The Wireless Mobile Mouse 4000 is Microsoft's latest travel mouse. It offers many of the same features as the Explorer Mini, but does so for $20 less. This $40 device also uses Bluetrack sensing technology, which lets you use it accurately across a variety of surfaces that a normal laser mouse just can't handle. Although less ergonomic, the 4000 fixes several of the problems we highlighted in the Explorer Mini, including the omission of the power-saving "off" switch and the right-handed design. Both of those features and more are included with the Wireless Mobile Mouse 4000, a very capable travel mouse worthy of our recommendation.
The 4000's plug-and-play hardware design makes it easy to pair it with a host computer. A small USB plug that Microsoft calls the "Nano Transceiver" pops out from its hiding spot in the undercarriage, which also houses the On/Off power switch, as well as a slot for an AA battery. While we normally prefer a rechargeable mouse, Microsoft claims the mouse will work flawlessly for up to 10 months on a single battery. The top of the mouse also houses a small red LED that alerts you when battery power is low. Microsoft also offers five pastel colors to choose from, including teal blue, berry pink, lime green, graphite, and white.
For software, Microsoft includes its Intellipoint 7 software for both PC and Mac. Here you'll find settings for button assignments, and scroll and click speed, as well as help files in an easy-to-use program. If you don't have the CD with you while you're traveling, you can still use the mouse with your computer's internal settings; no external drivers are required.
One of our major complaints with the Microsoft Explorer Mini Mouse was its right-handed-only design; the curves of the contours made it uncomfortable for lefties to use. Thankfully, Microsoft corrected this misstep in the 4000's symmetrical shape, making it universally easy to scroll and click the four buttons. In addition, the entire mouse is covered with a soft textured plastic for extra grip.