Arc wireless Touch Mouse and Keyboard

The Arc Touch wireless mouse from Microsoft is yet another attempt to make input device look smarter, sleek, and easy to carry. At the first glance, the Arc touch mouse is sure to impress any buyer. It has got great looks – shiny touchpad with a touch scroll bar and a matt black rubber body that bends.

tech reviews Updated: Aug 17, 2011 16:29 IST

The Arc Touch wireless mouse from Microsoft is yet another attempt to make input device look smarter, sleek, and easy to carry. At the first glance, the Arc touch mouse is sure to impress any buyer. It has got great looks – shiny touchpad with a touch scroll bar and a matt black rubber body that bends. Microsoft has also launched its Arch Keyboard that is really compact, light in weight, and just perfect for travelers. Here is a quick look at what accompanies the wireless mouse and wireless keyboard and my week long experience with the devices. Read on...

What's inside?

When you unbox the devices you find the Arc touch wireless comes with a nano wireless transceiver, a user manual, and two AAA batteries. Similarly, the Arc wireless keyboard comes with a nano transceiver, two AAA batteries, and a user manual. Both the devices are very easy to install. Just plug in the nano transceiver into your laptop or desktop and you are all set to use them.


My experience with Arc touch Mouse

The Microsoft Arc Touch Mouse has dimension 58.8 x 130 x 5 mm and is both flat and thin. It operates at 2.4 GHz and hence provides you wireless freedom upto 30 feet. As mentioned earlier, the mouse comes with a nano transceiver. This nano transceiver is sure an advantage for travelers as there is no chance of the transceiver getting damage because of bending. So you could leave it plugged into your systems and forget about it. But, if you are careless and the transceiver being very tiny there is always a change of losing it. To address this issue Microsoft has provided a magnetic area at the back of the mouse which can be used to hold the transceiver. The touch pad of the mouse has an indicator to show battery status. The Microsoft Arc touch Mouse is switched ON once you bend the mouse in the form of an arc and when you bend it straight it switches OFF. Hence really easy to switch ON and OFF the mouse and hence helps in saving battery. Unlike other mouse where you need to plug out the transceiver or remove the batteries to switch or switch off your laptop in order to switch off the mouse. Coming to the functionality of this mouse there is nothing really extraordinary other then the scroll touch pad. It does not have any dedicated back or forward button as other mouse do. It just comes with the right click button, the left click button, and the scroll touch pad. Few interesting things about the touch scroll pad – it helps you skim through long documents very easily. Also when tapped at the end of the scroll button it behaves as page up and page down. If you double tap and hold the scroll button then it does different things in different applications. For instance in a Firefox if you double tap on the scroll button it opens a new tab. Apart from this, you can download software from

Microsoft's website

, which allows you to configure the mouse buttons. But at a time only two buttons can be configured and one of the buttons has to be a right or left click button.


Another interseting feature of the arc touch mouse is the Blue Track Technology that allows the mouse to perform in almost any surface. I was able to use the mouse at very smooth shiny surface, over clothes, and many other places ;-)

The Arc keyboard

When I first unboxed the Arc touch keyboard it looked very interesting to me. The keyboard was really light in weight, thin, and not more than a feet long. This wireless keyboard has a range of 30 feet and operates at 2.4 GHz. Has a dimensions of 311 mm x 153.9 mm x 21.66 mm and weighs less than a pound. When you flip the keyboard you can see a cavity at the centre of the keyboard. That cavity has got a magnet and is a storage place for the nano transceiver when not being used.


When I started using the keyboard, I found that it has the same keyboard layout as the other generic keyboard do. Even when the keyboard is small in size the keys of the keyboard are of the standard size. No squeezing in the alphabet and number keys. The only keys that are reduced in size are the directional keys. The directional keys do not have dedicated buttons for right, left, up, and down – they are all in one button and you need to press at the end to generate commands.


At the top of the keyboard is the Esc key followed by six function key – F1-F12 keys. Apart from the function keys you will find the Home, End, Pageup, Pagedown, Del, and multimedia keys to control volume. All in all this keyboard is really cool and great to use. The reponse that you get by press this keyboard is also nice. You feel good while typing.

Is this mouse and keyboard for gamers?

No, Microsoft Arc Keyboard and Arc Touch Mouse are not for gamers. Gamers love to have more buttons on their mouse as they can customize each one of them for various gesture in their games. Also considering the keyboard, gamers would love to have individual direction play while playing games. Hence, these are not gaming devices.

Pros and Cons

Good stuff about of the mouse and keyboard are they are really light in weight, compact in size, and perfect for travelers. Both of them provide a range of 30 feet and hence allow lot of flexibility to the user in terms of distance. Cons about the devices – none of them is for gamers. Also people who use the dedicated arrows keys while word processing will reeally have a tough time using the arc keyboard as there are no dedicated directional keys available. Also, another downside that I see in the wireless mouse and keyboard is that one transceiver does not work for both. You need to plug in both the nano transceiver that blocks two of your USB ports.


The mouse and keyboard comes with a 3 years limited warranty. For more information on hardware you can visit


The Arc keyboard comes for approximately Rs. 2500 and the Arc touch mouse comes for around Rs 2000.

First Published: Aug 17, 2011 15:40 IST