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Microsoft Explorer Mouse - Microsoft Explorer Mouse

Ardjuna Seghers

By Ardjuna Seghers



Our Score:


So now let's take a look at the innovation that supposedly puts this mouse ahead of the pack: BlueTrack. The technology behind this innovation involves a (surprisingly enough) blue beam, which is said to be four times wider than the laser equivalent. But since laser is already incredibly accurate, what does BlueTrack do for you that its predecessor can't?

To find out, I used both this and a laser mouse on a wide variety of surfaces. Both mice worked equally fine on carpet. And though BlueTrack had a definite advantage on a sheet of transparent plastic, neither technology made for a usable experience.

However, if you have marble or granite surfaces where you might use a mouse, then BlueTrack is a godsend, since it works smoothly where optical or laser mice do not. It also works fine on rough-grain wood or plain laminate/veneered surfaces.

The best news is that you're not charged too much of a premium for BlueTrack. Compared, for example, to the £35 Microsoft Wireless Laser Mouse 7000, the Explorer can be had for £43, and the premium could be justified by the improved ergonomics alone.

Keep in mind though that most people using their mice on typical desks and tables won't notice any extra benefit to BlueTrack over laser, and thanks to the awkward scroll wheel you might want to consider Logitech alternatives such as the award-winning MX Revolution Mouse to be found for £7 or so more.


BlueTrack is better than laser, but only under certain conditions, such as working on marble, granite and other unusual surfaces. Even if this does not apply to you, if you don't mind its looks, want to go wireless, and like the idea of using a rechargeable/standard AA battery, then the Microsoft Explorer Mouse is a generally well-built and comfortable peripheral - as long as you're not heavily into horizontal scrolling.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Value 8
  • Features 7


November 7, 2008, 5:51 pm

I assume it will be available in a left-handed configuration too?


November 7, 2008, 9:16 pm

Until I take delivery of my new granite desk with marble inlay I think I'll soldier on with my trusty old no-name optical rechargeable wireless mouse (٢.99 from Ebuyer).


November 7, 2008, 9:20 pm

Ah, my old friend Intellimouse Explorer, how far you have come!

But you still look like a potato cut in half.

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