Big input, small space

Having gotten used to the Zip-Linq mini-mouse with the retractable chord, I was worried that I wouldn’t feel equally happy with the two targus wireless mice I got for the two laptops here at home. After having unpacked them both and plugged them in, I can say with some amount of satisfaction that both products stack up well to the Zip-Linq retractable.

The Zip-Linq is really tiny if you have normal-sized hands. I have fairly long fingers, so I have to close my hand into a somewhat tighter “claw” to be able to use it. But it has a good grip once you figure it out, and the retractable chord makes it ideal for laptops.

The black and silver “bubble” wireless mouse from Targus (#AMW07EU) has roughly the same physical footprint as the Zip-Linq retractable mouse. It comes with a “cute” carrying pouch (soon we’ll need a backpack for all of these pouches), a chord, and the transmitter part (the “dongle”), which installs into an USB slot on your computer. One really cool thing about this model is that it has a storage space for the USB dongle underneath the mouse. The accompanying chord is used to re-charge the batteries (and at the same time allowing you to use the mouse). It’s quite heavy for its size, which suits me just fine. There is no manual on/off switch, the mouse is turned off when the USB dongle is stowed. And that’s all there is to it.

The blue and silver wireless, also from Targus (#AMW0501EU), is slightly bigger than the above two mice, and both looks and feels more like a conventional mouse. It too features an USB transmitter or “dongle” that is inserted into an available USB slot on your computer. The dongle is slightly bigger than the one for the black and silver model; apparently the designer has taken this into consideration and made it possible to fold the dongle to appear more in-line with the computer. This model also features a chord to re-charge the batteries while allowing for continued use. Unlike the black and silver model, this one features an on/off switch underneath the mouse. The only minor hitch with this model is that it was a bit more complicated to open the battery compartment.

Given the above three models, I would recommend all of them with the black and silver “bubble” coming out slightly on top; mainly because of its keep-it-simple-stupid approach and the clever little storage facility for the dongle. I don’t like two-part computer peripherals because one part always tends to get lost, but Targus is making the best available choice in my opinion. Regardless of which one you prefer, and there are of course many other “tiny mice”, there’s no excuse to keep that desktop mouse for your portable or crowded desk!

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