By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Fellowes is offering four new mouse products, with the initial stimulus for design coming from consumers joining focus groups conducted by the company. Products include Micro Trac, Opti Gel, Opti Trac and Ergo Tech.
"We built demand before we built the product," said Fred D'Angelo, Fellowes manager of consumer communications. "These are designed by consumers, for consumers, who especially liked metallics and opted for comfort and style."
Micro Trac, ideal for notebook computers, is easy to use, convenient and requires very little arm or hand movement to operate. The plug-and-play mouse allows a user to scroll, place and maneuver the cursor right away. No software is required.
Available in translucent blue or metallic silver, Micro Trac offers both USB and PS/2 connectivity options and is compatible with all Windows versions. The mouse is available at a suggested $24.99.
The Opti Gel mouse, available in both corded and cordless models, has five programmable buttons for precision point-and-click decisions. With its optical technology, the mouse provides clean, crisp control and light, easy maneuverability.
To increase comfort, the Opti Gel offers a gel insert, an ergonomic pad addition and a soothing alternative to "mouse freeze," a tendency for users to rest their hands on their mouse top while reading Web sites or downloading documents.
Both the corded and cordless Opti Gel offer USB and PS/2 connectivity and are compatible with Windows 95, 98, 2000, ME, NT, 4.0 and XP. The models include Fellowes Easy Point software. Suggested retail is $29.99 for the corded model and $49.99 for the cordless.
Opti Trac is an optical mouse and an optical trackball in one unit. When using the scrolling optical trackball, users find it located beneath their controlling finger where they can move precisely back and forth, up and down and side to side.
Then, with the click of a button, the mouse switches from an optical trackball to an optical mouse. In mouse mode, Opti Trac has four programmable buttons and the trackball operates as the scroll wheel.
The product is connected with a 5-foot cord that works with both USB and PS/2 connectors. It is 5.25 inches long by 2.75 inches by 2 inches high, and comes in a high-tech metallic, transparent smoke combination. Suggested retail is $59.99.
With its Ergo Tech mouse, Fellowes has abandoned the traditional flat oval mouse design. The mouse is slightly leveled on the right-hand side where a user's palm rests, while its 2-inch-high slope matches the fall of a user's fingers. It offers two programmable buttons and a scroll wheel.
Available either corded or cordless, the Ergo Tech wheel mouse transmits information via radio signals to a 4-inch receiver and cable. The corded Ergo Tech has a suggested $14.99 retail and the cordless version is $29.99.
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