Microsoft’s new keyboard banishes passwords with a built-in fingerprint sensor

Microsoft has launched another keyboard (with a partner mouse) which is a spin on the Surface Keyboard that emerged last fall, although this variant adds a very nifty extra: a fingerprint sensor.

Microsoft calls this new peripheral the Modern Keyboard, dropping the Surface branding, and making it more suitable for a wider range of devices because it offers a wired connection as well as wireless connectivity (the Surface Keyboard was Bluetooth only).

It’s essentially the same as the Surface Keyboard, though, and benefits from a slim profile with an aluminum chassis. The big change is the addition of a fingerprint sensor for logging into Windows 10 via Windows Hello, meaning no more typing in passwords.

The fingerprint sensor is ‘hidden’ as Microsoft puts it, meaning that it’s disguised as a plain key (next to the Alt key on the right-hand side).

Pricey proposition

The keyboard requires a pair of AAA batteries for wireless operation which should give you 12 months of battery life. And if you thought the Surface Keyboard was expensive at $100 (around £80, AU$130) – as we noted in our review – then Microsoft’s Modern Keyboard ups the ante even further costing $130 (around £100, AU$170). 

That fingerprint sensor was never going to come for free, though. Even so, it’s a fairly pricey proposition as a peripheral.

As mentioned, the Modern Keyboard also comes with a partner Modern Mouse (naturally), but this is simply a rebranded Surface Mouse, with no differences at all. The mouse will set you back $50 (around £40, AU$65).

Via: MS Power User

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).