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HP Shipping a Mouse That Connects Using Wi-Fi

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 33 comments

Wireless mice are pretty handy, but not everyone can utilize them the same way. Some run off Bluetooth, which requires for the computer to have Bluetooth hardware – not a standard part. An alternative is for an external USB dongle that adds a Bluetooth or RF receiver.

HP is now selling a third option that uses a Wi-Fi connection, which these days is standard on laptops, to add a wireless mouse on a Windows 7 system without the requirement of Bluetooth or use of any additional dongles.

We surmise that the HP Wi-Fi mobile mouse connects to the Windows 7 machine's Wi-Fi hardware directly through an ad hoc connection. This should not upset the computer's ability to connect to an access point for internet connectivity.

HP boasts that its Wi-Fi mouse has up to nine months of battery life from two AA batteries. It is now selling for $49.99.

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  • 0 Hide
    tical2399 , June 20, 2011 12:08 PM
    I wonder how much this would effect the battery of the laptop.
  • 0 Hide
    steelbox , June 20, 2011 12:14 PM
    Can it be a door for hacker invasion? Since it utilizes wireless it will connect with the wireless network card, right?
  • 3 Hide
    erichoyt , June 20, 2011 12:14 PM
    This is pretty cool....it's one less piece of hardware to keep track of at the minimum.

    Does anyone know why it has taken so long for a wi-fi mouse to be released? I assume the problems that were previously preventing this are fixed - or are there potential pitfalls?
  • -3 Hide
    N.Broekhuijsen , June 20, 2011 1:25 PM
    I like the idea of one less piece of hardware, but as it looks this will be a bigger pain:
    - price: $50 is a lot for a mouse like that I see in the picture
    - need 2 wifi adapters? 1 adapter can only connect to one device, not two, correct me if im wrong
    - desktops: I refuse to put wi-fi in desktops, wires so much better and it's stationary anyways...
    - compatibility: probably need to install a bunch of drivers and configure... much rather just have plug and play.
    - performance: I doubt its gonna be low latency, but I could be wrong.

    so yeah.... It's a nice concept, but I can't see it getting very far
  • -1 Hide
    lamorpa , June 20, 2011 1:25 PM
    Wow. The picture is amazing. It looks just like a mouse!
  • 4 Hide
    arakis , June 20, 2011 1:44 PM
    I just noticed a virutal wireless adapter on a 7 laptop one of my users had. They said they didn't do anything to add it, so after a little googling I found out about something pretty cool Microsoft made to make this device possible. They call it MultiNet and it is already in Win7 and will appear after a driver update for your wifi adapter. It is a virtualization approach that allows your adapter to function in two contexts at once. You can connect to an AP, then another AP or host ad-hoc connections for sharing or in this case device connections. Really smart to see such an established idea as virtualized networking turned into such a game changer. Wonder when Apple will claim to invent it? MS tried up to four simultaneous contexts, but the switching made the latency unbearable and it is now capped to two contexts at once.
  • 0 Hide
    warmon6 , June 20, 2011 1:47 PM
    im_caiusBut it would have to have 2 wifi adaptors otherwise you wouldn't be able to connect to a Wi-Fi internet network


    You must not of read the article fully. It gives some info of how it might/should work.

    Quote:
    We surmise that the HP Wi-Fi mobile mouse connects to the Windows 7 machine's Wi-Fi hardware directly through an ad hoc connection. This should not upset the computer's ability to connect to an access point for internet connectivity.
  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , June 20, 2011 1:50 PM
    Not nice at all, now we have yet another thing polluting wifi needlessly.
  • 1 Hide
    carsontl , June 20, 2011 2:14 PM
    i've been using logitech setpoint on my iphone to use the iphone like a touchpad/mouse and it does everything through a wifi connection and a piece of server software located on the desktop... I don't think this mouse is the same way but it could be...
  • 0 Hide
    dotaloc , June 20, 2011 2:24 PM
    article indicates that no mouse activity will not interfere with standard wifi network connection. if that is the case, and the latency isn't bad, this is a nice option!

    bluetooth is pretty standard on notebooks, these days, i think? maybe just high end ones...i guess if this can knock $30 of the price of laptops, and other devices can also be added by wifi, this could be a good feature.
  • 0 Hide
    soundping , June 20, 2011 2:47 PM
    I Can't Believe It's Not Mouse!
  • 0 Hide
    reggieray , June 20, 2011 2:49 PM
    WiFi is slow enough without this turd sucking up more bits. I will stick with RF.
  • 0 Hide
    fball922 , June 20, 2011 4:10 PM
    I would guess if this worked through an ad-hoc connection, it would be Windows 7 compatible only. I am not sure what they mean by an ad-hoc network not disrupting the computer's other network connection as most drivers support only one connection at a time, IIRC, i.e. connection to ONE infrastructure network or ad-hoc network, not mixed. Win7 introduces the ability to simultaneously broadcast a network and be connected to another network.

    I think it most likely works by connecting through an existing infrastructure network and pairing with your computer somehow.

    I wonder how they measured battery life. WiFi is somewhat power hungry, I think, so it would seem their maximum battery life is in standby (or at least not real-life usage... No battery claims ever are).
  • 0 Hide
    cookoy , June 20, 2011 4:14 PM
    i'll wait a little more for the technology to mature and price to go down. (real reason is i just bought a regular wireless mouse with a small dongle, timing sucks)
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , June 20, 2011 4:23 PM
    I see one major benefit of connecting via WiFi over bluetooth, and that's range. If you needed to control a computer from a very long distance (like flipping through powerpoint slides in a big conference room where the machine running powerpoint is not nearby).
  • 1 Hide
    rodney_ws , June 20, 2011 5:11 PM
    If your internet connection is faster than your wireless connection, this mouse will just make your internet connection even slower. Now if you have a 3 mb/s internet connection and your wireless is sailing along at 54 mb/s I suppose this is a non-issue.
  • 0 Hide
    husker , June 20, 2011 5:59 PM
    Wow, I can't believe the negative comments here. This is clearly marketed for laptop users, since an RF dongle on a desktop is not a big deal. However anything sticking out of a laptop is a big deal and this just gives people another option. Are there downsides? Yes. But the other options also have downsides, just different ones. If you give some people a solid gold brick all they would do is complain about how heavy it is.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , June 20, 2011 6:37 PM
    Wireless keyboard/mice suck, and they suck bad. Nothing worse then constantly having to charge or change batteries because the damn things are dead. Especially if you are in the middle of a game or something.

    I had a wireless mouse for a couple years, i finally got tired of changing the crappy ass batteries and went back to wired, never regretted going back to coords.
  • 0 Hide
    alidan , June 20, 2011 7:08 PM
    my a$$ that thing lasts 9 months.

    but instead of making bluetooth standard on all laptops (im guessing a 5-15$ cost) they go wifi, something i can see as laggy as hell.

    granted you aren't playing games on it, so the lag could be half a second and wouldn't matter to much, but still.
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