Pro tip: use one keyboard to instantly switch between a Mac, iPad and iPhone

If you type away on a computer all day with a tablet or phone nearby, you might fall in love with this app. If you type away on a computer all day with a tablet or phone nearby, you might fall in love with this app.
Cam MacMurchy

I read a lot of tech blogs and websites, and listen to far too many podcasts, about apps and systems that supposedly enhance our productivity. I worry anything I could write here has already been done before — probably by many. But there’s one handy little app I discovered and use daily that I haven’t seen mentioned anywhere yet: Typeeto.

Typeeto is a discreet Mac menu bar app by Eltima Software that allows you to toggle between your Mac and iOS devices for keyboard input — and it works like a charm. Below is my setup at home, with my MacBook Pro on the right, LG monitor in the middle, and iPad Pro on the left. I often see notifications pop up on iPad, and it has become a habit to tap them and begin typing responses using the on-screen keyboard, which we all know isn’t exactly the fastest way to enter text. Enter Typeeto.

The iPad and physical keyboard are just centimeters apart.

Typeeto allows you to use a Bluetooth connected keyboard with other devices connected by Bluetooth to your Mac. By using the common Bluetooth standard, Typeeto can be used with a whole slew of devices — meaning your Android phone, Apple TV, and a whole lot more. After you’ve paired each device with your Mac, you can select the input device by keyboard shortcut or via a dropdown menu in the menu bar. 

Typeeto sits quietly in the menu bar until you’re ready to pick a device.

In my case, I’ve paired my Mac and iPad. When I want to type something quickly on iPad, I tap “Command / Shift / K” to transfer the blinking cursor to the new device. It happens almost instantaneously, with very little lag. Once I’m done typing on the iPad, clicking anywhere on the Mac brings the keyboard cursor back to the computer. Easy peasy.

The search for a keyboard app began a few months ago when I realized how silly it was to type on an iPad screen with a physical keyboard sitting a few centimeters away. I found a couple of apps and tried two, but Typeeto was the best by far. That doesn’t mean it’s perfect, though; sometimes Bluetooth is finicky when setting it up. Once that’s done it should cause you no trouble, running quietly in the background waiting to be triggered.

This window appears on the Mac when it has passed the keyboard to another device. Dark mode available too.

The biggest downside to Typeeto is the price: US$19.99. I love the idea of paying software developers, who are too often shortchanged by consumers who will blow money on multiple coffees or drinks at the bar but have a hard time offering up even tiny amounts for apps that might have taken months to develop. But for a single-use, simple app, $19.99 seems a bit steep. I don’t regret purchasing it because I use it every day, but I suspect the price may be prohibitive to some.

If you have a Mac and iOS device on the same desk all day long, this is the perfect app to conveniently switch between them. Give it a shot… you can thank me later.

Cam Macmurchy

Hi! My name is Cam MacMurchy. I was born and raised in Canada and worked as a journalist before moving to China in 2004.

Today I work in Hong Kong as the Vice President of Corporate Communications of a listed company. I write about marketing, communications, and journalism, as well as technology and productivity, and anything else on my mind! I also occasionally contribute to 9to5Mac, one of the top Apple websites in the world, and run Executive Productivity. Contact me anytime.

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