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Review: Microsoft Touch Mouse

Review: Microsoft Touch Mouse

The good: It's easy to install, easy to use and works on a ton of surfaces.

The bad: It's on the hefty side and the vertical scrolling feature could use further polishing.

Microsoft's wireless touch mouse is a smooth expanse of black plastic – there are no defined click buttons and no scroll wheel.

I was initially taken aback to realise this wasn't a Bluetooth mouse. Rather, it comes with a little wireless doodacky that plugs into your USB port - awkward, perhaps, but at least storage is simple, as it can be removed and stashed into the bottom of the mouse when not in use.

Designed to work best with Windows 7, setup is as simple as can be. Wait for the software to install itself, and you're away.

The multitude of gestures it recognises, however, dictates more of a learning curve. As well as one-finger scrolling in all directions, you can swipe your thumb left or right on either side to navigate forward and backward through webpages and slideshows. Then there's the Windows 7-only commands; two fingers swiped in either direction snap the window to the side to fill up half of the screen. It also recognises three-finger movements, used to pull up all the windows on your desktop and display them side by side, or to minimise them.

The textured surface corresponds to the touch sensor, although the device itself is a tad bulky with two AA batteries adding to the weight. The mouse tracked nicely on wood, glass and even carpet. In terms of responsiveness, the only hiccup was that scrolling was a tad jerky at times on my one-year-old Compaq.

Microsoft Touch Mouse, $109