Often we're willing to part with our hard earned cash for the latest and greatest tech gear and gadgetry, but far too many times we don't pony up the additional money to protect our tech. Shame on you if that describes you. Why spend over $2,000 on a new MacBook Pro only to fudge it up by spilling coffee on the Keyboard! Lucky for you, there are some pretty good (and inexpensive) solutions.
When I first saw STICARS keyboard covers, I was amused. I actually already had a keyboard cover on my MacBook. What amused me was the colorful, whimsical designs of these covers. But I couldn't deny the value of such an accessory. Anyone who has owned a laptop for a few years knows the annoying rattle of crumbs under keys and has perhaps even known the dread of a dead key due to damage from particulate under the keyboard.
Always Use Protection
I worked too many years in tech retail not to protect my investments (when you've been handed the remains of a cell phone that's been hit by a lawn mower in a Ziploc bag and asked if Warranty covers it, you've seen some things.)
I was always stunned that folks would spend hundreds on their gadgets and scoff at spending $20-$30 to protect them. I suppose folks who refuse to listen will pay their idiot tax later when they have to needlessly repurchase the same gear when they realize that neglect isn't covered by the manufacturer. Go figure.
An Ugly Problem
One reason why many folks don't buy accessories is simply that they look terrible. I've seen people turn down an ugly $5 protective case, and lay down $60 for a camouflage Otter Box because.. well, I live in Kentucky and here camouflage is cool. Our sense of style goes well beyond mere personal preference, it is a scarlet letter of our own personality.
These Things Do Get Noticed.
I was sent two different STICARS designs. One (a pretty blue dotted STICAR) I gave to my wife for her MacBook, the other is currently living on the keys of my own MacBook Pro. I've received probably a dozen compliments on the look of my computer since adding this stylish accessory (I am sporting a fire orange keyboard with a yellow peace symbol on it, since Camo wasn't in the review package. Darn.)
How It Stacks Up
I have to say, this isn't a bad little product! There is a slight adjustment period where the keys have to find their home inside the silicone walls of this molded product, but after that it feels nearly like OEM (but more rubbery).
Just today I was snacking and dropped something crumbly and salty on the face of my keyboard, and felt just fine about wiping it off without fear that it would dance like the devil in the pale moonlight on my logic board. Nice!
My only complaint is that the design of this keyboard blocks the back lighting of the keys on my MacBook pro. I don't have the ability to see my caps lock light, or the actual keys (although the back-lit outline is still visible). This could easily be fixed in future iterations, and won't impact regular Mac users who don't have the back-lit option.
It does fit snugly, and does not affect my ability to close my MacBook Pro (or my wife's MacBook). The keyboards on these computers are standard, so it will work will all Mac laptops and there is a promise of a PC version for you less hip laptoppers very soon.
The Final Say
For a recommended $15.99 I'd say it's a small investment in lengthening the life of your MacBook well beyond the 2 years that Apple Care will fix what ails you. Plus, they make your MacBook look cooler, who knew that was possible? Get yours here.