Okay, I'm really digging this full-szied bluetooth keyboard for my Powerbook. So much so, that I'm tempted to buy a second one to leave at work. But having a larger keyboard keeps my hands uncomfortably far from the touch pad.

Anyone got a recommendation for a bluetooth mouse that has more than one button (sorry, Apple) and works well with a Powerbook? I'll probably use it left-handed about half the time, so I'd prefer one that is not shaped for right-handed folks.

Posted by jzawodn at December 08, 2004 09:27 PM

Reader Comments
# Chris Newman said:

Glad to hear you're diggin' the keyboard - I presume it's the one you bought from me? I was using it with the Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer for Bluetooth. That mouse is definitely not conducive for left-hand use so I don't think it fits your needs, but it is a great mouse and despite it's system requirements, it worked right out the box with my PowerBook (didn't need to use the included msft Bluetooth receiver). In fact, I set each of the thumb buttons to trigger Expose (F9 and F11) and I've become so dependent on that, I'm not sure how I survive without it all day using Windows at work!

I do have one gripe though, and I suspect it is happens with bluetooth mice from any manufacturer… the pointing precision doesn’t feel on par with a corded mouse. Apple recently released a firmware update and I have noticed a slight improvement, however it is still lags too much not to be frustrating in applications like Photoshop. It is fine for casual use like web surfing, checking email, etc.

on December 8, 2004 10:31 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Chris: Yup, that's the keyboard. I just recently started using it again at home.

on December 8, 2004 10:40 PM
# Rob said:

I have the Logitech MX900 that I use with my 15" powerbook. I have the included Bluetooth receiver sitting off to the side as it is also the charger (comes with NiMH AA batteries). Like the MS mouse mentioned previously, this one is not condusive to being used with the left hand.

Mac Mice has a 2-button + wheel BT mouse - same form-factor as the Apple Mouse. I haven't used one so I can't comment on how it works.

on December 8, 2004 11:24 PM
# Justin Blanton said:

Jeremy, I've gone through two Bluetooth mice already, and actually, my third should be here later today. The first was the Microsoft Bluetooth Intellimouse, which I complained about on my weblog a while back. I currently have a Logitech MX900, which works fine, but doesn't have an on/off switch. The mouse that should arrive today is the new IOGEAR Bluetooth Mini Mouse which not only has an on/off switch, but can also be recharged through the Bluetooth cable that plugs directly into the mouse (no cradle).

on December 9, 2004 12:23 AM
# Matt said:

The Logitech MX900 works well for me, too. I use it with the built-in Bluetooth on my 12" PowerBook.

on December 9, 2004 04:01 AM
# David Magda said:

If you want something simply and that would go with the look of the PB there's The Mouse BT (yes, that's what it's called). A review of it is available. Google search for it.

on December 9, 2004 04:29 AM
# Rand Wacker said:

Gizmodo pointed me at a new set of BT devices from http://www.thinkoutside.com/, and the mouse looks like it would meet your requirements. I'm just waiting for the price to come down, as $80 seems a little steep for a pointing device. :)

on December 9, 2004 07:40 AM
# d said:

Sucks that you can't use the MX900 Jeremy (never knew you were a lefty?)..its a fairly good mouse. Had it for several weeks before a friend borrowed it, and got me to buy a MX510.

I had like one recommendation for another mouse before I bought the MX900..the Kensington Pilot:



Not a lot of BT mice out there that are that good compared to their corded counterparts..but I guess you can try to get what you can.

on December 9, 2004 08:21 AM
# Goetz said:

Hi Jeremy,

I'm using a Bluetake or Radtech BT 500 mouse. It has a on/off switch, three buttons and a scroll wheel. But it is small, so it might not be appropriate for all-day use. Check their website at http://www.radtech.us for a size comparison.


on December 9, 2004 10:10 AM
# Chris Dollmont said:

I use and love the Kensington Pilot Mouse Bluetooth. It's bilaterally symetrical, so left handed use shouldn't be a problem. Also, Kensington has the best customer support I've ever dealt with--a definite plus.


on December 9, 2004 01:48 PM
# Sam Pullara said:

Personally, I've mostly stopped using external keyboards and mice for my powerbook after using Sidetrack. It's so much more efficient for most things that I just can't get away from it. When I do need a really accurate pointing device for the Powerbook I either plugin a MS Intellimouse Optical or use Apple's Bluetooth Mouse which works great.

on December 9, 2004 03:50 PM
# Aaron Huslage said:

I Use the Kensington Pilot Mouse Bluetooth as well. It's really nice, and it uses AA batteries which is great when you're on the road (a pair lasts me about 2 months).

The only problem is that there's not off switch, so you need to pull one of the batteries if you're going to throw it in your bag (any button press turns it on). Not a big deal for me, but some people have panned the mouse for this.

on December 9, 2004 04:33 PM
# David Berliind said:

Jeremy, I wrote a response to this over on ZDNet and used your trackback link. For some reason, it didn't work. The response is at http://blogs.zdnet.com/BTL/index.php?p=835, but here's the full text (it's missing some links that didn't come over with the cut n paste:

Yahoo blogger Jeremy Zawodny is seeking a Bluetooth-based mouse and I've been meaning to talk about my experience for a long time. Such a device, by the way, would make an excellent Christmas gift for your favorite techie. Jeremy uses an Apple PowerBook. As it turns out, I'm running Microsoft's Bluetooth keyboard and mouse (Microsoft calls it the Wireless Optical Desktop [WOD]) with my PowerBook G4. When setting WOD up, the PowerBook not only automatically detected the mouse and keyboard, it also knows to use the Windows button on the keyboard as the "command" button for Mac OS X. Even though I haven't figured out how to program the keyboard's other special buttons (eg: the Media Player controls), I love it. But I also have two small complaints and I'm not sure that either of them are unique to the Microsoft gear.

First, the mouse pointer is sometimes slow to respond when the mouse is coming out of its hibernation mode (when you haven't moved it for a while) and I don't believe you can configure the mouse to not hibernate (or the AA batteries would drain in a day). Admittedly, I can live with this. You're never going to get the performance of a wired mouse out of a wireless one.

Second, I've noticed a significant difference in processor utilization when using the wireless keyboard and mouse. The downside of this is the noisy fan in the PowerBook to cool down the stressed out processor. Jeremy has a more powerful processor than I do (I'm running the 12-inch 867 Mhz G4 and maxing out the memory at 640MB didn't help), so he might not have this problem.

One thing that is really cool is how the Bluetooth connection stays active, even when the PowerBook goes into standby mode. In other words, if the PowerBook is on standby, and the mouse is hibernating, a jiggle of the mouse still wakes the PowerBook up. (I just didn't expect this, given what I've seen over the years. Then again, it is Apple.) I also concur with one of Zawodny's readers who observed that the Microsoft Mouse is not for left handers. It is very much a righty mouse. What would really be cool is if the new Bluetooth-enabled BlackBerries had support for Bluetooth-based keyboards.

on December 10, 2004 04:43 AM
# Colby Thomson said:

My favorite bluetooth mouse for use with a laptop is the Anycom BTM-100.

- very small, attractive looking, symmetrical
- two button + scroll wheel
- on/off button (required for travel)
- comes with USB charger - can charge while using, or swap nimh AAA batteries

I bought them for all the guys at our startup.

on January 17, 2005 11:46 PM
# Graham Irwin said:

I had the Macally BTMouse Jr. which ate batteries and constantly disconnected. I just got an Anycom BTM-100, which I find less comfortable, but I like the on/off switch and the rechargeability. However, I have to pair it with my Powerbook EVERY TIME I wake the machine up - any tips?


on February 26, 2005 09:21 AM
# Tom Wiseman said:

Blueteeth mice
I use a MacMice The Mouse BT - bought after much searching - on a G4PB 15" 1GHz
whilst is is 'sort of' recognised by the pB, it isn't compatible - but does permit the usual mouse settings options
it is OK when the batteries are really fresh, but after their voltage drops below 1.4, its movement becomes very erratic - leaping about all over the screen - sometimes very slow and delayed, then a big leap - this behaviour is completely unrelated to speeds set in preferences - and is hopeless for any precise work - after several minutes use, it 'warms up' and is fine for a while, then goes into terminal decline.
We cope with this by using rechargeable ebatteries but as their max voltage is only 1.2/1.3V, it looses smooth action very quickly.
also it goes to sleep annoyingly often (can't imagine what battery life would be like if it didn't) and takes a lot of tapping and movement ot get it to re-awaken. When it is asleep, it won't waken the screen or powerbook itself - indeed, it is slow slow to wake up that we find we have to use the trackpad to give it a kick - so compatability with the pb is not perfect, as I said.
Its range of action is very short - no more than a foot or so - beyond this, action is too erratci to use.
So if you can cope with these drawbacks and have an infinite supply of fully charged batteries, it is neat, light and works well when it is happy....
otherwise - spend more and get a better one!

it has two buttons and a scroll wheel - the button microswitches are actuated by a split perspex 'shell' which covers the unit - this works well if you are very careful about keeping your fingers well apart and only pressing on the extreme edges of the shell, but casual use often gives conflicting results (eg context menu comes up on left clicking)
so whilst this itme is smart looking, not too dear, light and easy handle (as good as an apple corded mouse) and when it is alive, is good to use and does work, it is not as good and smoooth a machine as eg the old heavyweight wireless (non-bluetooth) USB Logitech unit we also use (whose heavy recharging cradle and transmitter rule it out for out of office use)

on February 26, 2005 11:21 AM
# Kade BP Hutchinson said:

Chris Newman -- you noted you'd set the thumb buttons to function for Expose -- how did you manage that? I don't see any way to configure this mouse's buttons ...
Did you install the MS software or something? (I haven't since my PB has BT builtin ...)


on November 14, 2005 09:58 PM
# Larry Stratton said:

Does anyone have any experience with the Logitech V270 BT mouse? Looks like it has many of my desired features but I can't find any user reviews.

on November 24, 2005 09:46 AM
# Al said:

Is there a way to share one Bluetooth mouse between two machines - one is a Laptop with embedded Bluetooth option and the other machine is just a regular desktop.


on March 16, 2006 01:58 PM
# Wys said:

Hi Al,

I think one of the advantages of bluetooth technology is you can easily pair it with various bluetooth device. So, sharing one bluetooth mouse to between two or more devices is possible, as long as they all have bluetooth connection.


on March 2, 2009 05:16 PM
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