IOGEAR Bluetooth Optical Mini Mouse

I was excited to get my hands on this little mouse – and I mean little! It’s the perfect size for my 3 year old son to use, and he loves that. It’s definitely for travel purposes – I don’t think I’d recommend it for regular day to day use or you’re sure to end up with carpal-tunnel before you know it. But in order to bring accurate news and reviews to our faithful readers, I’ve used it regularly for 2 weeks, sacrificing my personal health in the process.

The quality is very high, and with the included 2 AAA rechargeable batteries, it’s got a nice little heft to it. It’s really just enough to let you know you’re moving something around in your hand – not so much that you’ll notice its added weight in your laptop bag.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Bluetooth Pairing process, the Manual provides detailed instructions for both Windows and OS X installations. There’s no software included or necessary. I had mine paired and in use in about 2 minutes’ time. I had hoped to test it on both my Powerbook and a Windows PC, but none of my office’s Windows machines have Bluetooth installed.

The optical tracking can be a bit jumpy on shiny surfaces (which is mentioned in the manual). I’ve got a lacquered oak desk at home where I began testing it, and while it was bearable, I’d bring a mouse pad or have a non-reflective surface for extended periods of use. (The dull desk surface at my day office had no problems with the optical tracking.) For you spec nerds out there, it’s got 800 dpi resolution for superior tracking (on appropriate surfaces). It’s also able to function up to 66 feet from your computer, so it’s great for presentations, or even ‘remote’ controlling your system if you care to use it in such a fasion.

The mouse come with 2 rechargeable AAA batteries, as well as a USB cable for recharging it when the tracking gets sluggish. You can even use the mouse while it’s charging, but then that would defeat the purpose of the wireless Bluetooth connectivity then, wouldn’t it? Still, it’s nice to have options. After a few minutes of inactivity (I believe it’s about 15) the mouse will put itself to sleep and the connection with the computer will close. A little jiggle of the mouse and a few seconds later you’re back in business. Use the Off button when the mouse is not in use, and the batteries will last much longer. (In my regular use for about 2 weeks, I’ve not had to charge the batteries yet.)

I should also mention that the USB cable is the standard connection size, so it’s nice to have in my bag for whenever I may need to download photos from my digital camera.

You even get a nice silver, oversize egg-shaped and zippered carrying case for your mouse and the USB/charging cable. Great for protecting the device from all the other stuff that may be floating around in your laptop bag during transport. It’s actually large enough to comfortably fit the mouse, the USB cable, an iPod Shuffle, and the ear buds.

As I mentioned earlier, it is tiny – the dimensions are 1.5in wide, 3.25 in long, and 1.125in tall. IOGEAR’s product page states, “For Mobile and Graphics Professionals”. I agree with the Mobile part, but I don’t know that a Graphic Artist would want to use this tiny mouse all day long. I guess my hands are probably average in size, and after regular use for an hour there was a bit of fatigue to be felt. But to use on an infrequent basis while traveling, or at least moving around a lot with your laptop, this would be a good option to try out.

Being a former Windows user, I’m a right-click junkie, and I appreciate having a 3 button mouse at my disposal wherever I venture. The scroll wheel is especially crisp but not so stiff that it’s difficult to scroll without accidentally clicking the scroll button.

Overall, I’m pleased with the IOGEAR Bluetooth Optical Mini Mouse and I’m glad to have it in my bag whenever I’m out and about with my Powerbook. If you’re in the market for a portable mouse, and don’t mind the extremely small size, I’d highly recommend you check this product out before you look anywhere else.

Check it out on IOGEAR’s website, where it retails for $69.95.


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