Microsoft's mystery hardware? Arc Touch Mouse, launching in September

Microsoft has been teasing a new mystery hardware device over the past week. According to company insiders, the software giant plans to unveil a new Arc Touch Mouse in September.

Details of the Arc Touch Mouse began surfacing in early July as several European retailers began publishing listings for a "Microsoft Arc Touch Mouse". Company officials registered arctouchmouse.com on Tuesday March 30 this year and according to an insider that spoke to Neowin, the device will launch in September.

The mouse is the result of a Microsoft Research program dubbed "Mouse 2.0". The project detailed different designs for a prototype multi-touch mouse and one of the prototypes looks similar to the current Microsoft Arc Mouse. Microsoft officials published a research PDF paper in October 2009 which contained pictures of a possible multi touch mouse. Microsoft's hardware twitter account tweeted two different pictures over the past week (see below).

Microsoft plans to introduce the multi-touch mouse as a cheap alternative to costly touch displays for use with Windows 7. It's understood this is a basic implementation of touch and will likely not support multi-touch initially. It's expected to retail at approximately $70 according to some online price listings.

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Tom W said,
It's a basic implementation. Don't expect it to stop right there but it won't have multi-touch straight off the bat.

Which is pretty sad considering Apple managed to release a multi-touch mouse almost a year ago. Especially if Microsoft really plans on selling this for $69 as well (according to Engadget).

Not related to this but does anyone know of any software (for either windows or linux/bsd) that allows you to have more than one mouse?

By that, I mean, you plug 2 mice in and you have 2 seperate cursors.
I guess in theory it'd break all programs that read the location of the mouse but I'm really kinda interested to see if it's possible.

n_K said,
Not related to this but does anyone know of any software (for either windows or linux/bsd) that allows you to have more than one mouse?

By that, I mean, you plug 2 mice in and you have 2 seperate cursors.
I guess in theory it'd break all programs that read the location of the mouse but I'm really kinda interested to see if it's possible.


Until now, I don't know of anyone, but it will be kind of interesting to see one.

n_K said,
Not related to this but does anyone know of any software (for either windows or linux/bsd) that allows you to have more than one mouse?

By that, I mean, you plug 2 mice in and you have 2 seperate cursors.
I guess in theory it'd break all programs that read the location of the mouse but I'm really kinda interested to see if it's possible.

I'm not sure if you can purchase it but I know that MSResearch already did it.

Jose_49 said,

Until now, I don't know of anyone, but it will be kind of interesting to see one.

I think there is something like that for Xorg...

Bengal34 said,
I'm not sure if you can purchase it but I know that MSResearch already did it.

I've seen the thing you're on about I believe.
The single-PC for a classroom and up to 15 displays running off it?
From what I am aware, it's just a base PC with virtual PC, dedicated GFX cards and dedicated USB inputs.

n_K said,
Not related to this but does anyone know of any software (for either windows or linux/bsd) that allows you to have more than one mouse?

http://www.wunderworks.com/

Works really well if you get used to working with it. Only one cursor is in 'focus' though and you need to click to switch focus, that'll become clearer if you try it. I think there's a 30 day trial version.

EDIT: turns out I've been using an old version, the 'focus' thing mightn't be an issue any more but I've not checked

asusmc said,
Heres hoping that Logitech puts out a multitouch mouse/touchpad.

How are you connecting this article and Logitech?

MFH said,

How are you connecting this article and Logitech?

Logitech known for making good mouse and he hope Logitech will make a mouse with multitouch???

MFH said,

How are you connecting this article and Logitech?

How is an article about a mouse related to the leading manufacturer of PC input prepherals...? Wow, back to school son!

"It's understood this is a basic implementation of touch and will likely not support multi-touch initially." Fail!

this world needs a new trackball..... thumb-operated trackball.....

i've been using the logitech trackman wheel since like forever.....

Cool! Hopefully be able to find it in the $20-$30 price range by end of year sales.

this world needs a new trackball

Oh I agree, though I loved the Kensington clones rather than thumb-operated, & when I couldn't find them any longer learned to make do with the free-wheeling scroll wheel on some Logitech mice. But while I love my VX Nano, longevity is not one of it's attributes -- I've gone thru almost half a dozen during warranty, & have been looking for an alternative for when the warranty runs out... this new MS toy could be something interesting to play with. :-)

If they're going to implement a touch surface on top of a mouse, they should implement it like this. Use the touch surface on top to be able to zip the mouse cursor across the screen over long distances so you no longer have to lift the mouse off the desk in doing so--a couple of finger swipes over the top should do it. Then allow the standard mouse movement to have precision control over mouse cursor. That would be the perfect mouse.

I find it interesting that it won't support multitouch "initially". Very curious, considering that Windows 7 has built-in touch API's. So what is the hold up here?

Now I certainly would perk up if thing had a color micro LCD display built-in and under the touch surface.

Cool. Of course I want to play around with it (And get more information on it) first, but I love my Arc Mouse, so if it's a logical step forward I'll definitely get one. I really hope it's good.

Microsoft should focus on creating a lightweight wireless mouse for big or small hands with big, lightweight batteries. That should be enough. The mouse is still the best invention for fat tech junkies like most of the people that buy new devices.

Here's some more interesting news. I am glad to see that Microsoft plans to introduce the multi-touch mouse as a cheap alternative to costly touch displays for use with Windows 7, I hope it would benefit the customers. Meanwhile, I will surf the internet and will be looking for more sites like neo-win, youtube or http://www.electricgriddlereviews.net/ and it's all good as long as the job is done.

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