To say we are excited to be breaking this news to the world would be a massive understatement. Proper made-for-Chrome-OS accessories are few and far between, but keyboards and touchpads are not just hard to find, they are impossible to find.
The reason? They simply don’t exist. Sure, we’ve had bundled keyboards and mice that came with Chromeboxes here and there, but those devices always required a USB dongle much like the Logitech accessories I use on a daily basis.
I’ve unfortunately gotten used to using Windows keyboards at my desk, but that is out of necessity only. What I’ve done most times lately is extend my display and keep my Chromebook below the bigger screen so I can use my Chrome OS keyboard. I like the clean simplicity of using a made-for-Chrome-OS keyboard, but I’d really like to have one that isn’t attached to my device for better flexibility.
The Bigger Issue
The touchpad is my larger pain-point, though. I like touchpads. Correction: I like good touchpads. I love using touchpads on Chromebooks on most devices, and I love the experience on Chromebooks like the Pixelbook. With great tracking, smooth gestures and satisfying clicks, there’s something gratifying about using a great touchpad.
I’ve been lucky that the Chrome OS team has decided to keep moving the drivers forward with the Logitech T650 trackpad I use daily, but I’ve always felt the clock was ticking on the life of that accessory. After all, Logitech hasn’t sold it for years at this point, so there will be a point where the Chrome OS devs decide to just let it die.
As we reported recently, support for the Apple Magic Trackpad is coming, but it isn’t here yet and, again, being a non-Chrome OS device makes the prospect of it always working in the future a questionable one at best.
Simply put, I really want a proper solution.
Brydge Is Answering The Call
Enter Brydge, right on the heels of their fantastic G-Type Keyboard, with two devices that Chromebook users have needed for years: a wireless bluetooth keyboard and touchpad.
These devices are, unsurprisingly, built beautifully and in an eye-catching manner. The keys feel fantastic on the keyboard, the surrounding aluminum looks and feels amazing, and the glass on the touchpad is smooth and responsive. Right now, both are a few months from launch (Brydge is saying early Spring), but our initial time with them was just fantastic.
Probably the most exciting thing is the haptic motor that will come in the touchpad (the pre-production unit we used didn’t have this in place just yet). Think about the vibrations that Apple uses on their trackpads to simulate a click and we’re told this is what the Brydge wireless touchpad will do as well. No moving parts, but it will feel like a satisfying click each and every time.
And, because these are both built with the same tech underneath as the Brydge G-Type Keyboard (see our review), both of these wireless accessories will continue working perfectly regardless of how Chrome OS evolves over time.
With the addition of Bluetooth profiles and pairing set to follow your Google account across devices, using these desktop accessories will be a simple, turnkey solution for those looking for more productivity in their Chromebook at the desk. We’re excited to see finalized products in the coming months, but also feel extremely excited about what is already on offer from Brydge, here.
After years of hand-me-downs and semi-solutions for accessories, it is such a releif to finally see top-tier accessory makers taking Chrome OS seriously. We have little doubt these two new devices from Brydge will be the start of more of this type of evolution in the Chrome OS ecosystem, and for that we can hardly wait.Shop Brydge Accessories