Tuesday, September 9th 2008

Microsoft Unveils BlueTrack Tracking Technology - New Mouse Devices Announced

Microsoft Corp. today unveiled the world's most advanced tracking technology, Microsoft BlueTrack Technology, which allows consumers to take their mice anywhere and work with confidence on more surfaces than before. Microsoft's new proprietary tracking technology combines the width and power of optical technology with the precision of laser tracking to allow consumers to mouse on virtually any surface - from a granite kitchen countertop to the living room carpet. BlueTrack Technology will debut in two new top-of-the-line mice, Microsoft Explorer Mouse and Microsoft Explorer Mini Mouse, available this fall at BestBuy.com and in Best Buy stores.


Microsoft Hardware: History of Leadership
Microsoft Hardware has consistently raised the bar in mouse tracking technology throughout its 26-year history, including the launch of the world's first optical mouse in 1999. The LED light and sensor allowed consumers to mouse on more surfaces with ease, eliminating the old "ball" mouse for good. In 2005, Microsoft introduced High Definition Laser Technology, which allowed mice to work on many surfaces that optical technology did not. But now Microsoft's in-house engineers have taken mouse tracking to the next level, creating an exclusive, groundbreaking technology to advance the way consumers use their computer mice.

"Research shows that people aren't sitting at a desk all day, but they've gone mobile. In fact, 72 percent of PCs sold are notebook PCs, and consumers need a mouse that can go with them anywhere," said Mark DePue, platforms engineering manager at Microsoft and co-inventor of BlueTrack Technology. "BlueTrack Technology excels in areas where optical and laser technologies were falling short. Laser mice, for example, have a difficult time working on some common home surfaces, including granite and marble."

According to David Bohn, senior engineering architect at Microsoft and BlueTrack Technology co-inventor, "Laser technology is also sensitive to dust and dirt accumulation during travel, which can lead to poor tracking performance. With BlueTrack Technology you can rest easier about where your mouse will or won't track - it works just about everywhere, just like you."

Under the Hood
Microsoft's BlueTrack Technology works on more surfaces than both optical and laser mice. The large, blue beam and specular optics architecture, in conjunction with a Microsoft-designed image sensor and proprietary pixel geometry, generates a high-contrast picture of the mousing surface that allows exceptional tracking accuracy. The BlueTrack Technology light beam emanating from the bottom of the mouse is more than four times as large as the average laser beam used in today's mice, enabling reliable mouse tracking even on difficult surfaces such as carpet.

This advanced technology creates a superior, more precise picture of the surface, allowing consumers to use their mouse virtually anywhere. To see a video on the making of BlueTrack Technology and meet the inventors, consumers can visit www.microsoft.com/hardware/bluetrack.

Explorer Mouse and Explorer Mini Mouse
BlueTrack Technology will debut in two new high-end Microsoft mouse products this fall - the full-size Explorer Mouse and the smaller Explorer Mini Mouse. These mice pair revolutionary tracking technology with a sophisticated design that brings the mice to life. A chrome trim and blue lighting around the bottom rim of the mouse create a soft glow and set the device apart from anything else on the market. A right-handed, ergonomist-approved design offers hours of comfortable use, and 2.4GHz wireless technology delivers a reliable connection up to 30 feet away. The snap-in minitransceiver offers easy storage and mobility, allowing consumers to take their full-size mouse with them wherever they need it.

The full-size Explorer Mouse features easy recharging with a battery status indicator and a small charging base, while the Explorer Mini Mouse uses two AA batteries.

Availability
The Explorer Mouse with BlueTrack Technology and the Explorer Mini Mouse with BlueTrack Technology will be available at BestBuy.com and Best Buy stores in November for the estimated retail price of $99.95 and $79.95 (U.S.), respectively.

"At Best Buy we offer our customers the latest and greatest in consumer technology," said Steve Guild, senior merchant, computing peripherals at Best Buy. "We are excited to enter into our relationship with Microsoft BlueTrack Technology, as the products truly map to where our customers are using their computers - everywhere."

Both mice will be backed by a worldwide three-year limited hardware warranty from Microsoft.
Source: Microsoft
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8 Comments on Microsoft Unveils BlueTrack Tracking Technology - New Mouse Devices Announced

#2
mab1376
the wireless dongle should be much smaller like in the Logitech Nano, or even bluetooth.
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#3
a111087
so that is what all the buzz was about when MS released the video saying good bye to laser...
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#4
WarEagleAU
Bird of Prey
MS stuff usually is pricey.
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#5
Selene
MS+Best Buy always ends up costing 25-50% more then it should.
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#6
Necrofire
Power hungry, don't like regular mice.
I'm happy with my $15 lazor mouse, 1.5 volts, 0.1 amps.
It also works on every surface I've tried it on.
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#7
Viscarious
TLDR;

So does this have DPI? And if so, is it really better in the sense that laser is pretty responsive and accurate.
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#8
Polarman
a111087
so that is what all the buzz was about when MS released the video saying good bye to laser...
Taken from dailytech:

Goodbuy red laser and hello blue laser.

The new mice's blue ray beam and wide-angle "specular optics architecture" will work together in the new mice to allow much more accurate tracking. They can also work on surfaces red laser mice dared not to tread upon such as granite, marble, and even carpet.

It looks good!
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