Windows 8 is almost here. While it is near-perfect for tablet use, there are many users that aren’t looking forward to the new UI for their desktop experience. After using the new UI on a traditional keyboard/mouse setup I am finding it does grow on you and you get used to things pretty quickly.
That being said, many of the Windows 8 gestures work way better on a touch interface. While there are K&M equivalents, they just don’t feel quite right. With that in mind, Logitech is intent on filling in that gap by creating several new devices that are designed to make life in Windows 8 much easier.
The Logitech Zone Touch Mouse T400
At first glance, the T400 looks no different than what you are likely navigating with right now (if you are on a desktop, at least). It has a has right and left buttons like we are accustomed to, and it is the same old mouse shape. The difference lies in a glass-surfaced strip running between the buttons that is touch sensitive.
This allows easy vertical and horizontal scrolling. It is also clickable, and can even be used to automatically bring you back to the Windows 8 Start Screen by pushing the front half down. The back half will allow you to cycle through your open apps.
Best of all, it isn’t that expensive at $49.99. Sure, there are cheaper mice, but this could certainly make the Windows 8 experience less daunting at first.
The Logitech Rechargeable Touchpad T650
While I personally am not a fan of touchpads, some folks like them. If you are one of these types of users, you could potentially love the T650. There are no wires on this device, except for when you use micro-USB to charge the built-in battery.
Why a touchpad on a desktop? The big reason is that it can give you an experience that is as close to a touchscreen as you can get without a touchscreen monitor. The pad had a clickable surface and can track up to three fingers at a time. Swiping on the right brings up Windows 8 charms– similar to how it would work by swiping the screen. You can also swipe left to cycle through open apps or back and forth on the left edge to open the app bar.
As you probably already figured out, this is a full multitouch experience on the desktop. Best of all, it isn’t much more than the first mouse that we mentioned at $79.99.
The Touch Mouse T620
Last but not least, the Touch Mouse T620 is actually just the existing Logitech M600 with a special software update for Windows 8 gesture controls. This one also has a touch sensitive surface and acts quite similar to the first of these new peripherals.
There are also special shortcuts that let you wipe different directions to cycle through screens, open the Charms menu and other tasks. Basically, this does the same thing as the first mouse but adds a few additional gestures to the mix.
At $69.99 is it worth it? Maybe. The TouchPad is only slightly more and provides a much more natural Windows 8 Modern experience. Still, many users just would rather use a mouse.
The bottom-line is that Windows 8 might be better suited for touchscreen in many ways, but that doesn’t mean innovative accessories can’t make the transition go a little more smoothly. All of the current devices are ready for preorder now through Logitech’s website.