Apple’s Wireless Keyboard, Generation 3, was released in October 2009 and was a slight revision to the Generation 2 version. The Generation 3 version used only two AA batteries (instead of three) and became Apple’s new standard, shipping with iMac computers released the same day.
Like its Generation 2 predecessor, this keyboard was thin and had an aluminum enclosure with thin white keys, similar to the laptops of the time. In addition, functions were added to the function keys such as media controls. Its round power button was found on the right side of the keyboard—opposite the cylindrical battery enclosure. It connected via Bluetooth.
This keyboard style was updated one more time to a Generation 4 version when Mac OS X Lion (10.7) was released. The Generation 4 version updated two function keys: the Exposé key was changed to a Mission Control key, and the Dashboard key changed to a Launchpad key.
This keyboard design was replaced entirely on October 13, 2015, with the Apple Magic Keyboard.
The “Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad features an extended layout, with document navigation controls for quick scrolling and full-size arrow keys for gaming. A scissor mechanism beneath each key allows for increased stability, while optimized key travel and a low profile provide a comfortable and precise typing experience. The numeric keypad is also great for spreadsheets and finance applications. And the built-in, rechargeable battery is incredibly long-lasting, powering your keyboard for about a month or more between charges.”
The keyboard used a Bluetooth connection and shipped with a Lightning cable for charging. It was 0.16–0.43 inches high, 16.48 inches wide, 4.52 inches deep, and weighed 0.86 pound.
This Space Gray color was discontinued some time in Summer 2021.
The Apple Keyboard was also referred to as the Apple Standard Keyboard and was offered in addition to the lighter and slimmer Apple Desktop Bus Keyboard. The name Apple Keyboard would later be applied to different Apple keyboard designs, but this was the first use of this name.
This Apple Keyboard used Apple Desktop Bus (ADB) connections. The keyboard offered two ADB connections allowing the user to connect an Apple Desktop Bus Mouse to the keyboard (or directly to the back of the computer). This keyboard was both sold separately and included as an option with the Macintosh II and SE in 1987.
This keyboard also included a power button, a feature that would remain on Apple keyboards until the early 2000s. (The original Apple USB keyboard included with the original iMac was the last Apple keyboard to include a dedicated power button.)
This particular keyboard is damaged in the right side, but its performance is not affected.
The Macintosh Keyboard, Model M0110, was included with the original Macintosh. This keyboard was also shipped with the Macintosh 512K.
This keyboard may be the simplest of all Apple keyboards because it lacks arrow keys and a numeric keypad. It used a telephone-style connector (RJ-10) to connect to the Macintosh, but the cable was wired differently than a standard telephone cord (a telephone cord is not interchangeable and will result in device damage).
This keyboard also introduced the “Command” key and symbol to the world. Apple II computers were in wide use at the time and included the “open Apple” key (a key with the outline of the Apple logo) and a “closed Apple” key (a key with a solid Apple logo), both used for shortcut and other functions before the Macintosh. (The Open- and Closed-Apple keys were also used on the Apple Lisa.) The “Command” key and symbol were used on this original Macintosh Keyboard and functioned similarly to the “Open Apple” key on the IIe. The keyboard that replaced this original Macintosh Keyboard design, the Apple Desktop Bus Keyboard, continued the tradition of the “Open-Apple” symbol by printing the Open-Apple on the same key as the Command symbol.
For years, users (especially teachers, including me) referred to keyboard shortcuts using the “Open-Apple” terminology, such as “Open-Apple-C” (for Edit > Copy) or “Open-Apple-P” (for File > Print), instead of using the arguably more elegant, and now standard term, “Command.”
The Apple Adjustable Keyboard is Apple’s only ergonomic adjustable keyboard. This keyboard was released in 1993 and used the then-standard ADB (Apple Desktop Bus) port to connect to Macintosh computers. The QWERTY keyboard is split down the center between the 5/6, T/Y, G/H, and B/N keys, while a large space bar remains fixed in the center. The keyboard can be split up to 30 degrees, and palm rests are included to support the wrists while typing.
The keyboard shipped with a separate, ADB-connected numeric keypad, also with a palm rest. The keyboard and numeric keypad each have feet to raise the keyboard to a steeper angle.
The purpose of this ergonomic design was to resolve repetitive stress injuries that could lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. The primary problem with this keyboard is the vast amount of desk space that is required to use it.
The Keyboard packaging provides the following information:
The Apple Adjustable Keyboard has been ergonomically designed to make typing more comfortable. Its features include:
A split alphanumeric section that can be adjusted from a standard typewriter-style configuration to an open-angle configuration.
An adjustable keyboard slope and optional palm rests (included), which help your forearms and hands assume a neutral, more comfortable position.
A separate extended keypad (included in this package) with 15 function keys, 6 special keys, 4 cursor-control keys in a standard inverted-T layout, and an 18-key numeric keypad.
Please read the manual that comes with this keyboard to find out how to best use this product. Be sure to read the “Health Concerns Associated with Computer Use” section.
This keyboard is compatible with all Macintosh computers equipped with an Apple Desktop Bus connector and system software version 6.0.7 or later.
The keyboard uses two types of switches/buttons: ALPS SKFS switches for the keyboard keys (providing “clicky” tactile feedback) and recessed buttons for the function keys, volume, power, and other non-typing controls.
I have two of these keyboards in my collection. One includes the original box.
The original Apple Wireless Keyboard was released on September 16, 2003. It was based on the design of the white Apple Keyboard with white keys in a clear plastic case. Unlike the wired version, it did not have USB ports to connect external devices.
The Wireless Keyboard connected using Bluetooth and operated on four AA batteries. The batteries were accessed on the bottom of the keyboard behind a cover secured by two plastic screws that could be opened by turning one-quarter turn using a coin.
This keyboard can be used with Macintosh computers running Mac OS X 10.2.6 or later.
This particular Wireless Keyboard has a French key layout.
The Apple USB Keyboard was released with the original Bondi blue iMac in 1998. This keyboard used translucent plastics to match the iMac models that shipped with them for the next two years and was available in Bondi blue, blueberry, strawberry, lime, tangerine, grape, and graphite.
The bottom of the keyboard included a support leg that allowed the keyboard to lay flat or tilt up. The keyboard included a full row of half-height function (fn) keys, a keypad, and a dedicated power key in the upper-right corner.