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Product: Notebook Optical Mouse
Company: Microsoft
Estimated Street Price:
Review By: Robert Stein

One of the latest hardware devices coming out of Redmond isn’t for the average user - correction, the average Desktop PC user. That is right; Microsoft has just released the Microsoft Notebook Optical Mouse for its first attempt to release a hardware product specifically for laptop/notebook consumers. Using patented Optical Technology and sporting a creative and stylish design, Microsoft is trying to make a big impression with such a tiny mouse. Does the mouse live up to its promises? Read on to find out.

Setup & Installation 

The setup of this mouse is decisively simple; just plug the cord into a USB port and you are ready to go. It is worth it to note this mouse works with USB only and not PS/2 ports (it doesn't work even with the converter).  Likewise, since no IntelliPoint drivers are really needed (or included), the only system requirements are USB and therefore Windows 98 and up. You can of course download Microsoft’s IntelliPoint software free from their website. This mouse also supports some Macintosh platforms (see below).


This design of this mouse is superb. Sizing up at 3.5 inches long, 2 inches wide and 1 inch high; this mouse weighs only a few ounces. The mouse has a titanium finish and has semi opaque red plastic windows on each side (you can see some of the inner workings when the optical light is on). It features only two buttons and a wheel, so if you depend on a ton of programmable buttons and such this mouse is not for you. The wheel is transparent so it adds a nice effect with the light sensor. I also notice the scroll wheel “scrolls” much tighter than previous Microsoft mice which is also nice. The mouse fits perfectly in my laptop bag, which is important because regular size mice never fit nicely.

Microsoft designed the mouse to be ambidextrous, so both right and left handed users can use this mouse without any problem. The size makes this mouse easy to use for long periods of times, without irritating the wrist (something I particularly find important). Another nice though feature is the cord is thinner and shorter than usual, saving precious storage space in your laptop bag. If you have a Natural Desktop Pro keyboard or equivalent, you could even use one of the USB ports in there to use this mouse for your desktop PC.  

Let’s not forget the Optical Technology. The technology is now up to 6,000 frames per second and works smoothly on most surfaces. It has been broken-in well with previous mice, so you know you won’t have any problems.

Final Comments

How It Grades

Installation: 92%
Performance: 99%
Design: 99%
Price/Value: 90%
Overall: 95%

This mouse is perfect for the mobile user. The Microsoft Notebook Optical Mouse has a great design and is small enough to bring anywhere, and in combination with the Optical technology will work anywhere on anything, too. Even though it is a little more expensive as compared to the competition, the design itself is worth it and the price will surely drop in the future. For those of you who want the latest Microsoft hardware and are frequent laptop users I definitely recommend the Microsoft Notebook Optical Mouse.

Specs & Package
Overall Score 95%
Version Reviewed Notebook Optical Mouse
Release Date Out Now
The Good Points Optical Technology
The Bad Points Slightly More Expensive than Competition
Some users may want retractable cord
Similar Product Logitech Mini Optical Mouse ($29.95)
System Requirements Windows 98, Me, 2000, XP
USB Port
Mac OS 8.6 to 9.x or Mac OS 10.1 (OS X not supported)



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