The Keyport Slide bills itself as the “ultimate keychain alternative”, but it’s had a rocky history. When it was first released several years ago, the Keyport Slide cost $295, users had to physically mail in their keys, and some customers ended up waiting three years to get their product. Not exactly what we would call enticing.
The good news is—all that has changed.
First off, the ordering process has been streamlined significantly. I received my Keyport Slide less than a week after ordering. All I needed to do to get the custom key blanks was to lay down my current keys on the PDF chart pictured above (covering the front teeth of the keys with tape for security), take some pictures, then email them off to Keyport.
Once I received the Keyport unit and the “blades”, I took them to my local Lowes to have duplicates made (he even cut them for free, which was awesome). For me, the process was very simple and the keys worked in all of my locks. However, I’ve heard that some locksmiths might be a little apprehensive about cutting someone else’s blanks—particularly ones with little plastic nubs on the top as opposed to a traditional key handle. So keep that in mind and make sure to shop around if necessary.
After the keys were made and tested, assembling the Keyport was also a fairly straightforward process. My particular Keyport included the three keys I had made, a 4GB USB flash drive, an LED light and a bottle opener. To assemble, I inserted the included spring pins into each blade, popped off the back of the Keyport, pressed down on the pin and slid the blades in. The only problem was deciding what the best port for each blade would be. After going through this process I can say that it is probably a good idea to keep your car and house keys nearer to the center of the Keyport to give it more leverage when turning.
Either way, the Keyport seems to be more than durable enough to handle the torque necessary for most applications. Still, there are a few issues to keep in mind:
- Turning the Keyport Slide in a lock is not unlike trying to open a door with a screwdriver, which takes a little getting used to.
- Keyports can only accomodate a maximum of six keys, which means that you’ll have to add and remove keyblades as the situation warrants. (Additional blades can be purchased for $5 each).
- If you have a key with a built-in security chip, you’ll have to make extra sure that it is compatible before ordering. In this case you will actually have to mail Keyport a copy of the key.
- Popping off the back and removing the blades can be a bit tricky since the release buttons are very small.
Overall, I’ve found using the Keyport Slide to be far superior than carrying around a bulky, noisy keychain. It’s literally like a Swiss Army knife for your keys. Just press on the appropriate button and slide your key or accessory out. There are also lanyards you can buy to make carrying the Keyport more convenient, but it would have been nice if it could be attached to a standard keyring for security and car fobs.
In the end though it’s worth ponying up $80 for—until we all start unlocking everything with our phones that is.
Product Page ($80)