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It’s not much of a bold assertion to claim that Apple makes the best notebook keyboards around, so it makes sense that MacBook owners would want to protect those ebony Chiclets from harm. NewerTech has been making keyboard prophylactics longer than anyone, and has now added the latest and greatest Retina-powered MacBook Pro to its lineup.
The NuGuard Keyboard Cover is a protective silicone skin customized to specific MacBook models — I tested the newest, custom-tailored for the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display. The skin isn’t just a thin piece of silicone molded to the Retina Mac’s keyboard — it’s also been colored to match the look and feel of that machine, with black keys faithfully silkscreened with white letters, numbers, and symbols to match. (Other MacBook Pro models also come in white, red and pink.) Surrounding each black key is clear silicone that fits snugly into the recessed keyboard area of the MacBook Pro. In the right lighting, it’s almost hard to see the NuGuard in place without getting close up.
Using the NuGuard, however, is less impressive. Even with clean, dry hands, I found the silicone skin frequently hard to type on, causing my accuracy to go out the window. Worse yet, the NuGuard keys tend to be slightly gummy, so occasional quick keystrokes would cause the skin to lift up slightly, making it more obtrusive. Maybe I could get used to it with more time, but I prefer the slick, plastic “au naturel” feeling of Apple’s keyboard.
That said, there’s still merit to this accessory. I often use my MacBook Pro with a Thunderbolt Display and external keyboard, so the Mac’s built-in keyboard sits idle, a perfect target for dust and pet hair. The NuGuard is a perfect way to keep these nuisances at bay. Heavy typists will also find the NuGuard keeps the keys looking wear-free and pristine. Plus, the NuGuard is easy to clean: rinse it under water, pat dry with a towel, then air dry the rest of the way, and it’s as good as new. Should the keyboard cover ever fail on you, NewerTech also includes a one-year warranty.
The bottom line. NewerTech’s NuGuard Keyboard Cover is an affordable way to keep accidents and airborne objects from ruining your MacBook Pro with Retina Display.
NuGuard Keyboard Cover for MacBook Pro with Retina Display
MacBook Pro with Retina Display
Perfectly molded to the MacBook Pro with Retina Display keyboard. Allows most backlighting to shine through. Easy to clean. Generous replacement warranty.
Silicone skin hampers typing accuracy for those who prefer plastic keys. Comes loose too easily during fast typing. Only available in black.