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  1.    #1  
    I would like to answer a few questions concerning the pocketop keyboard, along with mentioning a few things I found extremely helpful that no one bothered to place in any review I have read:


    The Pocketop keyboard works great with ALL models of the treo. The driver is not specific to one model of treo or the other. As a matter of fact, there is only ONE driver for all Palm os devices, with a few exceptions (e.g. Sony). For reference though ,I have the treo 300, and the keyboard, and I think both are fantastic products.

    The only limitation you have with the two is that the location of the ir port on the treo is not standard, and the treo is a bit larger than the devices the pocketop keyboard was designed for.

    The solution? Easy.

    Using the UPDATED drivers found on the pocketop website, screen rotation is available on the treo. I simply rotate the screen 180 degrees (so that it is upside down), then place it on the stand. It holds the treo fine, and the ir essentially line up ON THEIR OWN. This eliminates the other problem I had with the keyboard... playing with the reflector like a geek.

    First off, no, the metal bar that folds out on the stand to hold your pda DOES NOT interfere with the ir signal AT ALL. My guess is that the designers anticipated this and thats why they went with a slim metal bar instead of say just a piece of plastic to hold the device up on the stand(which would not allow the ir signal through).

    Secondly, yes the treo is a little delicate when positioned on the stand like this, and it only fits bare, i.e. outside any case you may have. But remember, the stand can be removed from the keyboard, so you don't have to worry about knocking it over by moving your keyboard. And believe me, the way the stand is designed, almost anything can knock over your treo, even if it sat properly. Not to say it is a flimsy design, just that with any such universal solution, concessions will be made to accomodate all current (and future) PDA designs.

    Lastly, some people (myself included, before purchasing) will consider that if a dialog box appears, you will have to open the flip case to use the stylus on the screen, which would be a giant pain in the ****. However, a HUGE feature, which I never heard of (including the pocketop website) eliminates this problem.

    By pressing the right shift key twice, you activate a mouse emulation mode. A mouse pointer appears on the screen, which you move with the arrow keys and select with the enter button. Presto, no need to even use the stylus.

    The only applications I have had problems with while operating the keyboard are blazer and snapper mail. With blazer, the phone goes to a white screen and locks. At that point you WILL need your stylus to perform a soft reset. Snapper mail gives inconsistent errors, all of which occur when trying to send or retrieve email. I believe both of these problems are due to the following reason: When the keyboard driver is initiated, it takes complete control of your ir port. Infrared communication uses the same port as the modem and hotsync cable. The manual mentions this as it explicitly states that you cannot hotsync with the driver enabled. Not to worry, one keyboard press and one stylus stroke disables the driver. I simply type my emails and place them in my outbox. Before I put the treo away, I press the email button (thank God for Snappermail!) and my emails are sent.

    Also, I have QuickOffice Premier 7, and the keyboard works flawlessly with it. (Finally, office in my pocket!)

    All in all, a great combination of products. I will purchase the treo 600 (hopefully the bluetooth one, if it sees daylight quick enough) and I imagine the experience with the keyboard on THAT treo will be as close to a pocket computer as I will ever need to go.
  2. Rusty J's Avatar
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    #2  
    The following refers to the MicroInnovations / Pockettop IR keyboard. This is the one with only 4 rows of keys, and separate number and punctuation shift keys.

    This keyboard can be used with a Treo upright on its stand, with two minor tweaks. The first is to add a middle notch in the retaining-wire detents on both sides (these are the "bump" that it goes over to lock it in place in the up and down positions) so that it will stay put when pulled up halfway. [1]
    Then, add a strip of foam tape to the underside of the HotSync connector to make it even with the back of the Treo. [2] The foam tape will catch on the wire retainer in the half-way up position.
    With these modifications, the Treo will rest flush with, and a little further down on, the stand than in the stock arrangement.
    The keyboard's IR transmitter will beam through the opened lid to the mirror and thus the IR port, but only if placed far enough away -- approximately 6" [3].
    Blazer doesn't play well with the screen-rotation hack. With the screen in normal orientation, there is no problem.
    WordSmith has an interesting conflict with the rotation hack -- you type with invisible ink! Newly-typed text does not display until you rotate the screen again.
    RecoEcho+ conflicts with the keyboard driver. Disable it when the keyboard is in use.
    I hadn't seen the mouse/cursor thing -- I'll see if I can get it to work, both with the driver I'm using now, and with the current version on the website.

    Notes:
    [1] Pull the wire up halfway to locate the place where the notches should be. A razor blade (or, preferably, an X-Acto knife) can be used to make the notch.
    [2] I used model airplane wing-seating tape (1/4" wide by 1/16" thick, with adhesive on one side only). More-commonly-available double-sided foam tape (sold as mounting tape) can be used if cut to size. Cover the exposed sticky side with clear tape.
    [3] To find this distance, enable the keyboard driver, switch to the Memo Pad application, and keep typing the same letter repeatedly while sliding the keyboard away from the PDA. When the letter shows up on the screen, you're in the right place.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by Rusty J; 06/22/2003 at 10:52 PM.
    -Rusty
    Blackjack, Tilt; Treo 90, 270-680; Palm Vx, i705, T|T3, iQue 3200; Nokia N800, E71
  3. #3  
    somewhere I recall reading that I must somehow disable the keyboard application for my thinkoutside keyboard if I want to be able to use the beam function?
    Bob
  4. santas's Avatar
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    #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by ardint

    Using the UPDATED drivers found on the pocketop website, screen rotation is available on the treo. I simply rotate the screen 180 degrees (so that it is upside down), then place it on the stand.
    Does anyone know if the rotate works for the 600/650?
    Less than 400 posts to get my own little treo icon!

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