Between its VBS architecture, secure booting, and other borderline-paranoid features, Windows 10 is arguably one of the most secure operating systems of all time. It even makes a serious effort to get rid of passwords via Windows Hello, which allows you to sign in using either a facial, iris, or fingerprint scan. Simply put, it might be time to actually consider giving up on passwords, at least for your Windows logon. If you’re sold, but would prefer a fingerprint scan as opposed to using your laptop’s camera for the other options, the Microsoft Modern Keyboard with Fingerprint ID might make for an excellent new peripheral to add to your desk.
Equipped with a fingerprint scanner, the keyboard can quickly log you in with a brief scan of the finger, ensuring no one else other than you can get access to your workstation. We know, nefarious villains always have a way of circumventing biometrics in the movies, but, let’s be honest, your life is hardly exciting enough to be considered for a movie plot, so you’re probably safe.
The best part of the Microsoft Modern Keyboard with Fingerprint ID is the fact that it looks like any ordinary keyboard. Seriously, it looks completely identical to the Surface Keyboard the outfit has released previously. Heck, it’s so regular-looking that you won’t even know where the fingerprint scanner is even if you look for it, ensuring those unfamiliar with your system won’t even know where to place the fake finger they’re carrying. That’s because Microsoft cleverly integrated the scanner on the Windows key between the Alt and Ctrl keys, which doesn’t look any different from that on the biometrics-free Surface Keyboard that the outfit also sells.
While the design is undoubtedly minimalist and low-key, Microsoft doesn’t scrimp as far as the keyboard’s durability is concerned, as they threw in an aluminum frame to ensure it can withstand the rigors of daily use. We love the slim panel, too, which gives it a sleek and more refined aesthetic.
Designed for both wired and wireless use (albeit exclusively for Windows 10), the keyboard can either be plugged in using the bundled microUSB cable or used unplugged via a Bluetooth connection. That makes it suited for different work styles, whether you’re more comfortable with a tethered connection or you’re the sort who’d rather banish all cables from your desk, if at all possible.
Of course, plugging in the keyboard automatically charges the integrated battery, which, we’re assuming is housed inside the cylinder-shaped stand at the bottom. That battery, by the way, can last for up to four months of wireless use on a full charge, so you’ll only need to charge this thrice a year to get a full 354 days of untethered typing. Other features include a wireless range of 33 feet, a substantial weight of 14.6 ounces, and dimensions of 16.6 x 4.4 x 0.8 inches (length x width x height).
Available now, the Microsoft Modern Keyboard with Fingerprint ID is priced at $129.99.