If you travel a lot for work but prefer to use a full keyboard over the one on your device, a laser keyboard is a great alternative. It uses innovative technology to quickly and accurately detect what you’re typing (Source). The best laser keyboards are easy to set up and easy to use almost anywhere.
A laser keyboard is sometimes known as a projection keyboard or a virtual keyboard. It is a device that connects to your computer and projects an image of a full keyboard on a flat surface. When you press a “key” on the laser keyboard, it senses a disruption in the projection and translates this to a keystroke on your computer (Source).
Laser keyboards can be connected either by USB or Bluetooth and are battery-powered. They may also have other features like speakers or a virtual mouse.
While laser keyboards use impressive technology, they’re accessible to just about anyone. They’re lightweight, portable, and usually have a battery life that lets you use it for extended periods of time. If you travel a lot or prefer a full-sized keyboard to a keyboard on a mobile device, a laser keyboard can be very useful.
Prior to purchasing a laser keyboard, you’ll need to consider its speed in characters per minute. You’ll also need to consider its battery life, display, and its compatibility with your device. The charging time should also be a deciding factor.
Give yourself access to a full keyboard anywhere you go with one of these top-rated laser keyboards.
What Is a Laser Projection Keyboard?
Laser projection keyboards are designed as input gadgets that are equipped with infrared sensors to detect any motion in their immediate vicinity. To answer how exactly the laser keyboards work, we’re going to examine the main components and conditions of use.
- It is all about infrared projection: A laser keyboard uses an infrared light projection to map the layout of keys. The principle of typing is very simple. By breaking the key links with your fingers, you cause the input device to detect it as if a key is pressed.
- Bluetooth addition: This extra feature can make an infrared keyboard compatible with mobile devices and computers. That allows you to pair a keyboard with a variety of devices and gadgets.
- Limitations of laser keyboards: The maximum distance from the actual monitor or output device is 40 feet in most models. So, don’t get too far away from your monitor when typing and make sure the surface you’re using as a keyboard is perfectly flat to type accurately and quickly. For instance, a laser keyboard is used for its comfortability and portability whereas if you do not need to input a lot of numerical values from time to time, buying the tenkeyless mechanical keyboard is a wise move.
Comparing The Best Laser Keyboards
|Celluon EPIC Ultra-Portable Full-Size Virtual Keyboard|
|AGS Wireless Laser Projection Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard|
|LAMASTON Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard|
|Virtual keyboard, ShowMe(TM) Laser Projection Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard|
|iNextStation Wireless Bluetooth Projection Virtual Keyboard|
|MOJO Bluetooth Wireless Laser Keyboard|
|Stwie Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard|
|Gangxun Virtual Wireless Laser Keyboard|
|Serafim Holographic Laser Keyboard|
|Tangxi Mini Virtual Keyboard|
1. Celluon EPIC Ultra-Portable Full-Size Virtual Keyboard – Best Overall
This keyboard is designed to support an assortment of gadgets. In this regard, it is compatible with Android 4.0 and later, iOS 4.0 and later, Blackberry 10 as well as Windows XP and later. Additionally, the EPIC Ultra portable supports all Bluetooth HID devices. Additionally, the software used in this device is constantly updated to include compatibility for emerging platforms.
The unit allows you to alter several settings to suit your own preferences. For instance, you can easily customize the display brightness, sound feedback and sensitivity of the keyboard to your desired levels. This makes the EPIC Ultra=Portable one of the most versatile keyboard options available today.
The unit features an inbuilt Polymer Lithium-ion battery. This battery is capable of delivering 660 mAH of current at 3.7V. With such a long-lasting battery on your unit, you do not need to worry about plugging it in every now and then or even replacing the battery.
- Compatible with a Myriad of devices
- May be used on any opaque, flat surface
- Equipped with a Lithium-ion Polymer Battery
- Adjustable sound feedback, brightness and sensitivity
- Features Bluetooth V3.0
- Has a compact and portable design
- May not support high typing speeds
2. AGS Wireless Laser Projection Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard – The Best Laser Keyboard for iOS Devices
Additionally, the unit is compatible with several Smartphone and Tablet brands in the market today. You will also find the keyboard pretty easy to use. This may be attributed to the interactive user interface used in the product. Since you are looking for a really portable option, battery capabilities ought to be a key consideration. In this regard, the product is equipped with a capable lithium ion battery.
This battery may be recharged through your tablet or phone and will not lose charge fast. This ensures that you have an uninterrupted typing experience for many hours. With regards to connectivity, this product mainly uses Bluetooth. As such, it can only work with Bluetooth enabled devices. You will also find this keyboard compact and lightweight; hence easier to carry around.
- Features a virtual mouse
- Equipped with a rechargeable battery
- Features a full QWERTY keyboard layout
- Offers Bluetooth connectivity
- Supports a myriad of devices
- Easy to pair and use
- The charger is not very durable
3. LAMASTON Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard – Best Value for Money
No products found.What if you had a smaller virtual laser keyboard that does much more? The LAMASTON Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard is one such product. This product offers 3 main functions; as a virtual keyboard, Bluetooth speaker and a virtual mouse. Even so, the virtual keyboard is priced below $35. This is, without a doubt, one of the products that offer the best value for your money.
With regards to convenience, several aspects of this laser keyboard may be adjusted to suit user preferences. For instance, you can easily adjust the keyboard brightness; keyboards sounds and turn the beep sound on or off. Additionally, the unit allows you to turn the speaker on an off. You will also love the fact that this keyboard supports several languages.
If you use laser keyboards during your travel, make sure to buy the best headphones for better music experience.
To change your preferred input language, you should press and hold ‘Menu’ and then press the space key. This method is only applicable to iOS systems. If you are using the keyboard with a Windows or Android device, you should refer to the set of input method for the device. The keyboard may be connected through Bluetooth or USB; hence is compatible with many devices today.
- Can also serve as a virtual mouse
- Supports many devices
- Fitted with a long-life rechargeable battery
- Features good touch sensitivity
- Equipped with a Bluetooth speaker
- Compact and lightweight design
- The mouse functionality of the product is only usable on Android devices
4. Virtual keyboard, ShowMe(TM) Laser Projection Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard – The Best Affordable Laser Keyboard Option
The laser projection offered by this product has undergone several upgrades to make it smarter and more stable. For increased consumer satisfaction, the manufacturer replaced the mini USB port initially offered for the product with a micro USB port. As such, it is now easier for you to find a compatible cable for your ShowMe Laser Projection Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard.
The new model will last longer, without the need to plug it in. this may be attributed to the recent battery upgrade, from a 600 mAh to 1000 mAh capacity battery in the product. As such, you can now use your virtual keyboard for longer before recharging it. For enhanced battery life, the unit is designed to automatically change into sleep mode after 8 seconds of inactivity.
- Features Automatic Sleep Mode
- Equipped with a micro USB port
- The battery lasts longer
- Fitted with Bluetooth speakers
- Relatively affordable
- Offers reliable sensitivity
- You may find the keyboard less accurate
5. iNextStation Wireless Bluetooth Projection Virtual Keyboard – The Best Lightweight Laser Keyboard
No products found.If you are looking for the perfect blend of functionality and portability in your laser keyboard, you should consider buying the iNextStation Wireless Bluetooth Projection Virtual Keyboard. One thing you will love about this product is that it is lightweight and will not take up much space. Regardless of its compact design, the unit offers a full-size QWERTY keyboard in the form of a safe laser.
With regards to functionality, this is one of the fastest wireless virtual keyboards you can find today. Owing to its unmatched accuracy, this iNextStation keyboard is capable of detecting up to 350 characters per minute. When it comes to compatibility, the unit is built to connect with a vast array of devices and operating systems. In this regard, it supports Bluetooth connectivity.
Some of the platforms supported by this laser keyboard include Android 3.1 and later, iOS 4/5/6, Windows Phone 7, Max OS X, Blackberry 10 and Windows XP/VISTA/7/8. As you can see, you can connect your iNextStation keyboard to virtually ant Smartphone, iPhone, iPad, PC or tablet without any problem.
- Comparatively affordable
- Can support an array of devices
- Allows for fast and accurate input of data
- Supports Bluetooth 2.0 HID profile connectivity
- Features a mouse mode
- Compact and lightweight design
- Equipped with mini Bluetooth speakers
- The Keyboard and mouse functionalities cannot work at the same time
6. MOJO Bluetooth Wireless Laser Keyboard – Full-Size Projection Keyboard
Such a feature makes it a convenient option for typing without making typos. Furthermore, it equips a virtual mouse that you can use with all smart devices easily.
Accompanied with Bluetooth compatibility, the Mojo laser keyboard gives you a battery backup of three hours at the max charge. For recharging, plug it through the USB port present on one of its sides.
- Charges quickly
- The emitted laser light is extremely bright, which might irritate some users.
- Not that efficient on a reflective desk
7. Stwie Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard – Quite Convenient
No products found.If you need a portable laser keyboard, then Stwie’s compact wireless model would be a convenient choice. This device easily pairs with Android, Apple, and other tablets. Besides Wi-Fi connectivity, you also get Bluetooth to give you a quick connection to specific devices.
The projection displays a vibrant red color that is easy to see and use without any troubles. Additionally, this mini-wireless laser keyboard has a virtual mouse that you can toggle on or off if needed.
Furthermore, it accompanies a USB port to transmit commands through a cable as well. It is also the port that you can use for charging the keyboard unit.
- It accompanies an inbuilt Bluetooth speaker
- Adjustable settings for sound and brightness
- The mouse is only compatible with Android OS.
8. Gangxun Virtual Wireless Laser Keyboard – Most Innovative
Additionally, it comes equipped with a small Bluetooth speaker that is great for playing music and notifications through a programmed voice. Even the battery has been enhanced in this device to 1000 mAh, which is offered by LG brand.
No doubt, Gangxun offers you quality through this ergonomic laser keyboard.
- It has a small Bluetooth speaker
- Authentic LG battery
- The keyboard projection is not that large.
9. Serafim Holographic Laser Keyboard – Compact And Lightweight
Despite being compact, the keys are rounded and spaced out properly so that you can type accurately. Besides a keyboard, you can choose between the four inbuilt virtual musical instruments, namely drums, bass, guitar, and piano.
The versatile design comes with a slot where you can easily place your smart device without the need for an external stand. Besides, you get a 2000mAh power supply that makes it a power bank as well.
- Multifunctional, as it has virtual musical instruments too
- Portable power bank with 2000mAh battery
- Ergonomic design to clamp smart devices
10. Tangxi Mini Virtual Keyboard – Great For Fast Typing
Furthermore, you can use it for almost all operating systems without any issues. The laser projects the keyboard in red color for easy viewing. It even supports mouse-based operations for easy pointing.
It does need an opaque surface for best viewing angles. Despite it all, it gives you a decent battery backup. The Bluetooth and wireless connectivity are also quite good for letting you use it as per your convenience.
- Compact and lightweight design
- Compatible with most operating systems, including Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, etc.
- Comes with a key-ring strap
- The keyboard layout is not full-sized
How Do Laser Keyboards Work?
Even though laser keyboards are simple devices, their working principle is quite intricate. They are emitted by means of special projectors so that a virtual keyboard shines on a surface that’s used for typing.
These keyboards are connected to the device you’re typing on with a USB cord or wirelessly. Either way, the letters you are typing will be sensed by a built-in sensor and transferred into the connected device.
That’s how the letters are typed with laser keyboards. Sound complicated? Let’s break it down as simple as possible for you by answering these questions:
- How are infrared keyboards recorded? These smart devices combine artificial intelligence with the sensor technology to allow for the user’s interaction with the connected device.
- How the finger movements are detected? The device is able to detect and predict the movements of your fingers. Once the keystrokes are captured and determined by a processor, they are translated to the actual text.
- How the reference interface is projected onto the surface? This is possible thanks to a holographic optical element (HOE), which is illuminated with a laser diode. It acts as the user interface. When you press a key on the laser keyboard, the reference plane emits infrared light that’s reflected to a sensor module.
- How does the text appear on the screen? The reflected light travels to the image sensor driver via the infrared filter. That sensor works in sync with a virtual hardware interface that synthesizes data from the light and sends them to the connected device. As a result, the text is being displayed on the screen.
Why Buy a Laser Keyboard?
If you are thinking about purchasing a laser keyboard, then you will want to rest assured that you’re making the right decision. Here’s why you should consider getting this device:
- Highly portable – If you are one of those people who travel a lot, a virtual keyboard is a good choice for you. It can be set up easily with a mobile phone or tablet. This will allow you to use your keyboard just about everywhere. Simply connect it to your mobile device via Bluetooth or USB cable and enjoy typing while on the go.
- Battery life is good enough – With a laser keyboard, you will be able to type continuously for about three hours. The best models come with powers saving modes to enhance battery life.
- Fast typing – Some laser keywords, especially the high-end models, feature Bluetooth 4.0 technology. This allows for decent typing speed, as there are no delays in keystrokes.
- Affordable price – Laser keyboards are competitively priced, so most people can afford to buy one.
You don’t need to clean a laser keyboard. But if you own a mechanical keyboard check our step by step guide on how to clean a mechanical keyboard.
Things You Must Know Before Buying a Laser Keyboard
Are you are looking for a portable typing solution or are you just after the trendy and modern keyboard in the market? You should consider buying some of the best Laser Virtual Keyboards today.
This technology will display a virtual keyboard wirelessly on any flat surface. You can use this virtual keyboard just as you would any conventional keyboard.
The only difference is that you will not need the bulky hardware and cords, commonly associated with QWERTY keyboards, to use a laser keyboard. With regards to portability, the projector for this keyboard is often the size of a regular matchbox.
Since this technology is a bit new in the market, choosing the right virtual laser keyboard may be a daunting task. In this regard, here are some of the things you should consider while shopping for the right one:
1. Battery Life
Just like many other users, you probably are after a virtual keyboard because it is more portable. In this regard, it is advisable to choose a unit that offers an extended battery life.
Most of the available units today will last for about 3 hours under continuous use. Some of the modern units feature modes that enhance battery life.
Basically, the power saving modes in these units are meant to minimize power consumption by the laser keyboard. For instance, this mode will automatically dim the keyboard after a certain period of inactivity.
While shopping for the best laser keyboard, you should go for the one with modes that give you the best battery life.
Speed is the other aspect that you need to consider while shopping for the best keyboard. How many characters can your preferred virtual keyboard model detect per minute?
The right keyboard speed will mainly depend on the intended application. For high-speed typing, it is advisable to go for keyboards that can detect between 350 and 400 characters per minute.
In addition to the typing speed, you also need to consider the pairing speed offered by your preferred unit. It is advisable to go for the laser keyboards that are easy and quick to install and pair with your devices.
You do not want to waste a lot of time installing drivers on your computer, right? You should buy the laser keyboards that do not require the installation of software drivers.
Not all the available virtual keyboards are compatible with all gadgets. For instance, some of the leading brands may work well with PCs, but fail to work with Macs. This being the case, you should only buy a keyboard that is compatible with several of the operating systems available today. This will allow you to use the keyboard on a vast array of computers and gadgets.
4. Range of Adjustable Brightness
There is no point in having a laser keyboard if you cannot see the projection under certain light conditions, right? Therefore, you should consider buying a unit that offers a considerable range of adjustable brightness.
With such inbuilt control settings in your preferred unit, you will be able to regulate the brightness of the keyboard, hence be able to see the projected keyboard under different light conditions.
Ready To Buy The Best Laser Keyboard?
As you may have realized, every virtual laser keyboard is unique in its own ways. Similarly, different users are looking for different aspects while shopping for these products.
For instance, some are looking for affordability and effectiveness. Then there are those who are looking for impeccable performance, speed, and extended compatibility in their virtual keyboards.
FUN FACT: Laser keyboards were invented Canesta, a semiconductor company which was founded in 1999. The company also produces 3D sensors that are used in laser keyboards.
Jimmy G says
Enjoyed your views on the various laser units.
1- Can you raise any of these units to change the scale of the keyboard without affecting performance?
2- Is it possible to change the colour of the keyboard on these devices?
Thanks for your feedback and efforts.
Isaac Atia says
Changing the scale seems to affect performance. The color can’t be changed on these devices. I haven’t come across any that you can change the color.