards, especially now that that the old keyboards have been marked down in stores.

  • Back-lighting: When attached, a glow rises from below the keys, making them easier to see in the dark.

  • Size: Both keyboards are a tiny bit thinner than their older counterparts. On the Type Cover 2 keyboard, the keys don’t travel down as far, increasing your typing speed.

  • Function keys: The first generation keyboards included dedicated keys for raising or lowering the volume. The Touch Cover 2 and Type Cover 2 keyboards now make those F1 and F2 keys raise or lower the screen brightness. Also, the first Touch Cover keyboard didn’t label its Function keys; the Touch Cover 2 keyboard adds the labels.

  • Sensitivity: The Touch Cover 2 keyboard includes more sensors, making for more accurate typing.

  • Trackpad: The trackpad on both new keyboards is a little wider.

Other than those differences, all four keyboards are almost identical; every keyboard works with every Surface model.