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Friday, 05 August 2011 15:06

Take my Magic Mouse - please!


A rumour suggested Apple was planning to do away with the Magic Mouse. Does that make sense?

That headline is perhaps a little unfair - I don't own a Magic Mouse - but the old joke came to mind when I read a post from Cult of Mac claiming Apple was planning to discontinue the Magic Mouse and only offer the Magic Trackpad. Even though Cult of Mac subsequently changed its position to predict a forthcoming revision of the Magic Mouse, I wouldn't be upset if Apple did get out of the mouse business.

Firstly, the Lion user interface makes extensive use of gestures. I purchased a Magic Trackpad a couple of months ago in anticipation of Lion. As far as I can see, MacBook users speak more highly of Lion than those using desktop hardware. I suspect that has a lot to do with using a trackpad (or not).

Secondly, Apple's track record with mice isn't exactly stellar. Opinions on the usability of the Magic Mouse seem divided (trying to combine two quite different functions in one device means compromise), the scroll ball on the Mighty Mouse/Apple Mouse is notoriously prone to clogging, and the 'puck' mouse supplied with early iMacs was widely derided.

I've been a fan of Microsoft's mice for many years. They aren't perfect, but I find them more comfortable and functional than Apple's designs. And I know a fair few very satisfied Logitech mouse owners.

Even if Apple did stop offering a mouse, that wouldn't prevent Mac owners who prefer a mouse for particular tasks or even everyday activities from using a third-party mouse.


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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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