With Windows 8's overwhelming emphasis on touch-based navigation, it only makes sense that there's been an increase in mice designed to accommodate users lacking systems with touchscreens, or those who simply don't feel like constantly reaching over their desks to touch the display.
The Logitech Touch Mouse T620 is a great overall solution to this conundrum, offering users a very cool-looking and practical mouse that supports a bevy of gesture controls and Windows 8 shortcuts. While it's more expensive than most competing mice and mildly uncomfortable to hold for an extended period of time, its wide-ranging gesture control functionality and unique ability to run off one or two batteries justifies its price tag.
Design and features
The T620 updates the Logitech M600 by being fully optimised for Windows 8. The T620's plastic chassis measures 64 x 112 x 28mm (WxDxH) and sports a smooth two-toned black and grey finish. While other Windows 8-ready mice like the Microsoft Sculpt Touch Mouse and the Logitech Zone Touch Mouse T400 rely on standard left and right-click buttons and some variation of a touchstrip, the T620 sidesteps these basic elements because, like the M600, its entire top surface is touch-sensitive. The end result is a cool, Zen-like mouse with a look reminiscent of a smooth wet stone.
There’s a pair of glide strips on the bottom of the mouse to ensure smooth movement. The underside also houses the power switch, LED battery status light, and a battery compartment which also has storage space for the included wireless dongle. The battery compartment can hold two AA batteries, though the T620 can fully run on a single AA battery if needed. Keep in mind, however, that running off one battery lowers the battery life from its estimated six months to three (obviously enough).
The T620's low profile isn't the most ergonomically sound, since the only way users can avoid surface drag from any overhanging fingers is if their hand assumes a claw-like shape during use. On the plus side, though, the T620's absence of physical buttons gives way to an ambidextrous design that lets both lefties and righties get in on the action.
The T620, like the T400, is only compatible with Windows 8, Windows RT, and Windows 7. Windows 8 users looking for a mouse that also works with their Macs should check out the Microsoft Sculpt Touch Mouse. The T620 is covered by a three year warranty.
The T620 connects to a PC using its included USB 2.0 wireless receiver, via a 2.4GHz wireless signal. While the T620's dongle doesn't entirely eliminate the need to occupy a USB port in the same manner as a Bluetooth-enabled mouse does, the T620 benefits from Logitech's Unifying receiver technology since it allows up to six compatible devices to share the same dongle. Setting up the T620, meanwhile, requires little beyond plugging the USB dongle in and waiting several moments as the drivers install themselves.
Although the T620 doesn't have any actual physical buttons, it nonetheless features basic three-button functionality. Accordingly, tapping the left and right sides of the touch surface is the equivalent of left and right-clicking, while tapping the middle of the surface with two fingers yields a middle click that allows for hyper-scrolling through longer documents or sites.
Like the Logitech T400, the T620 supports vertical and horizontal scrolling, so users can flick and swipe their way through documents, websites, or the tiles on their Windows 8 Start screen by sliding a finger across the T620's surface. Vertically swiping two fingers across the T620's surface, meanwhile, lets users navigate backwards and forwards through whatever websites they've visited.
Impressively, the T620 goes beyond its peers by supporting a slew of shortcuts designed to facilitate navigating through Windows 8, and although these admittedly take some getting used to, they’re ultimately pretty useful once you have acclimatised.
Accordingly, double tapping the lower portion of the T620's surface with one finger lets users jump directly into the Windows 8 Start screen, while performing the same gesture with two fingers toggles between showing or hiding the desktop screen. Moreover, swiping a finger from the far left edge of the T620 switches between open applications, and swiping from the right brings up the Windows 8 Charms menu. Unlike the Logitech T650 Wireless Rechargeable Touchpad, however, the T620 does not offer any pinch-zooming capabilities. Still, it boasts an impressive depth of functionality for a mouse, especially one that doesn't have any buttons.
The Logitech Touch Mouse T620 offers users a sleek-looking mouse that supports a bevy of gesture controls and Windows 8 shortcuts in addition to its other features. It's about as good a mouse as one can hope for when paired with Microsoft's new operating system. Were it not for its slightly uncomfortable low-profile and somewhat expensive £56 asking price, it would have been a serious contender for a Best Buy award. As it is, however, the T620 is still a good option which justifies its price tag.
Published under license from Ziff Davis, Inc., New York, All rights reserved.
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