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  • Bluetooth Keyboard Support Comes To The iPhone & iPod Touch


    One thing that I have always wanted to see the iPhone capable of doing is accepting a connection to a wireless bluetooth keyboard. With Apple's newest line of keyboards being so small, and a plethora of other foldable, travel-friendly keyboards available on the market, it just seems incredibly ideal to be able to use a keyboard on the go for taking notes or writing emails at meetings or at a local coffee shop (might look kinda silly but it gets the job done faster). This isn't anything new, as almost all smartphones already have this capability.

    The Bluetooth Keyboard Driver, just released in Cydia, fills this void for jailbroken iPhone users. The App is based on the open-source BTstack project, which also brought us the Wii Mote to work with apps like emulators. This driver runs on all iDevices with Bluetooth support. It is unclear yet, if it works properly on the iPhone 2G. The current version available in Cydia is titled as a "Demo", as it only works inside the app itself, but don't fret for the developer says a version that works outside of the app (in the background/with other apps) and in Cydia "soon".

    After installation, start Keyboard demo, then make your Bluetooth Keyboard discoverable (see Keyboard manual). Select keyboard in the device list. A pin code alert tells what PIN to enter on the keyboard. When connected, you can use the keyboard to type into the provided text field. An initial set of Keyboard layouts is provided.
    Official Page: http://keyboard.ringwald.ch
    Usage: iPhone Bluetooth Keyboard Driver

    Not supported in v1.0
    * Apple Keyboard: quick auto-connect
    * Selection with SHIFT + Cursor
    * Copy/Cut/Paste
    * Cursor keys in MobileTerminal
    * CAPS-LOCK key
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Bluetooth Keyboard Support Comes To The iPhone & iPod Touch started by nickhesson View original post
    Comments 39 Comments
    1. ufcsean's Avatar
      ufcsean -
      wow this is pretty cool
    1. rkisling's Avatar
      rkisling -
      Very cool... having trouble getting the app to work outside the test app (have installed the current version, not the demo from yesterday). Anyone have similar issue or get it to work?
    1. ecd5000's Avatar
      ecd5000 -
      pretty cool the only problem is i dont have a BT keyboard, might have to pick one up for this, note taking made much easier!
    1. CAPcadetJC's Avatar
      CAPcadetJC -
      Once again the iPhone lacks in features already available on other smarts phones. Why is Apple so far behind on getting the iPhone up to snuff on features available on so many windows mobile phones already?
    1. Melech518's Avatar
      Melech518 -
      ^WTF are you really going to use a bluetooth keyboard on your iPhone for?? Really? Stop b*tching already and leave the iPhone if you hate it so much. Jeez
    1. StealthBravo's Avatar
      StealthBravo -
      lol
    1. Melech518's Avatar
      Melech518 -
      Where u been bro?
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      saw the pro version of this app avialable for sale in cydia today. shortly after it was removed...ohh. allready commented. gotta read all comments next time [=/] ?
    1. masterp0606's Avatar
      masterp0606 -
      what kinda keyboard is that?
    1. havingifun's Avatar
      havingifun -
      Has anybody gotten this app to work yet? I bought it and I have it running in the background, but it does not work with other apps as advertised.
    1. Shanness's Avatar
      Shanness -
      For those that can't see what this would be useful for, there are two compelling usages that I already use this great project for.

      1. Taking notes in a meeting

      2. ssh! This is the killer usage I reckon. With Mobile Terminal (in Cydia), you get a command prompt on the phone, and can type without the pop up keyboard displayed! i.e. you get all the screen real estate, but still have the keyboard! From there, you can ssh into work or home computers and do emergency support stuff from your car etc.

      I leave my fold up keyboard in the glovebox, so I can do support from anywhere I am. If I'm not in the car, I'm likely near a computer..

      For those people that are having problems using other apps with the keyboard, it seems you need to reboot the iphone after installing the keyboard driver.
    1. ploth's Avatar
      ploth -
      Quote Originally Posted by havingifun View Post
      Has anybody gotten this app to work yet? I bought it and I have it running in the background, but it does not work with other apps as advertised.

      Yes it works well as the DEMO - inside the app only.

      YOu have to wait for the full version to buy befpre it will work in other apps. I need it urgently for note taking. Hope it isn't too much $
    1. LGgeek's Avatar
      LGgeek -
      Quote Originally Posted by Shanness View Post
      For those that can't see what this would be useful for, there are two compelling usages that I already use this great project for.

      2. ssh! ..........

      I leave my fold up keyboard in the glovebox, so I can do support from anywhere I am. If I'm not in the car, I'm likely near a computer..

      For those people that are having problems using other apps with the keyboard, it seems you need to reboot the iphone after installing the keyboard driver.

      yes perfect for me. what keyboard do you have or would you recommend ( folding type) ?
    1. Mira30's Avatar
      Mira30 -
      this might come in handy if you type a lot on the iphone
    1. hawpunch's Avatar
      hawpunch -
      i for one find the btstack keyboard program to be one of the most useful. the only annoying thing is having to deactive and activate the btstack to use the keyboard. i would also like to see it auto connect to my apple bluetooth keyboard and maybe some settings/preferences so i can select how long it stays connected to my keyboard. and although the website says that it inhibits auto-dim, i find that on my iphone it does not. besides all that, a great product and i just hope it continues to improve.

      hmmm, that's strange, when i use backgrounder with btstack keyboard, although the btstack shows its on and connected with my apple bluetooth keyboard, i can't use the keyboard in other apps (haven't tried to see if it works in the btstack keyboard app itself).
    1. starjar's Avatar
      starjar -
      Nice. It's hard finding the compatible bluetooth keyboard.
    1. ploth's Avatar
      ploth -
      I agree - it would be great to see this auto-connect to the keyboard and then be able to switch back to my BT headset when not using the keyboard.

      This functionality should be built in to the iPhone for sure.
    1. WaLLy3K's Avatar
      WaLLy3K -
      This would be fantastic for IRC and MSN, when you've got long chat sessions and don't have a laptop handy (or don't own one at all).

      I'd buy a BT keyboard to specifically use this, that's for sure.
    1. collegar's Avatar
      collegar -
      Quote Originally Posted by thevmax View Post
      I've been looking for this app for a while. And as the article mentions, other smart phones have this already... I'mm looking forward to the version that works outside the app! Bravo!
      I have reviewed the app, and now it works in other applications. You can read the full review at:

      bit.ly/8KIp02