Kinesis Corp., , today introduced the first Macintosh-to-PC convertible ergonomic keyboards. Priced between $265 and $395, the "MPC" keyboards are available immediately from Kinesis and authorized resellers nationwide.
"The MPCs fill an interesting niche because there's a passion about our keyboards that's similar to that of Macintosh users," said Caprice Leinonen, vice president of Kinesis Corp. "Many of our committed customers use Macs at home and rely on the comfort of our keyboards, but are required to use a PC at the office. Now, our convertible keyboard provides the comfort and productivity of an ergonomic keyboard on either platform."
With the included cable adapter and a flip of a switch, Kinesis MPC keyboard users can move between Macintosh and PC systems and still use the same ergonomic keyboard -- maximizing their investment.
"We're pleased that Kinesis has recognized the Mac audience for their products," said Peter Hartsook, vice president of marketing for Apple Computer. "Apple is shipping between four and five million new Macintosh computers every year, and there are over 20 million active Macs users world-wide.
"Vendors who recognize and develop for this several million unit-per-year market are sure to be successful, especially when the incremental cost to address our customers is relatively low, and the market is hungry for outstanding new solutions."
Ergonomic Keyboard Technology: Features and Benefits
Kinesis keyboards were designed to reduce the strain and discomfort associated with conventional keyboard designs and, simultaneously, increase productivity. The symmetrical, sculpted shape is optimized to fit both the human body and the computer workstation, and is self-adjusting for large and small users.
All Kinesis keyboards feature separate concave keypads for each hand, which minimize wrist extension and simplify reaches to distant keys, straight column key layout which reflects natural finger motions; integral padded palm support, which saves effort by providing a soft resting place for palms; and low-force, tactile key switches, which are engineered to reduce effort and impact and to provide long life.
The "thumbs up" attitude created by the subtle center elevation is substantially more effective at reducing forearm muscle tension than other split keyboards like the Microsoft Natural, because it reallocates workload from weaker, overused little fingers to stronger thumbs. Its smaller width compared to other split keyboards improves positioning of the mouse, and provides ample choices in locating the popular touchpad-style pointing devices.
The Kinesis design has been shown in independent laboratory studies to offer better ergonomics than fully adjustable split keyboards costing two to three times as much.
Essential MPC and Professional MPC
The Essential MPC offers Kinesis' patented comfort and productivity, and, although shipped as non-programmable, can be upgraded to support on-board programming. The Professional MPC includes advanced, on-board macros programmability, a foot switch and Windows-compatible keyboard Keyware software. Kinesis Keyware graphical software (Windows 3.1/95 compatible) allows uploading and downloading to the keyboard memory, saving keyboard personalities as computer files.
Keyware allows mouse-driven, on-screen keyboard programming and encourages multiple user settings. MPCs are also available with QWERTY/DVORAK layouts, which allow immediate layout switching.
Kinesis keyboards are compatible with systems using Macintosh or PC compatible keyboards, most X terminals, newer workstations from SGI, HP, IBM and DEC, as well as newer mainframe terminals designed to accept PC and PS compatible keyboards.
All models are available either programmable or non-programmable. Each keyboard is upgradable and carries a lifetime limited warranty. The Essential MPC and the Professional MPC, priced at $265.00 and $395.00, are available directly from Kinesis or through US resellers.
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