Gear Review: KeySmart Pro

Traditional keyrings and keychains have their appeal and are still useful, but they are becoming more and more obsolete as technology continues to advance and become increasingly portable. The days of bulky bulges of keys jingling around in your pocket, poking you in the leg, and possibly scratching up your smartphone and/or wallet, are now over, thanks to KeySmart. With this handy device, you can fit all of your keys into a compact, sleek package you’ll barely even notice is in your pocket.

KeySmart is like the Swiss Army Knife of key organizers. It has a form factor similar to that of a pocket knife, but it comes apart so you can add and arrange your own personal keys to meet your needs. It can hold up to 10 keys according to the packaging (unfortunately I don’t have that many keys to test full capacity, but I was able to comfortably fit in two house keys, the bottle opener add-on, and a USB flashdrive key that takes up the space of two keys in thickness), with expansion packs available for increasing the capacity. Accessories can also be added, such as the aforementioned bottle opener, which comes included right out of the box, as well as things like a screwdriver, pliers, golf divot tool, and yes, even a folding knife.

The KeySmart comes assembled out of the box, but taking it apart and adding your desired key loadout is very simple. You just unscrew the two top screws attaching the top plate with the bottom plate. Then slot your keys onto the bottom posts in the desired arrangement, put the top plate back on, and tighten the screws. Spacing washers are also included, which are helpful for filling in gaps, balancing out keys of uneven thickness, or just as spacers between keys. It’s not necessary to put a spacer between keys, but I found that separating each key with a spacer provided a cleaner fit and smoother action when rotating a key out.

Unique to the Pro model is a rechargeable battery, charged via an included micro-USB cable, which powers an onboard LED flashlight as well as compatibility with the Tile app. Using Bluetooth, the KeySmart Pro can be synched with Tile so that you can easily locate your misplaced keys from your smartphone, or double-tap the Tile button on the KeySmart to locate your misplaced phone by causing it to ring.

As for the LED, it’s not bright enough to necessarily use as a true flashlight to light up a dark room or create a visible pathway outside in the dark at night, but pointing from the tip of the KeySmart, it is angled perfectly to provide more than enough illumination so you can see from your key to a doorknob or whatever else you may be unlocking in the dark. If you aren’t in a position to keep the on button held down, giving it a quick double-tap makes the light stay on automatically for 10 seconds before shutting back off.

One thing about the flashlight that could be improved would be to have a more pronounced button, or maybe even a little nub in the center to provide needed textural contrast. The existing button is ever so slightly raised, but not enough that you can tell a difference when sliding your finger over it. As is, it can be hard to locate the button by feel alone. By comparison, the Tile button directly below is recessed into the top plate, so you do get the necessary contrast to find it with your thumb without looking.

Battery life is inconsistently represented. The box says that it’s supposed to hold charge up to three months while the website says the charge is good for 45 days. In my experience, the latter is more accurate than the former. One day after only a month of testing, I took the KeySmart out of my pocket, went to use the light, and discovered that the battery was already out of juice. And I really hadn’t used the light very many times during that period.

KeySmart Pro uses stainless hardware with plates constructed out of what feels like a lightweight type of plastic. Durability doesn’t appear to be a concern at all from my testing. After regular daily use for a couple months now, my KeySmart still looks pretty much brand new. The white casing hasn’t even started showing any signs of discoloring. Of course I haven’t abused it, but one time I did fumble it out of my pocket onto a hard tile floor. It landed with a horrible bang, and I fully expected to bend over and retrieve it with a cracked plate or at the very least a scratch or blemish. However, I’m happy to say I recovered it without a scratch.

At $50, the KeySmart Pro is quite pricey for a key organizer, but if you’re afflicted with forgetful key syndrome and/or regularly find yourself in situations where you’re unlocking things in the dark and need a guiding light always at hand, the expense may just be worth it. If the technological bells and whistles of the Pro model aren’t a need, KeySmart is available in a variety of other models that are more affordable.

Buy From: GetKeySmart.com and Amazon.com for $49.99.

Disclosure: A KeySmart Pro was provided to VGBlogger.com for review consideration.

About the Author

Matt Litten is the full-time editor and owner of VGBlogger.com. He is responsible for maintaining the day to day operation of the site, editing all staff content before it is published, and contributing regular news, reviews, previews and other articles. Matt landed his first gig in the video game review business writing for the now-defunct website BonusStage.com. After the sad and untimely close of BonusStage, the former staff went on to found VGBlogger.com. After a short stint as US Site Manager for AceGamez, Matt assumed full ownership over VGBlogger, and to this day he is dedicated to making it one of the top video game blogs in all the blogosphere. Matt is a fair-minded reviewer and lover of games of all platforms and types, big or small, hyped or niche, big-budget or indie. But that doesn't mean he will let poor games slide without a good thrashing when necessary!