Touch-enabled mice clash in three-way showdown

Touch-based input devices are pretty close to ubiquitous these days. Notebooks have touchpads right below their keyboards, and just about every smartphone and tablet has touch capability embedded in its screen. Apple’s even gone so far as to release an appropriately Magical touchpad for desktops.

The next frontier for touch-based input appears to be mice. Microsoft has the Arc Touch mouse, of course, but it’s not the only one in the game. Mad Catz and Speedlink also make touch-based alternatives, and TechSpot has rounded up all three to see how they fare.

All of the mice are small wireless designs clearly intended for use with notebooks. Interestingly, there’s quite a bit of variety in how each manufacturer has implemented touch functionality. The Mad Catz Eclipse has a small touch area with two-axis scrolling and gesture support. Speedlink’s design turns the entire mouse surface into a touchpad, providing plenty of room for gestures but little comfort for one’s hand. The touch functionality built into Microsoft’s Arc Touch mouse seems to be the most limited of the bunch, although its “touchstrip” does provide a measure of tactile feedback.

None of the three look polished enough for me to take the plunge just yet, but I do quite like the idea of a desktop mouse with built-in gesture support. Such a mouse probably wouldn’t be ideal for games, but it could be great for desktop users who have grown accustomed using gestures on their notebooks. Going the Magic route with a giant desktop touchpad that loses the pointer precision offered by a mouse feels like one step too far, however.

Comments closed
    • ApockofFork
    • 9 years ago

    Still waiting for the microsoft touch mouse that actually competes with the magic mouse.

    [url<]http://www.amazon.com/Microsoft-3KJ-00001-Touch-Mouse/dp/B004HYGU18[/url<] Looks like my ideal mouse. A full touch surface but still clicky buttons and a thumb touch area. Not to mention it seems to come with a windows version of expose.

    • funko
    • 9 years ago

    So, I need to wait for the next Arc Touch MS Mouse that has thumb buttons. boo.

      • Corrado
      • 9 years ago

      Why companies don’t include at least a thumb back button on every mouse but bare basics is beyond me. Why do I need to go 4 steps up to get a proper thumb button?

    • ssidbroadcast
    • 9 years ago

    Microsoft, release your pressure-sensitive keyboard already. I know you have it. I know it works. Sheesh.

      • dpaus
      • 9 years ago

      Is that the one that automatically puts your text in [b<]BOLD CAPS[/b<] when you bang really hard on it?

        • ssidbroadcast
        • 9 years ago

        Yeah, but that was a custom IM-client tech demo. There’s other uses for it.

          • BobbinThreadbare
          • 9 years ago

          That would be awesome for games.

    • dpaus
    • 9 years ago

    You know, I thought this story was going to be about Something Completely Different….

      • sweatshopking
      • 9 years ago

      You know, dpaus, i think you complain about me because you’re SECRETLY jealous. seriously though. you’ve probably got more first posts than me in the last few weeks, and are starting to even post MORE total.

        • dpaus
        • 9 years ago

        Fair warning: if you offer to give me a hug, I’ll break your mouse finger!

          • sweatshopking
          • 9 years ago

          what about a smooch! we can hold hands and meditate! that should resolve any conflicts!

            • dpaus
            • 9 years ago

            You know, the opportunity to squeeze your hand after I’ve broken your mouse finger might just be worth it….

            • sweatshopking
            • 9 years ago

            Sounds like a plan then! i’m not sure what you’ve got against my mouse finger, as it seems you mostly hate my typings, which i can do with any finger, or even my nose. we should just stick to soft loving touches i think, my dear!

            • dpaus
            • 9 years ago

            I swear; it never occured to me that you do your typing with your nose – knowing that, so many other things suddenly make sense!

            As to your mouse finger, it’s not personal, it’s just business. It’s your mouse finger that clicks on the ‘Submit reply’ button on all your ‘frist psots!!!’ (and like I said, now that I know how you type…)

            • sweatshopking
            • 9 years ago

            well, I would reply that i’ve typed “first post” maybe once in the past 2 weeks; and that more often then not, you’re the first poster. I think you should look at that little finger in front of you right now, and think about that one. it’s your REAL enemy.

            • dpaus
            • 9 years ago

            [i<]This[/i<] finger? (you don't even need to see me...) It's usually a sign that I'm stuck at work, and waiting for a bad case of BrainLock to clear. As to why I was picking on you, meh, you're an easy target. Yeah, I know you've reformed your evil ways, but as Katherine the Great said in relation to horses....

            • sweatshopking
            • 9 years ago

            what DID she say about horses. TBH, i don’t know. google was no help either. You know she did die of a stroke, and never had intercourse with them. As for reformed my evil ways, people keep saying that, but i haven’t changed a thing! maybe you’re just all starting to have a bit of a crush…. 🙂 don’t worry, it’s mutual!

            • SHOES
            • 9 years ago

            Holy love affair batman, you two should get a chat room!

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