Not content with simply controlling the software side of your PC experience, Microsoft also wants to be your peripheral provider of choice, offering a variety of mice and keyboards. One of three new laptop mouse models, the $49 Microsoft Wireless Notebook Laser Mouse 7000 is a bit larger than your usual laptop mouse, but it also offers desktop mouse features such as a four-way scroll wheel and two thumb buttons.
A hair over 4 inches long and 2.3 inches wide, this is not a mouse that's going to slide into your shirt pocket easily, like the thin Kensington Ci75m. It will have trouble fitting into many of the smaller pockets in your laptop case, but the fuller feel makes it easy to use for extended periods of time.
A typical USB transceiver provides the connection, and power is supplied by one AA battery (included in the package). There's no on/off switch on the bottom of the mouse, but snapping the transceiver into its slot on the mouse's base automatically turns the mouse off. Unfortunately, the transceiver doesn't sit flush with the bottom of the mouse when snapped in there, which makes it even harder to store.
Unlike many of the other laptop mice we've seen, this model includes welcome side buttons for your thumb on the left and right sides, which most Web browsers recognize as the universal command for going back a page. You also get a feature almost never found in portable mice, a four-way scroll wheel, for zipping side-to-side in wide documents or Web pages. Those extras, plus the slightly larger footprint, make for an interesting hybrid of desktop and laptop mouse features, as long as you don't mind toting it around.