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You can buy a ThinkPad keyboard—without the ThinkPad

Many current day users have grown up accustomed to using trackpads whenever a mouse isn’t nearby, or convenient to use. However, an iconic feature of Lenovo’s ThinkPad series remains the TrackPoint (also informally known as the “nipple mouse”).

While laptop keyboards don’t exactly have a great reputation, with manufacturers often making certain compromises in the interest of a compact package, they can still be decent-to-use keyboards. In fact, the ThinkPad series’ keyboards are rated as some of the better options in the market—as far as laptops go, that is.

Now, the Lenovo has announced the ThinkPad TrackPoint II Keyboard, which is essentially the ThinkPad’s keyboard—without the ThinkPad attached. You can use it with your desktop computer, or even your non-ThinkPad laptop, and the keyboard even comes with mouse buttons (but no trackpad), and as mentioned, a TrackPoint.

Lenovo says that this bring the ThinkPad’s “iconic” typing experience into a standalone device, and the TrackPoint II uses identical “keycaps, typing distance, actuation force, scissor switches ,tactile feedback, and mouse-free TrackPoint as the ThinkPad notebooks”.

You can connect to two devices via either Bluetooth or a USB dongle, with Android supported as well.

Battery life estimates are decent, with up to 2 months on a single charge promised by Lenovo, while you can get a week of usage out of 15 minutes of charging via USB-C (another plus point there).

The ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II is expected to be available from May 2020, with a starting price of US$99.99 (about RM410). That’s certainly a pretty steep price, but perhaps the novelty factor of the iconic TrackPoint might swing things in their favour.

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