Friday, December 1, 2023

This origami-inspired mouse folds flat for your travels


When I travel with my MacBook Pro, I like to bring a mouse with me. As great as Apple’s trackpads are, nothing beats the precision and comfort of one of the best mice for Mac. But I’ll admit this setup has some serious problems: Take a full-size mouse and it’s bulky, but take a travel mouse and it’s uncomfortably tiny.

There might be a solution, if you believe what you read on a new Kickstarter campaign. Aside from having a rather inelegant name, the Air.0 mouse believes it can offer the best of both worlds for travelers while still remaining light and unobtrusive.

That’s because it can fold almost completely flat when not in use. When you need to get down to work with your computer, the mouse folds up into a full-sized pointer and is magnetically secured into its new shape.

It’s a different approach to standard travel mice, which usually just look like what you’d get if their larger siblings were hit with a sci-fi shrink ray. Sure, they’re smaller and lighter, but they’re much harder to grip and use accurately. As well as that, their rigid bodies can’t be folded flat, so their bulbous shape can still protrude awkwardly from bags and pouches.

A novel idea — but does it work?

The Air.0 comes in a range of different colors and patterns and has a jagged polygonal pattern on its top surface that looks like it would be appreciated by a 2000s kid with wraparound shades and spiky hair.

My main concern, though, is how sturdy the device is when in use. With such a thin mouse, does it flex every time you click a button? It’s not exactly suited to marathon gaming sessions where you want something as robust and reliable as possible. But for lightweight web browsing, it’ll probably manage just fine.

On the plus side, it’s equipped with the Bluetooth 5.2 standard, and the manufacturer says its rechargeable battery can last up to three months before needing more juice. And because it’s so light, it’s unlikely to be damaged if you drop it.

So, if you’re after a new travel companion to replace your current portable mouse, the Air.0 might be worth a shot. It’s currently on Kickstarter, where it has already reached its funding goal.

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