Lumia 2520 Power Keyboard: First review of the accessory that completes Nokia's tablet

Creating a tablet that doubles up as a laptop has proved a challenge - with this first hands-on, David Phelan finds out if Nokia have cracked it...

The Power Keyboard is the gadget you need if you want to use the Lumia 2520 as a real laptop substitute. Nobody likes typing on unyielding glass – just about the very first accessory Steve Jobs announced for the first iPad was a keyboard in case you were typing War and Peace. Though actually, why would you do that? It’s been, you know, written already.

Anyway, the Power Keyboard does what the title suggests, it brings proper keys and a battery to add to the Lumia 2520 tablet. The tablet, is considerably lighter than the fourth generation iPad, though no match in weight terms for its replacement, the iPad Air.

Of course, the keyboard adds extra weight, but it’s worth it. First of all, it shelters the beautiful tablet in a soft-touch matte-finish wrap, held in place by magnets. The tablet feels reassuringly well-protected. The case matches the curved edges of the 2520, making it equally comfortable to hold.

Then there’s the battery which considerably increases the battery life compared to the tablet alone, so you won’t worry about running out of juice even if you’re really putting it through a lot. The two together offer around 15 hours of usefulness.

The outside of the case also features two USB sockets, which is the kind of handy connectivity the iPad lacks. With the keyboard unfurled you access these slots from behind. They’re USB 2.0, not 3.0 which is a shame but they’re still useful.

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop holds the £399 Lumia 2520 at Nokia World.

Read More: Nokia Lumia 2520 review - Microsoft take note, this is how it's done

Open it up and the laptop effect is persuasive: the tablet, held tightly at top and bottom in solid-feeling plastic clips, plonks magnetically into place next to the keys. The keys themselves are small but well-spaced and have enough bounce to make them a pleasure to use. They’re fast and responsive and you quickly feel you’re using a regular, if cosily small, keyboard. The keys include a dedicated Windows key to flip back to the Start screen. And there are direction keys to navigate a document or highlight text, say.

There’s also a trackpad which works splendidly, including recognising multi-touch so you can scroll up and down a document with two fingers, for instance. If the keyboard is resting on your knees, there’s a certain flimsiness to the trackpad but on solid surfaces there’s no problem.

Because the 2520 has a solid, physical connection to the keyboard there’s no waiting for Bluetooth to connect, either.

I used this set-up in Las Vegas at the Consumer Electronics Show and it felt every bit as useful as a regular laptop, but for the fact that Windows RT is fussy about what programs you can use, limiting your choice to the apps in the Windows Store.

The Nokia Lumia 2520 is a highly useful and enjoyable tablet. The keyboard adds an extra layer of usefulness. And since the tablet includes a sim card slot, you can use it and be connected wherever there’s a 3G or 4G signal.

The keyboard isn’t cheap – it goes on sale any day now for £150 – but it takes an already impressive tablet to the next level.

Voices
Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond delivers his speech at the Scottish National Party (SNP) Spring Conference in Aberdeen, Scotland April 12, 2014.
voices
Arts & Entertainment
Jessica Pare as Megan Draper and Jon Hamm as the troubled, melancholy Don Draper
tvAnd six other questions we hope Mad Men series seven will answer
Life & Style
The new low cost smartphone of Motorola, 'Motorola Moto G', is displayed in Sao Paulo, Brazil on November 13, 2013. The smartphone, with dimensions 65.9mm W x 129.9mm H x 6.0 - 11.6mm D is equipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 with quad-core 1,2 GHz CPU, a 4.5-inch display and Android Operating System 4.3 and a suggested price of $ 179 USD.
techData assessing smartphones has revealed tens of millions of phones are at risk of being harvested
News
David Beckham is planning to build a stadium in Miami’s port for a new football team he will own
news... in his fight for a football stadium in Miami's port area
VIDEO
News
weird newsMan live-photographs cracking of mysterious locked box on Reddit
Sport
Oliver Giroud kisses the Arsenal badge after giving the Gunners the lead
sportArsenal 3 West Ham 1: Two goals from the German striker and one piece of brilliance from Giroud puts the Gunners back above Everton
News
Plans to decriminalise non-payment of television licence fees would cost the BBC £500m according to estimates drawn up within the Corporation
people
News
weird news
Arts & Entertainment
Seeing red: James Dean with Sal Mineo in 'Rebel without a Cause'
filmAs 'Rebel without a Cause' is re-released, Geoffrey Macnab reveals how its star James Dean perfected his moody act
News
Obesity surgery in rats has been found to change the way the body processes alcohol
news
Arts & Entertainment
Heads up: Andy Scott's The Kelpies in Falkirk
artThe Kelpies are the latest addition to a growing army of giant sculptures. But naysayers are asking what a pair of gigantic horse heads tells us about Falkirk?
Life & Style
US Airways has been at the centre of a Twitter storm after it responded to customer complaints with a graphic sexual image
techUS Airways takes an interesting approach to customer service
Arts & Entertainment
Philip Arditti as Yossarian and Christopher Price as Milo Minderbinder in Northern Stage's 'Catch-22'
theatre
Arts & Entertainment
The Purple Wedding: Joffrey and Margaery Tyrell tie the knot
TV The second episode of the hit series featured a surprise for viewers
Life & Style
Back to nature: women with body issues have found naked yoga sessions therapeutic
lifeDoing poses in the altogether is already big in the US, and now it’s landed here – in mixed classes
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Management Consultancy - Operational Research Analysts

    £35000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: You must ...

    Application Support Analyst (MS SQL, java based webserver, batch scripting)

    £36000 - £40000 Per Annum On call allowance.: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd:...

    Prudential Risk/Operational Risk Associate - London

    £350 - £400 per day: Harrington Starr: An opportunity has arisen at a FCA regu...

    Senior Finance Business Partner /Projects Specialist

    £52000 - £62000 per annum + outstanding benefits and bonus: Pro-Recruitment Gr...

    Day In a Page

    Homelessness: Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

    Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

    Zubairi Sentongo swapped poverty in Uganda for homelessness in Britain. But a YMCA scheme connected him with a couple offering warmth and shelter
    A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park

    A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

    When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park
    The pain of IVF

    The pain of IVF

    As an Italian woman vows to keep the babies from someone else’s eggs, Julian Baggini ponders how the reality of childbirth is often messier than the natural ideal
    Supersize art

    Is big better? Britain's latest super-sized art

    The Kelpies are the latest addition to a growing army of giant sculptures. But naysayers are asking what a pair of gigantic horse heads tells us about Falkirk?
    James Dean: Back on the big screen

    James Dean: Back on the big screen

    As 'Rebel without a Cause' is re-released, Geoffrey Macnab reveals how its star perfected his moody act
    Catch-22: How the cult classic was adapted for the stage

    How a cult classic was adapted for the stage

    More than half a century after it was published 'Catch-22' will make its British stage debut next week
    10 best activity books for children

    10 best activity books for children

    Keep little ones busy this bank holiday with one of these creative, educational and fun books
    Arsenal 3 West Ham United 1: Five things we learnt from the battle between the London sides

    Five things we learnt from Arsenal's win over West Ham

    Arsenal still in driving seat for Champions League spot and Carroll can make late charge into England’s World Cup squad
    Copa del Rey final: Barcelona are paying for their complacency and not even victory over Real Madrid will put things right

    Pete Jenson on the Copa del Rey final

    Barcelona are paying for their complacency and not even victory over Real Madrid will put things right
    Rafa to reign? Ten issues clay courts will serve up this season

    Rafa to reign? Ten issues clay courts will serve up this season

    With the tennis circus now rolling on to the slowest surface, Paul Newman highlights who'll be making the headlines – and why
    Exclusive: NHS faces financial disaster in 2015 as politicians urged to find radical solution

    NHS faces financial disaster in 2015

    Politicians urged to find radical solution
    Ukraine crisis: How spontaneous are the pro-Russian protests breaking out in Ukraine’s east?

    Ukraine crisis

    How spontaneous are the pro-Russian protests breaking out in Ukraine’s east?
    A History of the First World War in 100 moments: The first execution at the Tower of London for 167 years

    The first execution at the Tower of London for 167 years

    A history of the First World War in 100 moments
    Fires could turn Amazon rainforest into a desert as human activity and climate change threaten ‘lungs of the world’, says study

    New threat to the Amazon rainforest:

    Fires that scorch the ‘lungs of the Earth’
    Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City: And the winner of this season’s Premier League title will be...

    Who’s in box seat now? The winner of the title will be ...

    Who is in best shape to take the Premier League prize?