These days, more and more desk-bound jobs require employees to be working in front of computers in excess of eight hours a day. As a result, injuries related to long-term usage of keyboard and in particular mice have cropped up dramatically over the years. Besides spending less time using a computer (which may not be possible for some), the only other option would be to find accessories that are designed to reduce fatigue-related injuries. One such product is the Anker Wireless Vertical Ergonomic Mouse.
What Is It?
Anker may not have a big presence here, but in Europe and the US, it is a fairly famous company known for its range of computer-related peripherals, including this ergonomic mouse. Essentially, its unique design and shape are ideal for those spending hours after hours using a mouse, which tends to have serious long-term effects – Carpal Tunnel Syndrome being one of those.
Chances are, you’ll probably have never seen a mouse quite like the Anker Wireless Vertical Ergonomic Mouse. The regular mouse buttons…in fact, the entire top portion of a regular mouse is slanted vertically. When held, the mouse creates a neutral “handshake” wrist and forearm position that does not place stress on any part of the wrist, effectively allowing you to use the mouse comfortably for longer.
The mouse itself is a standard wireless mouse with an optical sensor, switchable dpi between 800, 1,200 and 1,800, gold-plated USB nano receiver that can be housed inside the mouse when not in use, and a seamless plug-and-play experience on Windows, Mac and Linux. There’s also a power saving mode that puts the mouse to sleep mode when it is idle for eight minutes; a single mouse click wakes it back up.
Is It Any Good?
Due to the mouse’s unique shape, it takes about a day or two to really get used to using it properly. As muscle memory slowly goes away, I slowly realised that the “handshake” position is actually very comfortable over long periods, and my wrists do not feel any sort of stress as compared to using my standard gaming mouse. However, the awkwardness of such a radical hand position is still apparent even after a week of use.
I also tried gaming with the mouse – it wasn’t really a good idea. Muscle memory in games such as CS:GO is even more important, making it difficult to use a mouse with such a high centre of gravity. Short, quick flicks of the mouse tends to result in over-pronounced movements, while the side-mounted buttons make it difficult to shoot accurately. It’s safe to say that this mouse isn’t built for gaming purposes.
To further test this mouse, a personal friend of mine working as an accountant who’d been struggling with a nagging pain and bruising on her wrist provided the perfect test subject for the efficacy of this mouse. I lent her this mouse for two weeks, and after a week of use I was told that the pain on her wrist – usually happening after a long day in the office – had stopped cropping up. By the end of the two weeks it had become clear that the ergonomic mouse had significantly reduced the instances of pain as well as the bruising on the wrist.
The Bad Stuff. Tell Me.
The Anker mouse feels just about right for a male adult’s hand, so it is actually a little large for a female, which was one of the feedback I received. However, the fact that this mouse really helps reduce wrist fatigue means that size is really a small matter.
The larger issue will stem from its price and availability. We received this unit from MyAnker.com, an authorised reseller for Anker products in Malaysia. The company currently is still expanding its portfolio of Anker products here, and its products are currently only available for purchase online.
What’s more, the Anker Wireless Vertical Ergonomic Mouse is being sold at RM150, which is about two times the price that it is being sold for on Amazon US – of course, there are international shipping and administrative charges that factor in to the final price. However, MyAnker is offering an 18-month warranty on products purchased from them, as well as free shipping.
Should I Buy It?
It really depends. If you spend countless hours in front of the computer, clicking away on your regular mouse, this could be an investment on the long-term health of your wrist. At RM150, it isn’t cheap, but for some, it may be worth the price.