Microsoft Announces Mice, Webcams

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Redmond, Wash. — Microsoft Hardware announced several mice and Webcams today.

The Bluetooth notebook mouse 5000 and the wireless notebook laser mouse 7000 are both engineered “to make notebook computing more productive and reduce touchpad fatigue,” said the company.

The 5000, with 2.4GHz Bluetooth, features high-definition laser technology meant for smoother tracking, more responsiveness and better precision. It also a battery life indicator right on the mouse, an on/off button and three-plus months of battery life. The mouse is scheduled to become available in October.

Meanwhile, the 7000 mouse offers 2.4GHz wireless, the same high-definition laser technology as the 5000, and a Smart software connection that provides access to the Windows Vista Flip 3D feature. Availability is scheduled for this month.

Each has a $49.95 suggested retail.

Microsoft also announced the Mobile Memory Mouse 8000 — that the company is hailing as the industry’s first rechargeable notebook mouse with 1GB of flash memory built into the transceiver. It uses a magnetic charging system that lets consumers continue working while the mouse recharges, said Microsoft. The charging cord magnetically connects at one end to the underside of the mouse, and the other to the tip of the transceiver. The included AAA rechargeable battery also offers more than three weeks of battery power on a full charge, according to the company.

It will be available in October for a $99.99 suggested retail.

Finally, Microsoft announced two Webcams to its lineup: the desktop LifeCam VX-7000 ($99.95 suggested retail) and the LifeCam NX-3000 ($59.99), a notebook unit. Both come with a connection to Photo Swap, a feature that allows consumers to share digital photos with friends and family and see their reactions in real time.

Other features include a Windows live-call button for placing video calls; the LifeCam Dashboard, which provides access to such controls as pan, tilt and zoom; and one-touch blogging, which enables users to post high-definition LifeCam pictures directly to a Windows Live Spaces blog.

The LifeCam VX-7000 includes a 2-megapixel sensor to deliver high-definition video and still photography (7.6-megapixels interpolated), while the LifeCam NX-3000 features video at 640 by 480 pixels, 1.3-megapixel still photography and a built-in unidirectional microphone with acoustic noise cancellation.

Both Webcams will be available this month.


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