Archive for January, 2014

Logitech Ultrathin Touch Mouse T630 Review

J.A. Watson from ZDNet wrote a report on his experience with the new Ultrathin Touch Mouse T630 by Logitech.  In his review he wrote “As with essentially all Logitech products I have tried, I highly recommend this one.”  After reading his article, I was compelled to hop on over to Amazon’s Website and .check price and availability as well as the specs and reviews.  The specs on the T630 were impressive…

  • Designed for Ultrabooks: Brushed metallic body and silky-smooth touch surface perfectly compliment the sleek look of your Ultrabook
  • Ultra-portable: Super-thin design slips easily into a computer sleeve or the pocket of your jeans
  • Windows 8 touch gesture support: Simplifies touch navigation with natural, intuitive gestures (also works with Windows 7)
  • Bluetooth wireless pairs multiple devices: Connects to your Ultrabook, tablet and desktop PC with easy switching between devices
  • Charge over USB: No battery hassles. Just 1 minute of charge time powers your mouse for an hour. (Based on typical user experience. Your results may vary.)

The customer reviews gave the Logitech T630 a four star rating and the $55.22 price tag along with free shipping clinched the deal.  I took delivery of the T630 today and I couldn’t wait to start using it.  I have been using the Microsoft ARC Touch Mouse for almost a year now and I have been very pleased with size and function, but the thought of ditching the dongle (Plug-and-go Nano Transceiver) for total Bluetooth connectivity experience excites me.  The T630 supports two Bluetooth channels, enabling me to use it with my Bluetooth enabled desktop computer as well.  This little device perfectly compliments my Logitech Bluetooth Illuminated Keyboard K810 making me truly wireless!

Windows 8.1 and the T630 connected as you would expect from a Logitech device.  After my laptop connect to the mouse, I went to http://www.logitech.com/en-us/support/ultrathin-touch-mouse-t630 to download “Setpoint”.  Setpoint provides smooth scrolling and gesture support for Logitech touch products to enhance your navigation experience.  As you would expect, this went without a hitch.  A restart was required and a splash screen appeared with a link to register your new device along with taking a short survey.  I always register my devices and I’ve taken the survey when registering other Logitech products, so I knew it would only take thirty seconds to complete.

Okay, so after six hours of using the T630 I have to say I like it.  I’m reminded of the days when I used to use a Mac.  There are no visible buttons on top but you still have the functionality of a two button mouse just by pressing on the left side or the right side of the singular surface.  One feature I didn’t want to give up that the Microsoft ARC Touch Mouse supported was the ability to rapidly scroll Websites just by double tapping on the arch of the mouse.  I was pleased to discover that this simple looking mouse offers the same feature simply by pressing straight down on the center of the mouse.

The small profile makes it extremely portable and Logitech claims the expected battery life is ten days on a full 1.5 hour charge.  On the other hand, the small profile can make it somewhat uncomfortable for a person with a medium to large size hand over an extended period of use.  Although it is lightweight it feels solid in your hand.  The switches on the bottom feel solid when powering on and off and switching from channel one to channel two.  I have to agree with J.A Watson “As with essentially all Logitech products I have tried, I highly recommend this one.”

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Windows 8.1…from a users perspective

Many of my customers ask my advise before buying their next computer.  My advise is based on a how they use their current computer and their future needs.  Some of my customers use their computer just to check email and surf the Web, others use their computers for work related functions such as documents and spreadsheets.  My first question is “Are you looking for a desktop, laptop or a tablet?”  If the customer is looking for a desktop replacement and they don’t have a touch screen, then I would recommend Windows 7, but if a customer is looking for a touch screen laptop or a tablet, then Windows 8.1 would make sense.

I’ve used Windows 8 since it became available as a public beta.  Windows 8.1 is a major improvement to the initial release of Windows 8.0, but the experience on a non-touch screen device versus a touch screen device is like night and day.  I use a laptop for my business projects and I spend a majority of my time programming, so a touch screen computer or tablet is useless to me.  Using Windows 8.1 on a non-touch screen device is a bit…well…clunky.  Steps that previously required two clicks of the mouse now takes three, ie shutting down from the Windows Start button or from the “Charms” bar.

Recently, one of my customers sold her house and moved to the Carolina’s.  Before moving, she wanted to buy a laptop or tablet so she wouldn’t have to be chained to her desk when she wanted to go online.  I was concerned to promote Windows new OS for a few reasons…

  • New OS…most of my senior customers do not like change.  Their philosophy, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!”
  • Her computer skills are limited
  • Windows 8.1 is radically different from the Windows XP experience that she was used to

As a service to all of my customers, I offered to go with her to Best Buy so she could hold a laptop and tablet in her hands.  I pointed out considerations such a weight, screen size, battery life etc.  After kicking the tires on just about every laptop and tablet they had on display, she decided she wanted the functionality of a full size keyboard that a laptop has to offer when she needs to type a letter and the convenience of a tablet when she just wanted to check her email and surf the Web.  With that said, she purchased the HP Envy x2 that sports a laptop and a tablet all in one.

After setting up the hybrid computer for her specific needs, I was surprised to watch her get around with ease even though she had never been exposed to the new OS.  I decided to kick the tires myself on this touch screen experience.  What I discovered was adapting to Windows 8.1 is less about the age of the user and more about the device they were using it on.  

As more of my customers make the switch to the new OS and devices continue to develop, I will continue to report my findings and their experiences in a future blog.