Logitech POP Keys review
The Pop Keys Mechanical Wireless Keyboard pops in color and design as its name implies. It’s flexible for a wireless keyboard with three ways to connect to the PC. However, the keyboard falls short for those with larger hands.
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Logitech POP Keys: Two minute review
The Logitech Pop Keys offers a unique take on the standard keyboard experience that’s sure to turn some heads, thanks to its bright and fun color scheme and satifying tactile response.
The Pop Keys is available now for 99/£89AU129. This puts its price point lower than many gaming keyboards, but still much higher than the cheaper entry-level ones the average buyer is more inclined to purchase.
Compared to something like the Logitech K780, meant for mobile devices and which is priced at 79 (about £65/AU110), the Pop Keys might seem a bit pricey. But it’s not nearly as expensive as some of the best gaming keyboards like the Razer Huntsman V2 Analog, which will set you back 249.99.
For a wireless keyboard, the Pop Keys isn’t necessarily overpriced, especially for what you’re getting in terms of personality and experience, but it’s definitely not a budget option by any means.
Instead, the Pop Keys sits in the middle of the typical keyboard price range, which puts it quite steep for the casual buyer, especially with cheaper keyboard options that are functional enough for everyday use.
Still, the Logitech Pop Keys is certainly unique in both look and feel, and it’s definitely meant to appeal to a younger audience. It’s lightweight and comes in three gorgeous color schemes, with round keys that resemble an old-fashioned typewriter. What really sets it apart though is the mix of modern and almost bubbly aesthetic, making it one of the best keyboards around for someone who wants all of their computer accessories to speak to their personality, and that personality isn’t gaming related.
The unusual color combinations should fall flat, visually, but instead the clashing themes blend together pretty seamlessly to create a one-of-a-kind look that’s sure to get attention.
Using it feels just as unique as it looks. Like a typewriter, pressing down on each key provides satisfying mechanical feedback and clickity-clack response.
Despite being made from hard plastic, the Pop Keys feels high-quality and the keyboard is very lightweight, making it easy to carry around. The key layout is the standard tenkeyless keyset, though there are a few extra function keys on the side.
Typing with the Pop Keys is smooth and responsive for the most part, with each key press instantly registering. An impressive feat since this is a wireless keyboard. The keyboard itself features three shortcut keys at the top, allowing you to switch between three separate devices using Bluetooth or the USB receiver. Setup is quick and easy but occasionally the connection will drop and you’ll need to do a hard reset to get it working again.
There are also several new keys meant to be shortcuts for various emojis but after testing we found them to be very inconsistent depending on the device it is connected to. For instance, it barely worked with one laptop we tried it on while it’s more effective on tablets and phones. Though played up as a major feature, it’s a rather inconsequential one in the long run that could easily have been something far more useful, such as more shortcuts for important PC functions.
A major drawback to the stylized keys, however, is that the smaller circular design can be hard to use for those with thick fingers or shaky hands. In those cases, the accuracy of each keystroke drops considerably, which slows down overall typing speed.
It’s a shame that multiple sizes aren’t offered, as the mechanical feedback of the keyboard is especially useful for those who need to feel each press. For those who’re better able to use it though, the Logitech Pop Keys is a fun, colorful alternative to the more humdrum options out there – just don’t expect too much from it.
Buy it if.
You want a unique keyboard experience The key presses feel incredibly satisfying, giving a much more mechanical and enjoyable feedback as you type.
You want an aesthetically pleasing keyboard With three eye-popping color schemes and circular popped-up keys, this keyboard stands out with its distinctive design.
Don’t buy if.
You have larger fingers or shaky hands The keys are on the smaller side and therefore not suitable for people with either of those issues, as it could make typing inaccurate and frustrating.
You’re looking for a budget keyboard Though it’s far cheaper than a gaming laptop, its price point is still a lot steeper than most standard keyboards, which can be an issue for more casual users.
Logitech POP Keys Review
Regardless of what you make of the emoji buttons, the Logitech POP Keys is a vibrant and versatile keyboard that feels satisfying to type on and will doubtlessly brighten up any dull desk space.
With its Pop Keys keyboard, Logitech set out to eliminate a problem we’ve all faced at one point or another: a lack of easy access to emojis.
While creating an entire product line for emoji lovers may seem a bit unnecessary, there’s an argument to be made that most PC keyboards have become outdated in this respect. Our smartphones and tablets have had their own emoji keyboards for years, so isn’t it time we updated our PCs to match?
Brands like Apple have incorporated emojis into their keyboards in the past (think the short-lived MacBook Pro touch bar), but few have done so with the same bright aesthetic as Logitech has with the POP Keys.
If you’re tired of trawling through the emoji tabs on Gmail, Zoom and Slack, the Pop Keys might just be the one-click solution you’ve been waiting for.
The Logitech POP Keys stands out from other Logitech keyboards thanks to its bright, eye-catching design and unique offering of emoji-flavoured customisable keys and shortcuts.
It’s a small, tenkeyless keyboard with round mechanical switches that offer a retro, typewriter-like experience – but with the benefits of a modern set of function keys. Logitech has said that the target audience here is Gen Z, and the stylish curved design and colourful finish of the keyboard reflect that.
The Logitech POP Keys keyboard comes in three colour variations – Daydream, Heartbreaker and Blast. Daydream consists of white and yellow keys on a mint and lavender backdrop, while Heartbreaker is adorned with four different shades of pink, and Blast offers a more neutral black, grey and yellow option.
All three can be paired with the matching POP Mouse, which is similarly small and portable. However, the mouse is sold separately, meaning you’ll need to pay extra to get the matching set.
I reviewed the Keys and Mouse in the colour Daydream and loved the design. I particularly like the fact that the peripherals blend in with the other colourful objects on my desk, making them feel as decorative as they are practical. I’m not sure if the keyboard would fit in well in a more rigid, professional office setting, but it’s great for home-office use or for injecting more personality into a bland-looking PC setup.
The Logitech POP Keys keyboard comes with five emoji keys attached and four more in the box, although your emoji options aren’t limited to these nine expressions. The top row of function keys is customisable, too.
If you look closely at the letters, you’ll see that they’re stuck onto the keys. This means there’s a risk of them wearing down with frequent, long-term use. However, it’s difficult to determine whether this would be the case during a limited reviewing period. I can only say that I’ve been using the POP Keys on and off for a number of months now and haven’t noticed any fading during my time with it.
I do wish that the escape key matched the rest of the keys – instead of having a metallic purple finish – but that’s more of a personal preference than anything else.
Finally, there’s a Logi Bolt USB receiver included in the box. It’s very small, so you’ll want to make sure you keep it safe when unplugged.
There are two ways to connect the POP Keys to your device – with Bluetooth 5.1 or with the Logi Bolt USB receiver. Bluetooth is compatible with a wide variety of PCs, tablets and mobile devices, whereas the receiver requires a USB port and is only compatible with Windows, macOS and ChromeOS devices.
One of the most useful features available on the keyboard is Easy Switch. This feature allows you to jump between up to three devices at the push of a button.
All you need to do is hold one of the three Easy Switch buttons to enter pairing mode and find the keyboard in your device’s Bluetooth settings. Once paired, you can just hit the corresponding key to move between up to three devices. I connected the keyboard to both my MacBook and my iPhone and found jumping between typing up a review and drafting a tweet almost seamless.
The mechanical switches are loud and clacky, designed to evoke an old-school typewriter-like feel. They’re also deep, offering a reassuring amount of travel and making them satisfying to press.
The keys are circular in shape, and their concave surfaces create a comfortable space to rest your fingertips.
I did find that the small size of the keys and their spacing required quite a bit of getting used to, as I made my fair share of typos using this keyboard right out of the box. The keys are also more sensitive than they look, meaning I often slipped and hit the wrong key. Of course, this is coming from someone who is used to shallow, square laptop keys both on my personal and work laptops. So, you may have fewer issues adapting to this keyboard if you’re already familiar with deep, typewriter-like keys.
Regarding the battery life, the POP Keys can last up to three years on the two AAA batteries that come pre-installed in the keyboard. For comparison, our current favourite mechanical keyboard, the Logitech MX Mechanical, which has a rechargeable battery, can last up to 10 months with the backlight off or 15 days with backlighting on.
Software and Features
The Logitech POP Keys keyboard comes with the five emojis and the function keys in the top row pre-assigned. If you want to customise them, you’ll need to dive into the Logi Options app.
The app is very simply laid out and offers two key features: the ability to view your Easy Switch devices and the option to assign different functions to different keys.
There are 15 keys in total that you can customise, including the five emojis, although the default options on the top row are already a nice selection. They include a button to show or hide apps, screen capture, a mute button for video calls, playback and volume controls and a dictation button.
I immediately found myself switching out the dictation function for a shortcut to create new browser tabs, but otherwise, I actually liked the selection out of the box.
You can also set different functions for different apps. I found the options listed to be rather generic and limited in this regard, with Logi Options suggesting shortcuts like copy, paste, brightness up and screen capture for every app, rather than offering more tailored functions based on each specific app.
In this instance, I found the Keyboard Shortcut option to be incredibly useful, as it allowed me to enter key combinations already attached to specific functions. For example, I was able to set the dictation key to follow the import media shortcut (CmdI) only when iMovie was open. This allowed me to access the tool with one click when using the video editing software.
Of course, you can also switch up the emoji keys on the side. Logitech has included four spaces for emojis and one for access to the entire emoji library with a pop-up.
I found the emoji keys to be useful, although I can’t say I reached for them nearly as often as I did for the other function keys. Perhaps this is because I reserve most of my emoji use for my phone, whereas I preferred to use the keyboard alongside my laptop. How much use you get out of the keys will likely depend on how often you actually use emojis on your device.
I will say the choice of emoji keycaps struck me as more millennial than its target audience of Gen Z, with two laughing faces and no skull emoji to be found. It’s clear Logitech has opted to prioritise the most popular emojis in general, but this means that – even for a millennial like me – some of my most commonly used emojis didn’t come with a matching key.
Of course, you can assign any emoji to the existing keys, but I’d love to see Logitech offer more emojis and function key options to match – even if that means selling the keycaps separately.
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Should you buy it?
You want a fun Bluetooth keyboard: The POP Keys’ compact size, customisable keys and multi-device connectivity make this an aesthetically pleasing, versatile keyboard.
You hate typos: The typewriter-like mechanical keys are clacky and satisfying to press, but they can take some getting used to.
The Logitech POP Keys is one of the most visually appealing keyboards I’ve encountered, and I truly enjoy the way it looks on my desk.
The Easy Switch feature is great if you plan on using the keyboard with two or three different devices, such as your work PC, your personal laptop and your tablet. The battery life is fantastic, too.
I’m also a fan of the degree of customisation the POP Keys afford, although I can’t say I found myself reaching for the emojis anywhere near often enough to justify an entire line of dedicated keys. I think I’d prefer it if Logitech had stuck to just one shortcut that opens the entire emoji library, or given users the option to buy keycaps specifically for the emojis they frequent the most.
The mechanical switches are clacky and satisfying to press, but they aren’t the easiest to adjust to if you’re not used to round, typewriter-like keys. If you’re looking for pure productivity and don’t have time to correct typos, you might find the POP Keys to be a bit fiddly to use – at least at first.
How we test
We use every keyboard we test for at least a week. During that time, we’ll check it for ease of use, comfort and performance of the switches. We also check each keyboard’s software to see how easy it is to customise and set up.
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What colours do the Logitech POP Keys come in? The POP Keys keyboard is available in three colours: Daydream (purple and yellow), Heartbreaker (red and pink) and Blast (black and yellow).
What is the battery life on the POP Keys keyboard? The keyboard is powered by two AAA batteries and can last for up to three years.
Does the keyboard come with a mouse? No, you’ll need to buy the matching mouse separately or get the two bundled together.
Logitech POP Keys test: Unique look, strong features
Colorful looks, emoji keys and fancy details are supposed to appeal to young people. The keyboard’s round keys and mechanical switches, on the other hand, are reminiscent of long-forgotten typewriter days. For our Logitech POP Keys review, we take a detailed look at the unique keyboard. The matching Logitech POP Mouse is also mentioned at the end of this article.
Inhaltsverzeichnis / Table of contents
Logitech POP Keys test: The scope of delivery
The Logitech POP Keys keyboard comes in a rather nondescript white cardboard box, which shows the keyboard in all its glory on the front and informs about the most important functions on the back.
The scope of delivery of the mid-priced keyboard turns out to be manageable. Besides the keyboard itself, there are four additional emoji keys, the Logi Bolt USB receiver and the obligatory safety instructions in the packaging. The manufacturer prints the instructions on the inside of the box, just like last time with the Logitech Lift (our review).
Design and workmanship
There’s no need to beat around the bush. Those who flirt with buying the Logitech POP Keys do so primarily because of the unique design. The manufacturer offers the keyboard in a total of three color variants, each with several color accents. The choices are Daydream (mint green, purple and yellow), Blast (black, gray and yellow) and Heartbreaker (raspberry and neon coral).
For the Logitech POP Keys review, we’ll take a look at the Blast version. When looking at the keyboard, the first thing that catches the eye is the compact 65 percent layout, which does without a number block as well as the middle block. Compared to 60 percent, there are still arrow keys in the lower right corner.
Above them are the emoji keys, which are set off in yellow and printed in black. Five in number. Another unique selling point of the keyboard, with which Logitech clearly addresses the TikTok generation.
Another special feature is the round keycaps, which are minimally concave (i.e. curved inwards). The F-keys, as well as additional keys around Start or ALT are also double assigned. F1 to F3 enable quick switching between several devices.
Apart from that, the POP Keys only offers a few interesting design features. We find the on/off switch in the form of a compact slider on the right side. On the bottom, we find a total of five rubberized feet including an elevation in the rear area and the cover for the battery compartment, where the USB receiver can be placed if desired.
In any case, with dimensions of 321.2 mm x 138.47 mm x 35.4 mm (width x height x depth) and a weight of 779 g including batteries, the keyboard is also perfectly suitable for taking along on trips, easily finding space in larger backpacks or bags.
Workmanship of the Logitech POP Keys
However, we were not completely convinced by the build quality of the Logitech POP Keys. Even though it is still on a good level. Basically, the keyboard feels quite high-quality, but a closer look reveals the keycaps to be quite wobbly.
This is likely due in part to the unique round shape. However, this does not detract from the practical typing experience. However, the POP Keys doesn’t feel quite as high-quality as similar expensive mechanical keyboards.
Logitech POP Keys: Practice and typing feel
While the keyboard has to make minimal concessions in terms of build quality, the typing feel of the Logitech POP Keys is completely convincing in practice. The peripheral is connected quickly and easily. The Keys is immediately recognized by our notebook via Bluetooth, and the Logi Bolt receiver is also used to set it up within a few seconds.
Admittedly: You first have to get used to the round keycaps. The resulting feeling when typing is unusual at first, but quickly becomes second nature.
Despite the emoji keys, the typing feel is completely convincing. This is due to the convincing mechanical switches. Logitech has chosen brown switches from TTC, which are in no way inferior to the corresponding counterparts from Cherry (MX Brown) or Gateron.
Along with that, the keys offer a quite quiet trigger noise (compared to clicky switches) and combination with a tactile feedback. The ideal middle ground for office environments. They release after only two millimeters and thus quite quickly. The total stroke distance is 4 mm.
Once you get used to the round keys, letters and words fly across the screen. All inputs are implemented precisely and without noticeable latency, both in Bluetooth Low Energy and in wireless mode in connection with the USB receiver. Thus, the Logitech POP Keys is also an excellent option for those who write a lot.
The keyboard is basically also quite suitable for gaming use, but this is definitely not the keyboard’s core field of application. Furthermore, the keys do not have RGB or backlighting. Thus, good lighting conditions should be provided for typing.
Unique features: Emoji keys connectivity
Besides the round keycaps, however, the Logitech POP Keys offers other unique selling points. Younger users in particular should like the five emoji keys, which are located on the right edge of the keyboard. They are also interchangeable and can be reassigned using Logitech’s Options software.
Basically, this is a nice feature for conversations outside of business emails, to send a heart or a smiling face via WhatsApp, Messenger and the like. However, it is actually five real, multifunctional additional keys. The software can assign all sorts of commands to them. For example, switching to the desktop, taking a screenshot or starting an application. The possibilities are almost endless.
The same also applies to the F keys F4 to F12, which are assigned with system functions for screenshots, mute or media control by default. They are joined by a dictation function and a delete/insert key.
The function keys to the left and right of the space bar are also assigned with functions in Windows and Mac layout, which already indicates the multi-functionality of the Logitech POP Keys. Via Bluetooth or dongle, the keyboard can also be used on a smartphone, tablet, Mac(book) or a gaming console.
Especially practical: Thanks to the Easy Switch function, up to three devices can be paired with the keyboard at the same time. Switching between platforms is done at the touch of a button on the F1 to F3 key.
It is precisely this fact that makes the POP Keys, in combination with the mechanical switches, unique. The quick system switch is insanely practical, especially for users who, for example, jump back and forth between Windows notebook and iPad.
Battery life and range of the Logitech POP Keys
The Logitech POP Keys is powered by two standard AAA batteries, which are included right out of the box. A recharge of the same is accordingly not possible. The manufacturer promises that they will last for 36 months – 3 years – when used daily.
At the same time, the wireless range of the keyboard is more than impressive in the test. Around 10 meters in Bluetooth mode still allow stable and error-free use. Via USB receiver, a range of around 12 meters is also possible.
Software connectivity: Logitech Options
Logitech Options is used as the accompanying software, which initially familiarizes us with the keyboard’s most important functions during the initial setup. Otherwise, the range of functions turns out to be quite manageable.
In the “Keyboard” tab we can reassign the functions of the F and Emoji keys, while the “Easy-Switch” tab only shows the paired devices. The firmware update option rounds off the feature set. We search in vain for macros or similar settings.
Logitech POP Mouse in a short test
Matching the keyboard, the manufacturer also offers a compact rodent in the same color scheme, the Logitech POP Mouse. The mouse can be connected via Bluetooth or Logi Bolt. However, the USB receiver is saved in the scope of delivery. With two main buttons and a dedicated emoji button below the scroll wheel, the mouse only has a few special features to offer.
At least the scroll wheel is a Smart-Wheel that lets us navigate precisely or scroll quickly through documents depending on the speed. It turns out quite small with dimensions of 104.8 mm x 59.4 mm x 35.2 mm (length x width x depth), but still weighs around 82 grams.
Due to the raised lower third of the mouse back, the ergonomics initially take some getting used to. We would only conditionally recommend the POP Mouse for permanent use. However, the mouse is certainly suitable as a mobile companion for traveling or use on the go. Due to the omission of all side buttons and the symmetrical shape, the small rodent is equally suitable for right- and left-handers.
Precise and quiet
The sampling rate of 1,000 DPI to 4,000 DPI is absolutely sufficient for office use. Especially since the built-in optical sensor always works precisely on various surfaces. Logitech also relies on a commercially available battery (AA) here, which should last for two years.
Other special features: The two main buttons trigger almost silently thanks to Silent Touch technology, while the Logitech POP Mouse can connect to up to 3 devices using Flow and quickly switch back and forth at the touch of a button on the bottom. For the MSRP of 39.00 Euros, definitely a good and stylish office mouse for mobile use. No more, but also no less.
Logitech POP Keys review: The conclusion
Logitech advertises its new wireless keyboard primarily in terms of its fresh appearance and exclusive emoji keys. Yes, the Logitech POP Keys offers both and also makes the keyboard unique.
But what really makes the keyboard stand out is the combination of its features. A keyboard that works with up to three devices at once via Bluetooth and USB receiver, switches back and forth at the touch of a button, and comes with mechanical tactile brown switches. And labeled with Windows and macOS features to boot. That’s really a hell of a lot of unique selling points, which should especially convince those who switch back and forth between devices often.
Combine all that with the chic design, the round keycaps and the excellent typing feel, and add the comparatively quite low price, and the Logitech POP Keys reveals an excellent overall package in the test.
Only the somewhat wobbly keycaps and a missing backlight prevent a rating in even higher regions. If you are looking for a versatile, compact and pleasant wireless keyboard, the Logitech POP Keys is an excellent choice. As a lifestyle duo, it is also quite well supported by the downright tiny Logitech POP Mouse when traveling.
Logitech Pop Keys Wireless Mechanical Keyboard review: Style and substance
The Logitech Pop Keys is a cute mechanical keyboard with productivity features to boot.
By Mike Epstein | Updated Apr 12, 2022 7:53 AM EDT
The Logitech Keys, a style-forward wireless mechanical keyboard from Logitech, has a lot to offer. Mike Epstein
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The Logitech Pop Keys is the cutest of cute keyboards. As part of Logitech’s new creator-focused “Studio” line of peripherals, the multicolored wireless mechanical is dressed to impress with colorful, synchronized components, round typewriter-style keycaps, and customizable keys signified by emojis (and extra emoji keycaps in the box).
At the same time, it also has a few powerful features from Logitech’s MX productivity peripherals line. On paper, it strikes a lovely balance between personality and power. In practice, the situation isn’t quite so clean. The Pop Keys doesn’t have as robust a configuration platform as Logitech’s MX line and its round keycaps have some typing-related drawbacks. Despite those flaws, it’s still a relatively distinctive offering for typists who want a keyboard that looks and feels special.
Logitech Pop Keys: Design and features
The Logitech Pop Keys is the cutest of cute keyboards. The multicolored wireless mechanical takes cues from the enthusiast world of customizable mechanical keyboards. In keeping with enthusiast keyboard fashion, the 85-key design is crammed into a single block of keys, without the kind of spacing you’d normally find on a TKL-sized keyboard. At 12.5 by 5.31 by 1.66 inches (WDH), it’s slim but deceptively large. That’s a strength, though, not a weakness. Most keyboards that look and feel like the Pop Keys tend to be smaller and have fewer keys. The “60-percent” form factor, popular among enthusiasts, usually has between 60-65 keys, which means ditching the function row, the arrows, and other useful keys. If you like how your friend’s custom keyboard looks, but can’t bear to part with the utility of having easy access to what manufacturers normally consider standard, then the Pop Keys offers an easy half-measure.
And it is genuinely pleasing to look at. The Pop Keys come in three different designs: the lavender, yellow, and mint pastel-laden “Daydream” (pictured); a black and yellow “Blast” edition; and the “Heartbreaker” in shades of red and pink. In a keyboard market dominated by sleek, Apple-esque productivity designs and sharp, angular gaming keyboards, the softer, rounded Pop Keys stands out. Following enthusiast trends, it trades in backlighting for an “open” design where the board’s mechanical switches are open and clear to see. The design of the components is the aesthetic, and that’s pretty cool.
What kind of switches does Logitech Pop Keys have?
The Pop Keys features Logitech’s brown switches. Tactile switches, which feature a strong tactile bump without the tinny clack of “clicky”-style switches, require a bit more force to push them down, which may rankle a pro esports player but provides a better overall typing feel. Typing on the Pop Keys generally feels great once you find your footing.
For those new to mechanical keys, they do make more noise than a virtually silent membrane or scissor-switch keyboard. I personally don’t find the sound distracting and many microphones can filter out the noise for remote video calls. Mechanical keyboards could be distracting in an open-plan office, in general, but the clack of the keys is no more distracting than ringing phones, co-worker chatter, and other everyday sounds of working in public.
So … are those rounded keycaps really a problem?
While I am generally a fan of the Pop Keys’ FOCUS on style, there is an element of the design that crosses a line, impeding functionality to a degree. It turns out that, even after spending years reviewing dozens of keyboards, I’ve never reviewed one with round keycaps. It turns out they take a bit of getting used to.
Since the keyboard base is square and the keys are round, there are very small gaps between the keys directly adjacent to each other and wider gaps between the keys diagonal from each other. I personally found that it took a fair amount of time for me to get used to the different gaps. For my first week or so with the keyboard, I found myself making more typing errors, similar to what happens when I’ve switched to an ergonomic keyboard. Most of the time, I’d find myself hitting two keys instead of one—going for the “j” I’d type “jh”—since the rounded edges of the keys are so close to each other. Occasionally, I’d hit the rounded-off corner of a key and my finger would teeter over the larger diagonal gaps.
The Pop Keys is not the first keyboard to evoke the old-school styling of a typewriter by using round keycaps rather than square, so this is not a new concern. It’s also worth noting that, as with other types of keyboards with alternative layouts, I did adjust eventually. Still, for power users and people who want to hassle even the slightest semblance of a hassle, it’s worth knowing going in that there will be an adjustment period. Is the Pop Keys’ look worth the growing pains? That’s up to you.
What else does the Logitech Pop Keys do?
While the aesthetic design is at the heart of the Pop Keys novelty, it’s also a very appealing technical package. The wireless design supports Bluetooth Low Energy and a more stable 2.4GHz wireless connection via a Logitech Bolt dongle. As with Logitech’s MX line, the Pop Keys offers the ability to connect to up to three devices, one via dongle and two via Bluetooth, and swap between them on the fly via hotkeys on the function row.
It also supports Logitech Flow, a software-driven feature that lets you wirelessly move between multiple connected devices with a single mouse and keyboard. (You can only use Flow if you also have a compatible mouse.) Despite the fact that it’s been around for a few years, Flow is generally reserved for Logitech’s best productivity gear, so that’s a sign of the Pop Keys place in the Logitech keyboard food chain.
Does it come with any software?
You can configure the Pop Keys on Windows and macOS using Logitech Options, the configuration app for the company’s productivity mice and keyboards. Options allow you to use Logitech Flow if you have the right mouse, but its main function for the Pop Keys is the ability to customize the emoji keys on the side of the keyboard. While the keys default to the emojis shown on the keycaps out of the box, you can technically assign these keys to any emoji, key, macro, or a wide range of system-level commands. You can also change most of the keys in the function row. (F1-F3 are locked to ensure you can always switch to each wireless channel.)
You can create app-specific keyboard layouts with different customizable keys, which is especially nice if you plan to use the emoji keys for system-level functions.
I love the idea of having specific emoji keys. Like ‘em or hate ‘em, emojis have achieved a level of ubiquity where it’s time to start making room for them on the keyboard. That said, the keys would not be all that useful without Options giving you the ability to change them. Everybody has different go-to emoji that they’d like on hand. And, if you don’t use them, the configuration app opens the door to all kinds of other shortcuts, from opening your favorite apps to taking screenshots, and more.
That said, the configuration options are fairly limited compared to gaming peripherals and even some high-end productivity keyboards—most gaming keyboards let you change any key to almost any function—but this is about all you need for day-to-day work and play.
Tell me about battery life
Normally, this is the part where I ding Logitech for relying on disposable AAA batteries to supply the Pop Keys with power. In general, I don’t approve of using disposable batteries, even when it’s cost-efficient or leads to less charging time, because it also leads to more e-waste. However, I will make an exception in the Pop Keys case because, according to Logitech, the Pop Keys can last for up to three years on a single pair of batteries. This isn’t all that surprising: Backlighting often cuts the battery life in peripherals by 50-60 percent. Still, the number is striking and, with regards to the environment, means that you’ll likely only change the Pop Keys batteries once or twice in its lifespan.
What about a mouse?
Unsurprisingly, Logitech has a Pop Mouse to go with the Pop Keys, which comes in the same three color schemes as the keyboard. While I understand the desire to pair the keyboard with a matching mouse to complete the look, I’m personally not a huge fan of the Pop Mouse and would recommend most people break up the set.
The 39.99 Pop Mouse is a miniature travel mouse that provides very little ergonomic support. And while it has a couple of tricks up its sleeve, including the same multi-device pairing as the Pop Keys and Logitech Flow support, not all of the flourishes land. (I like having an emoji menu key on the keyboard, but I do not want one on my mouse.) Overall, though, mouse ergonomics are simply too important. A black or grey MX Master 3 or MX Vertical will look just fine next to the Pop Keys and you’ll have a much better experience.
So, who should buy the Logitech Pop Keys?
The Logitech Pop Keys is a surprisingly great mechanical keyboard. Despite putting its flashiest foot forward, the 99.99 keyboard has a comfortable typing feel, useful customizable keys, and advanced features for multitaskers. Despite a few small shortcomings that would keep it from hopping to the top of the productivity keyboard pile, it’s still a really neat choice for anyone who cares about how their keyboard looks and feels but also wants that powerful productivity-focused polish.
As Reviews Editor, Mike Epstein helps shape Popular Science’s gear-focused coverage, including product reviews and roundups. He’s covered the consumer technology and video games industry for over ten years, writing reviews and service-focused articles for sites like IGN, Gamespot, Lifehacker, Gizmodo, PCMag, LaptopMag, Variety, and more.