An English research firm unveiled on Monday a keyboard that is less than a half millimeter thick — making it the thinnest in the world.
CSR, the firm behind the technology in products like Beats Wireless headphones and Nike+, has now created Surface, a thin slice of flexible touchscreen with a custom-printed keyboard on top.
The device connects to your tablet or smartphone using a low-power version of Bluetooth. This specially designed chip allows the keyboard to pair with the latest devices without carrying a large battery, aiding in that ultra-thin design.
Microsoft’s lightweight Touch Cover, in comparison, is 3.25 millimeters thick –- that’s 6.5 times thicker than CSR’s Surface keyboard.
The keyboard’s touchscreen capabilities mean users can swipe, pinch, zoom and use other complex gestures unavailable with normal keyboards.
While CSR hasn’t given any details on battery life or charging, it has plenty of time to sort out the details. The device will reportedly not be available for at least another year, and the current model could change depending on how manufacturers want to use the technology. Paul Williamson, the company’s director of low-power, wireless products, told The Guardian:
“This is a working prototype and a glimpse forward rather than something people will be buying this year. We might see lots of shapes and sizes, some as small as iPad Mini or a larger, more rigid form for a desktop PC, which could be curved, in any colour way, transparent or fitted with a leather folio.”