The Logitech MX Anywhere 2 wireless mobile mouse is designed for mobile OS X and Windows users, and that means tracking on just about any surface, including glass. Notable is that it can be used with Bluetooth or a USB dongle. Features and feel are top notch. Desktop use is also exceptional.
For me, it's hard to get away from my preference for a mouse after 30 years of use. And so, I am particularly fussy about which mouse I use. Previously, my favorite mouse was the Logitech Ultrathin Touch Mouse, and I gave it top marks in my TMO review. [Note: I abandoned the Apple Magic Mouse after that review.]
However good that Ultrathin mouse has been for me, albeit slightly too small for my hand and lacking a discrete scroll wheel, this new Logitech mouse I've been using for a couple of weeks is much better. A list of features is in order.
- The Darkfield™ laser tracker works on a wide range of surfaces, such as one might find in hotels or conferences. I confirmed this.
- It's fairly compact, with a length of 3.9 inches (100 mm) and a weight of 3.7 oz. (104 grams).
- It has an internal 500 mAh battery, and a full charge lasts up two two months. Confirmed by inference.
- There are two (exclusive) wireless options: Bluetooth or the Pico Unifying™ receiver (a USB dongle).
- One can easily switch between three Bluetooth devices without repairing.
- Scrolling can be very fast or slow and precise by press/clicking on the scroll wheel.
Over and above the formal list of features, I have found that the feel of the mouse as it moves on my desk, the fit to my hand, and the feel of the scroll wheel are superior to any mouse I've ever used in my 30 years of using Macs. Plus it's an especially handsome looking mouse. There's only one color option: black.
Left: Apple Magic Mouse. RIght: Logitech MX Anywhere 2
This mouse works out of the box as expected with a Mac, but to fully exploit all its features and configure the buttons, one must download the installer for the preference pane called "Logitech Options." I believe that replaces the Logitech Preference Manager since it overwrote that older manager that I used with the Ultrathin mouse. The installer is found on the Logitech support page. It takes its time installing, even on my Mac Pro, so be patient.
The Logitech Options software is exceptionally tasteful looking and orderly. I liked it a lot. The many options for the three option buttons are excellent and be really handy. On thing I appreciate is the ability to exercise the sound mute function on my Mac with just a click of the side button. Also, unlike its big brother, the Performance Mouse MX, (reviewed by Bob LeVitus here), this mouse can be used by left handed people who want to reverse the left- and right-click buttons.
Battery. I've been using the MX Anywhere 2 for about two weeks, and the battery indicator looks to be, at the very least, 75 percent. But because the indicator is small and graphical, it's hard to extrapolate. I think Logitech's specification is reasonable. (I wish there were a numeric display of remianing life.)
Glass surface testing. I have a door with glass panels in my office. I reached over and slid the mouse against the glass (with nothing behind it!) and it tracked perfectly on my display. I can affirm the developer's claim. I also used the fuzzy microfiber cover of my iPad Air as a makeshift mouse pad, and that worked just as well. The Darkfield laser is amazingly adaptable.
Pairing. Recognizing that the MX Anywhere 2 mouse may be used with one Mac at home and another on the road (or more), one can toggle between up to three Macs (or PCs) without having to repair. However, I particularly appreciate the USB dongle on my primary Mac Pro because it's always there—in contrast to Bluetooth which can occasionally be troublesome and require repairing. I noted, however, that this mouse can only be used/paired in either the Pico Unifying mode (USB dongle) or Bluetooth, but not both at the same time.
Scrolling. This may be the best part of this mouse for a writer. In the default mode, the scroll wheel is fairly fast and just right for scrolling through web pages or text. That scrolling speed, as expected, can be controlled in the preferences. Continuous touch is required, and there's a nice tactile feel. However, if you depress the scroll wheel, it clicks into an ultrafast mode which is free-wheeling, very fast and smooth. That's great for scanning through a very large document. I love this feature.
One of the problems I had the the Apple Magic Mouse is that if my index finger wanders or I brush against it when typing, it will fast scroll my page in BBEdit, losing my place. It greatly annoys me. Logitech's scrolling options prevent that accidental loss of place, and that's why I've abandoned the Magic Mouse in favor of the Logitech products.
Right sizing. Another plus, compared to the Logitech Ultrathin mentioned above is that the size of the mouse and the scroll wheel keep the index finger from flexing too much on a small, touch surface. This is just one more reason to appreciate a physical scroll wheel.
Packaging & Warranty
The MX Anywhere 2 comes in a really nice cardboard box with a cover flap that opens to show the mouse itself inde a plastic dome. Inside the flap is a visual user guide to help get connected. Included in the box is the mouse, a generous 28 inch (0.7 meter) USB to microUSB charging cable, a six panel pamphlet, and the Logitech Pico Unifying Receiver (which is very small and easy to overlook). A Velcro band to keep the cable tidy is a nice touch.
Beautifully packaged and well executed.
Unlike the Ultrathin, Logitech has avoided a manual with print that's too small. Instead they've used the small pamphlet for setup tips, leaving all the important stuff to be read (more easily) online.
There is a 1 year limited hardware warranty.
After using the Ultrathin for a period of time, I permanently abandoned the Apple Magic Mouse. Now, this beauty has come along, and, like Bob LeVitus' reaction to its bigger brother, the Performance Mouse MX, I consider it the mouse of my dreams.
This isn't an especially inexpensive mouse, but if you're one of those people who spends a lot of time on a Mac (or PC) or travels a lot and is confronted with oddball desk surfaces, this is a totally worthwhile investment. It's the best mouse I've ever used, a joy actually, and I recommend it highly.
Logitech MX Anywhere 2
|Apple Magic Mouse|
|Length||100 mm (3.9 in)||111 mm (4.4 in)|
|Width||61.6 mm (2.4 in)||57 mm (2.24 in)|
|Thickness||34 mm (1.4 in)||21 mm (0.83 in)|
|Weight||104 g (3.7 oz)||107 g (3.8 oz)|
|Battery||Internal, USB charging||2 x AA|
|Warranty||1 year||1 year|
Windows 7,8,10 - OSX 10.8
|OS X 10.5.8 or later|