The Lofree mechanical keyboard is here.
Mechanical keyboards are still around, although you’d be hard-pressed to find a model that’s still being used by the masses. That could change thanks to the introduction of the Lofree wireless mechanical keyboard, which launches as an Indiegogo project beginning today, March 7.
We don’t usually cover keyboards or Indiegogo projects at AppAdvice. The Lofree keyboard deserves a mention, however, for two important reasons.
First, I’ve been lucky enough to be among the first to receive a Lofree keyboard for review before its release. For the past month, I’ve put my Pure White Lofree through the paces using numerous devices in my home. So far, it’s been a terrific experience and one worth reporting.
Additionally, unlike other projects on both Indiegogo and Kickstarter, the one for Lofree comes with a hard release date since the product is already in production. Backers will receive their rewards soon after the campaign ends in May and the final product arrives on Amazon in June.
Why a Lofree Mechanical Keyboard?
Though my first experience with a computer was with an Apple IIe in middle school, I learned to type on an old-school IBM typewriter. I still remember the noise the keys made on that machine and remained convinced decades later that it was those sounds that helped to make me a good typist.
Mechanical typewriters became silent long ago, of course. In recent years, however, mechanical keyboard have somewhat taken off. Though mostly for gaming (see the Razer Black Widow Tournament Edition), mechanical keyboards are also found in business environments.
What is a mechanical keyboard?
Most modern keyboards use dome-switch technology which registers a keypress whenever you type and push down a silicone dome. When the dome collapses, it connects to two circuit traces.
Mechanical keyboards, by contrast, have real, physical switches that register as you type. These type of keyboards typically have a longer lifespan since you can remove and replace the keycaps.
Most of today’s mechanical keyboards aren’t exactly flashy. Most, like the ones from Cherry and Logitech, are available for business and personal use. For those looking for something truly old-school, there’s the Qwerkwriter keyboard, which will set you back $400.
What Lofree offers
So what makes Lofree special? It’s both retro and elegant. Compared to the Qwerkwriter, it’s also economical. Better still, it’s compatible with macOS, iOS, Windows, and Android.
Available in Pure White, Turquoise Blue, and Sandstone Black at launch, the Lofree wireless mechanical keyboard uses Gateron switches, which allow it to emit sounds that you would expect to hear from a typewriter.
The keyboard also features wired mode, auto-sleep, and backlighting options. It also offers simultaneously pairing, so that you can use it with multiple devices without re-pairing.
It’s time to learn
The Lofree’s unique design featuring round, concave buttons, does present a learning curve. Even Lofree admits that it might take of few days until your fingers are used to the experience. I would agree.
It took me nearly a week before I was entirely comfortable with the process. The wait was worth it, however. Thanks to Lofree, I enjoy typing at my desk again.
Setup is a breeze
You can pair up to three devices with the Lofree mechanical keyboard at the same time. In my household, I use the keyboard with my iMac, iPad Pro, and Apple TV.
When using the Lofree with my computer, I use the included micro-USB cable, which charges the keyboard automatically. To save energy when in wireless mode, the keyboard’s backlight switches off after five minutes of being idle. It enters sleep mode after 10 minutes of inactivity. Just click a key to reactivate.
If you’re looking for a beautiful and practice keyboard, you can’t go wrong with the Lofree. This is an exciting new product and I can’t wait to see what other color choices arrive in the future.
The pricing of the Lofree mechanical keyboard starts at $74 on Indiegogo. When it launches in stores, it will retail for $99.