Apple Lands Ambidextrous Mouse Patent

Apple is showing a little love for lefties with a new patent that details an ambidextrous mouse. The pointing device is capable of determining if it’s in your left or right hand, and adjusts its controls accordingly.

The patent, which was filed in 2003, describes a system where users spin the mouse around to change which hand they hold it in. Built-in sensors help determine which hand the mouse is in, too.

Apple’s ambidextrous mouse patent

“The user may change the handedness of the mouse by rotating the mouse about a vertical axis of the mouse such that the left hand can use the left hand buttons and the right hand can use the right hand buttons,” the patent filing explains.

The patent also claims the mouse would be able to distinguish between different sized hands and automatically adjust its sensitivity, and it can even be used to identify who is holding the mouse based on how they are touching the device.

Apple already offers an ambidextrous mouse of sorts in the form of the Magic Mouse. A mouse that auto-configures button positions based on which hand is touching the device, however, would eliminate the need to manually change settings in the System Preferences application.

[Thanks to 9 to 5 Mac for the heads up.]