Logitech Cube is a Sleek Mini Mouse and Touch Presenter
Logitech's "Cube" is a tiny, handheld wireless-presenter gadget and a mouse for your PC. CIO.com blogger Paul Mah puts the Cube to work during a handful of presentations to see how it holds up to real-world use.
By Paul Mah, CIO
The Logitech Cube, called a “grab-and-go mouse” by its manufacturer, is really two distinct devices packed into one cube-shaped package. The Cube functions as an ordinary wireless mouse when placed on a flat surface thanks to an optical sensor. And when you pick it up, the device switches automatically to presenter mode so it can be used along along with your favorite presentation software to wirelessly advance through the slides.
The Logitech Cube has a fixed battery and an on/off switch. It comes with a Logitech Unifying receiver that plugs into your PC to enable wireless communication. A micro-USB port next to the power toggle can be used to charge the device, and an LED near the USB port momentarily lights up when The Cube is turned on. The mouse/presenter pairs with compatible devices in the standard Logitech fashion. And you can use Logitech’s SetPoint utility for a number of configuration tweaks and to view the current battery status.
Tapping the front of the Logitech Cube serves as a left-mouse click while tapping the middle part of the device functions as a right click. The specific areas that serve as left and right “buttons” are not visible, though they do offer tactile feedback and a satisfying “click” sound when pressed. The top portion of the device functions as a touch scroll wheel, and it offers the same fluid-scrolling experience as other Logitech mice, including the Touch Mouse M600 that I reviewed in March.
When you lift the Logitech Cube off of a flat surface it automatically switches to presentation mode, which disables optical tracking and the touch-scroll wheel. In presentation mode a click of the mouse button advances a slide, and if you flip the device over and click the button while it’s upside down you can return to previous slides. The transition between mouse and presenter is mostly seamless, but I did see a pause of a couple of seconds when switching between presentation mode and mouse mode.
I’m unsure of the technology Logitech used to detect the right time to toggle between mouse and presentation modes, and placing a finger under the optical sensor doesn’t fool the Cube. I used The Cube during a half dozen presentations, and in a couple of situations the Cube erroneously switched to mouse mode when held in my hands. Also, I didn’t have much luck with the touch-scroll functions during presentations. Sometimes when I tried to jump from one slide to another the hyper-sensitive touch surface made my slides rapidly advance, in some cases to the end of my presentations, before I could intercede.
Logitech Cube Review: Conclusion
The Logitech Cube packs a range of technologies into a surprisingly small gadget that fits in just about any pocket. The device also comes with a sleek form-fitting case.
However, I’m surprised the Logitech Cube did not come with a built-in laser pointer considering its price tag of $69.99. Even the company’s cheaper Wireless Presenter R400 has a laser pointer. As someone who frequently uses a pointer during presentations, I was disappointed not to see the feature. Lack of a laser-pointer feature aside, I will say that the minimalist design of the Logitech Cube is great for users looking for a small travel mouse that can also be used for the occasional presentation.
The embedded LED briefly lights up when the Logitech Cube is switched on.
The optical sensor is located at the bottom and uses a light source not visible to the naked eye.
The Logitech Cube next to my Logitech Anywhere MX Mouse