Microsoft's Pro Intellimouse for gaming puts a sassy taillight on an otherwise sober design

Microsoft has extended its Intellimouse reboot with the Microsoft Pro Intellimouse, increasing the sensor report rate to a gaming-quality 1,000 reports per second.

Though Microsoft launched the original Intellimouse in 2003, last year it brought back the $40 Classic Intellimouse, with many of the same components as in the original. This year’s Pro Intellimouse is slightly more expensive ($59.99 at the Microsoft Store). 

Both mice maintain the corded connection, though Microsoft’s spec page puzzlingly says that the wired connection to the Pro Intellimouse is “USB 2.0 full speed compatible.” That’s odd, given that today’s USB peripherals are often USB 3.0- or USB 3.1-compatible. “Full Speed” USB 2.0 is actually a misnomer, too: That name was given to USB 1.0’s signaling rate of 12 Mbps. One would think that even a throwback mouse would migrate to USB 3.0, at least.

Nevertheless, Microsoft says the mouse reports up to 1,000 times per second, for silky-smooth mousing during gaming. Though Microsoft’s mice aren’t as flashy as some third-party peripherals, you can customize the “tail light,” Microsoft said. The Pro Intellimouse is available in two colors: black or white.

The Pro Intellimouse is a five-button mouse, with left- and right-click, a clickable scroll wheel, and two clickable buttons on the left side of the mouse. Unfortunately, this means the Pro Intellimouse still favors right-handers. Let’s hope that the message of inclusivity that drives Microsoft to develop screen readers for Windows and Xbox controllers for the differently abled could find an engineer to develop an ambidextrous mouse embraceable by lefties as well as righties.

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