The Wireless Mobile Mouse 4000 is Microsoft's latest travel mouse. It offers many of the same features as the Explorer Mini Mouse, but costs about £10 less. This £25 device also uses BlueTrack sensing technology, which lets you use it accurately on a variety of surfaces that a normal laser mouse can't handle. Although less ergonomic, the 4000 fixes several of the Mini's flaws, including the omission of a power-saving off switch and the right-hand-only design.
The 4000's plug-and-play hardware design makes it easy to pair it with a host computer. A small USB-powered wireless transceiver pops out from its hiding spot in the undercarriage, which also houses the power switch, as well as a slot for an AA battery. While we normally prefer rechargeable mice, 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 offers the mouse in five colours: blue, pink, green, black and white.
Microsoft includes its IntelliPoint 7 software for both PC and Mac. 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 travelling, you can still use the mouse with your computer's internal settings -- no external drivers are required.
One of our major complaints with the Mini was its right-hand-only design -- its contours made it uncomfortable for lefties to use. Thankfully, the 4000 is symmetrically shaped, making it equally easy for left-handed users to scroll and click the four buttons. The entire mouse is covered with soft textured plastic for extra grip.