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Brydge G-Type wireless keyboard review: The best typing companion for the Google Pixel Slate

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If you’re buying a Pixel Slate, you pretty much need a keyboard. And at the moment there are basically two options: Google’s Pixel Slate Keyboard, which connects via the Quick Snap Connector and the Bluetooth Brydge G-Type. While they both have their pros and cons, the Brydge G-Type is a no-brainer.

It’s not just that it’s $40 cheaper, although that certainly helps. It’s that it does two important things that the Pixel Slate Keyboard doesn’t. It allows the Slate to be used comfortably on your lap, and it lets you switch between interfaces at the push of a button. The latter might not be an intended feature of the Brydge G-Type—the website encourages removing the Slate and flipping it around to use it in tablet mode—but it’s one I used often during my testing.

But even if you keep it in PC mode, the Brydge G-Type is still the first accessory you’ll want to buy for your Pixel Slate, even before the Pixelbook Pen. If you can wait, there will surely be better options than either the G-Type or the Pixel Slate Keyboard in due time, but if you need a keyboard for your Pixel Slate now, the choice is clear.

Worth the weight

As I covered in my Pixel Slate review, the Pixel Slate Keyboard’s design and adjustability are nice, but it’s pricey considering the drawbacks. The widely spaced, circular keys messed with my typing accuracy, for starters. Also, the thin and somewhat flimsy keyboard doesn’t really support the weight of the screen without a desk or a table backing it up.

brydge g type closedMichael Simon/IDG

The hinges on the Brydge G-Type wireless are raised.

The Brydge G-Type wireless keyboard solves all of these issues. While the design is more utilitarian than elegant, its aluminum shell looks great against the Slate’s midnight blue exterior. It’s actually a bit bluer than midnight, but the contrast works, as does its low profile that’s slightly thinner than the Slate itself.

Getting the Slate into the G-Type is trickier than it is for the Pixel Slate Keyboard, which literally is a snap. With the Brydge keyboard, the Slate slides into two hinges at the top of the keyboard. You need to line them up first and then adjust the Slate as needed, using the right-angle hinges to align the corners of the screen. It takes about 30 seconds or so to get it right.

brydge g type openMichael Simon/IDG

If you want to use the Pixel Slate as a laptop, the Brydge G-Type wireless keyboard is a great companion.

At 1.5 pounds, it’s quite a bit heavier than Google’s own offering (which weighs 1.1 pounds), but the extra heft serves the G-Type well. Where the Pixel Slate Keyboard is a bit top-heavy with the Pixel Slate attached, the Brydge keyboard is extremely well balanced.

Just like a laptop in every way

The Brydge G-Type doesn’t have a back cover like the Pixel Slate Keyboard, but the raised hinges that wrap around the back will do well enough to protect it from minor scrapes and scratches. Most importantly, it’s truly “infinitely adjustable,” opening to a full 180-plus degrees, if you so desire, and every angle in between. There’s a USB-C port on the side for powering up, but Brydge says it can go six months between charges.

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