Microsoft To Unleash Ultra-Thin Designer Bluetooth Desktop Keyboard In May

Ever in trend with thinner-is-better, Blogging Windows is reporting a May launch for the Microsoft Designer Bluetooth Desktop. Microsoft's Brandon LeBlanc speaks of the keyboard's sleek design, as well as the unexpectedly high quality typing experience born of the Designer's chiclet-style soft touch keys. LeBlanc specifically calls out the Designer's Function Keys, which offer one-touch access to Search and other Windows features, as well as the board's "Media Center" keys that literally put control of both music and video at the user's fingertips.

(Source: Microsoft)

Utilizing the latest Bluetooth 4.0 tech, the Designer Bluetooth Desktop pairs up with desktops, laptops, and tablets running Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows RT 8, Windows RT 8.1, Android 4.4, and Mac OS X 10.10 (Yosemite). iOS is not specifically listed on the Microsoft's pre-order page for the bundle, though perhaps this is a catastrophically unfortunate sales language oversight that instead falls under "Bluetooth 4.0 enabled devices". The Bluetooth connection is instant and completely wireless, without need for any USB transceiver dongles.

Though perhaps not the star of the show, Designer's BlueTrack Technology powered mouse is no throw-in. Combining the power of optical with the precision of laser, the Designer mouse can be used on virtually any surface. And the mouse is ambidextrous, so non-righties need not feel as though they've been relegated to Left Field. The Designer mouse can also go nearly six months between AAA battery changes.
Top-notch functionality in place, LeBlanc riffs on Designer's "awesome design", which is "all about subtleties and attention to detail":

For example – there are magnetics on the battery doors that glide gently into place. Don’t worry, the battery doors are very secure when closed so you don’t need to worry about the batteries falling out. And calculated precision was used in every space and depth of each key on the keyboard so that when you’re typing it feels just right. And you get a perfect clicking feel and sound with every stroke of the mouse.

The $99.95 price of the Microsoft Designer Bluetooth Desktop strongly indicates premium, however, considering the obvious emphasis placed on build quality and design — it is called "Designer", after all — this entry point is in line with today's finer keyboard-mouse combos. The bundle is available for pre-order now (with a May shipping date), however, the Designer mouse can be ordered separately and will be available on March 19.