Microsoft’s new wireless Touch Mouse is a strangely shaped rodent. It looks absolutely stunning with a sleek black arc of a body that is peppered with tiny brown crosses and dots. It has some clever, if idiosyncratic features which, as its name suggests, are all about finger touch.
A mouse you can sweep
Just over half of the body of the Microsoft Touch Mouse is peppered with those crosses and dots, and this area contains touch sensitive sensors. That means you sweep fingers around the surface of the mouse to achieve results.
There are left and right buttons too, but you’d never know it to look at the mouse whose body is a single plastic sheet. Press where you’d expect left and right mouse buttons to be, though, and the desired effect is achieved.
Installation is a breeze. When you plug the wireless dongle into a USB port, driver download begins and after a short wait the mouse is installed. Now you can start sweeping. A simple up and down motion scrolls vertically, with faster finger sweeps causing faster scrolls.
But that simple scrolling action is just the start. The Microsoft Touch Mouse supports multitouch and two finger sweeping can be used to maximise and minimise windows as well as to snap and unsnap them. Three finger sweeping can be used to open all windows on a forwards sweep or show the desktop on a backward sweep. Finally, you can use a thumb action to progress through application windows.
- Easy to install, easy to use and adds great new functionality.
- A bit on the pricey side.
The Microsoft Touch Mouse takes a bit of getting used to, and we aren't sure we'd want to use it all the time. But it is a great accompaniment to laptop computing in particular, where it adds oodles of functionality to the standard touchpad.