I’ve been thinking of buying a Bluetooth mouse for my MacBook for a while now to let my MacBook be dongle-less when using a wireless mouse (I use a regular RF Microsoft wireless mouse right now). So, I decided to buy the relatively new Microsoft Wireless Notebook Presenter Mouse 8000 that is a Bluetooth mouse that also has PowerPoint controls on the bottom of the mouse as well as a laser pointer at the front off it. It seemed like a good combination of features for me. The box did not indicate Mac compatibility but its product web site mentioned something about how its magnifier works under Mac OS X. This seemed somewhat promising.
I’m using the Presenter Mouse 8000 with the MacBook now. But, all is not as you might expect. Here’s what I did…
The documentation does not talk about setting up the mouse for either Windows or Mac OS X. So, it was no help. The CD that came with the mouse included a Mac OS X DMG file to install. That was a good sign. I installed it and rebooted as directed. Then, I brought up Systems Preferences, went into Bluetooth settings and tried to detect and pair it with the mouse. I tried this several times (including going to the Bluetooth settings menu through the Keyboard and Mouse settings area). Unfortunately, it did not seem to find the mouse no matter what I did (and, yes, the mouse power switch was on). Finally, I turned off the MacBook’s integrated Bluetooth radio and plugged in the Bluetooth USB dongle that came with the mouse. The mouse started to work immediately without any configuration. So, much for the dongle-less Mouse idea (yes, it would have been safer to buy an Apple bluetooth mouse).
I brought up Microsoft Office 2004’s PowerPoint next to test it with the mouse. Unfortunately, it PowerPoint controls on the bottom of the mouse do not work with PowerPoint for the Mac. Surprisingly, the volume control buttons do work.
The product’s one saving grace is that its USB dongle is not in the same odd wide shape as the regular Microsoft notebook mouse that partially blocks other USB devices from being plugged into the MacBook’s other USB port. So, I may end up using it as my primary MacBook mouse. But, it does not get me the dongle-less state I was searching for and the PowerPoint features aren’t any use on my Mac.