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Computer Keyboard Buying Tips

Introduction

Your staff may sometimes be at their workstations for hours on end, which means that they will need to have ergonomic computer keyboards that are adequate for the tasks that they will be performing. Purchasing keyboards with features that your staff will not utilize is not good use of your budget however, and you should try to find a balance between price and features. Below, NeweggBusiness will outline some considerations so that you can decide if they will be of value to your staff.

Connectivity

Keyboards can be connected to computers in one of two ways, wired or wireless. In terms of cost, wired keyboards can be found at much lower prices than wireless keyboards; however wireless keyboards can be used in situations where using wired keyboards would not be practical. Generally, most desktop workstations for completing general office tasks do not require wireless keyboards except in rare cases.

Wired computer keyboards have several advantages over wireless keyboards, including better responsiveness, not requiring additional software, and no need for batteries. Wireless keyboards on the other hand, decrease cable clutter and can be used with media center computers. If the computer will be used from a distance, a wireless keyboard is better than using a wired keyboard with long extension cables.

In addition to computers, keyboards can also be used with tablets to give them laptop-like functionality. For use with tablets, a keyboard will need Bluetooth® functionality, as tablets typically lack support for USB keyboards. Bluetooth keyboards can also be used with laptops and desktops, but they will need to have support for Bluetooth.

Layout

A standard Windows® compatible QWERTY computer keyboard has a 104-key layout, but there are specialized keyboards with additional keys or altered key placement. For example, a standard full-sized QWERTY keyboard will typically have a number pad to the right side of the keyboard but other layouts may drop the number pad in favor of slimmer dimensions.

Then there are multimedia keyboards and gaming keyboards that have programmable buttons, program-specific keys, and more. A standard Windows QWERTY keyboard is more than sufficient for most office tasks, and specialized keyboards are only needed for workstations that will be used for tasks that require those extra keys and functionality.

Ergonomics

Ergonomics are a very important consideration when selecting keyboards to use with your organization’s computers, as poor ergonomics can result in wrist injuries. To alleviate concerns about ergonomics, keyboard manufacturers have designed and market keyboards with comfortable ergonomics in mind. These keyboards typically have designs that split the QWERTY pattern in half and angle them so that the wrist is not bent when typing. Another approach that manufacturers may take to improve ergonomics is including wrist rests, which are often detachable. Ergonomic keyboards are usually more expensive but can reduce injury, so you may want to consider equipping workstations with them if their users will be typing for very long periods of time.

Conclusion

Selecting a keyboard for your organization’s workstations will require you to balance the needs of your staff and cost. Maximize your budget by selecting keyboards that will be more than adequate for the tasks that they will be used for and avoid keyboards that have features and functions that are not needed.

 

By NeweggBusiness Staff