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I have been searching off and on for several months trying to find a small 'raw' keyboard module for use in an enclosure. Other than a few Chinese sites that have little info and/or no option to buy one off's I have had no luck.

By 'raw' I mean a bare module, not a prepackaged bluetooth keyboard which are easy to come by. I am not entirely adverse to using one of the Chinese knockoffs either. My challenge is that I have been working on a very low volume, potetential saleable product and this is one of those missing components. I have considered springing  for the updated 4" 4D systems screens since they come with a Qwerty interface pre-programmed but they are expensive!

Has anyone run across something like this?
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Wade

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So you are talking about small full keyboards like blackberry or the like? Will you settle with multi tap?
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Really need qwerty.

This is the best I have found tongiht but there is virtually zero info except size (approx 7.5" x 3.5")

http://www.haskey.com.cn/en/product_show.asp?ProdNum=60&parentid=100&larseq=100

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Wade

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If you want a SMALL bluetooth keyboard with a touch pad, then look at this, Rii mini Bluetooth PC:
http://shop.mobileweb.ebay.com/searchresults;PdsSession=5165b8f613b0a47a1214e014fffe7558?kw=Mini+bluetooth+keyboard&cmd=SREF&fads=All&call=All&sort=BestMatch&mfs=GOCLK&acimp=0&isNewKw=true

http://ebay.com/searchresults;PdsSession=5165b8f613b0a47a1214e014fffe7558?kw=Mini+bluetooth+keyboard&cmd=SREF&fads=All&call=All&sort=BestMatch&mfs=GOCLK&acimp=0&isNewKw=true
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Created Libraries:
TFT_Extension, OneWireKeypad, SerialServo, (UPD)WiiClassicController, VWID

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This any good?

http://www.engadget.com/2012/09/10/ben-heck-fashions-a-pocket-computer-with-an-xbox-chatpad-and-ard/
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HazardsMind, I can find the bluetooth boards all day but that does not suit my purposes. If I were using the Rasberry Pi, then I would probably consider that route but I need something I can sell on a low volume basis (200+) and I can't resale a commercial product like that.

Lakes,

I saw that one and it is awesome but the same problem with not being able to sell. Also those Xbox controllers are expensive. One of the Bluetooth keyboards can be had off EBay for <$15.00 which would be a better starting point if I were to go that route.

I really need a raw module with spec sheet. The link I posted above is for a Windows style keyboard module that is 7.5" x 3.5" which would suit me okay even though I would rather have smaller. But there is zero info. Plus I can't buy the thousands they probably want just to talk to me.

This is a missed opportunity in the hobby electronics market.

I might consider going with a cheap knockoff 7" android tablet. One from China could probably be resold and would serve my purposes. Plus they can be had super cheap (<$50) and android to Arduino comms are relatively simple. Couple that with an embedded Bluetooth keyboard from China and I am in business. This would serve as a 'base station' with Arduino components that communicate back to it via wireless.

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Wade

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Cool! Program as you go! I like that concept. Makes me want to steal the office label maker and jam arduino in it. Full-size mini keyboards are not easy to find, which also happens to not be a part of a piece of popular electronics such as xbox. For price you need to find keyboards made in volume but for keyboards made in volume they aren't generic but are made for specific products. You're looking at a niche market.
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Fair enough but think about half the products sold on sites like Sparkfun. Is it not safe to say that they are niche market? The Arduino itself clearly sells enough that they can sell them through retail. But what about EL wire convertors? What about the parralax Ultrasonic range detectors? Or micro camera modules? These are all niche market items but readily available. There are generic keyboards being made and put into Chinese knockoffs all day. The product is out there and already being produced. All I'm saying is that this is missed opportunity in the hobby electronics market to provide a raw keyboard module with documentation.





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Wade

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Yes, hobby market is a niche. I sometimes recommend components to an electronics shop online. The usual response to my "why have you not carried this?!" was sparkfun is not carrying it so it must be not popular. Your need for full keyboard is not shared by most other members here so no wonder nobody is racing to fill this market yet. Say I got 100 such keyboard from a factory, how quickly can I sell, if you weren't interested?
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Quote
sparkfun is not carrying it so it must be not popular

And that is the sad truth.

But one more counter point, I think this is a case of the interest isn't there because the product isn't there. The cart before the horse, or the chicken and the egg dilemma. I look forward to Sparkfun's new product post every Friday because there is occasionally that thing they put on there that makes me wonder what I could do with it. I think this is one of those things.

So I have been digging a little more looking for a mini wired generic keyboard on alibaba with some limited luck.

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Luck,

Wade

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