Mac Musings

How About a USB Keyboard with a Built-in Wireless Mouse Transceiver?

Daniel Knight - 2006.04.12

I have to admit to being unimpressed with Apple's mice and keyboards in recent years - and to being a huge fan of Logitech's better wireless mouse/keyboard combos.

I spend a lot of time at the keyboard, and I need something that's going to last several years and have a good feel. Also, I like an ergonomic multibutton mouse with a scroll wheel, something Apple has never offered.

A wireless mouse is a wonderful thing, especially if it has rechargeable batteries and a charging cradle. The batteries make the mouse a bit heavier, but using a mouse that doesn't have a wire to catch on things is very nice indeed.

I'm ambivalent about wireless keyboards. The ones I have are very nice keyboards, and the batteries last just about forever, but using a wired keyboard isn't really a hardship.

That got me to thinking: Wireless mice have gotten downright cheap, and decent USB keyboards are available at nice prices these days. Why has nobody thought of selling a USB keyboard/wireless mouse combo with the transceiver in the keyboard?

Surely USB provides enough power.

Also, regular wireless mice and keyboards tend to be a lot less expensive than Bluetooth ones - what's up with that?

Anyhow, I'd love to see someone market a line of USB keyboards with built in wireless transceivers that work with their wireless mice. No need for a separate transceiver on the desk; it's in the keyboard.

Perhaps computer users could choose from 3 or 4 different keyboards - a low cost one, a high-end one, something between the extremes - and a range of wireless mice. It might even be nice to figure out how to build a charging dock into the keyboard for the mouse's batteries.

Maybe I'm just blowing smoke. Maybe the market would never cotton to a wired keyboard/wireless mouse combo. But maybe it would see the sense of it - I'd certainly line up to try it out.

Microsoft, Logitech, Macally, Matias - anyone up to giving it a try?