Iogear Wireless RF Keyboard/Optical Mouse Combo
The $70 Iogear Wireless RF Keyboard/Optical Mouse Combo looks like a promising desktop set. The sleek, lightweight keyboard is loaded with shortcut and programmable-function keys; the rechargeable mouse uses a hand-soothing 800dpi sensor; and the whole kit is unhampered by wires. But by the end of our three-day testing period, we were ready to chuck it in favor of our old wired combo.
Offense number one: while the shortcut and programmable-function keys are convenient for accessing e-mail and multimedia apps, the keyboard itself needs an overhaul. The keys sit too close together and were often unresponsive. We had to repeat the simplest keystrokes, such as Ctrl+V, several times before the keyboard processed them. On the second day of our testing period, we came in to find that sometime during the night, the keyboard had stopped talking to the USB receiver. We eventually got it working again by repeating the setup instructions and switching back and forth between the two channels on the keyboard. We acknowledge that interference frequently mucks with wireless devices, but we had no similar problems with other recently reviewed wireless input devices, making the Iogear's issues seem inexcusable. What if we had come in to work with five minutes to finish a presentation for an 8 a.m. meeting?
The situation got worse with further use. After just one day, the mouse started to emit very loud bleeps, to the annoyance of our cubemates. Turns out the mouse had run out of juice, even though we followed the requisite two-hour precharging rule and left the guy in the cradle overnight. There isn't a low-battery indicator on the mouse, the charger, or the keyboard, so we were left in the lurch yet again and happily reverted to our wired USB standby.