Mouse glove is designed for new comfort zones

Feb 28, 2012 by Nancy Owano report

(PhysOrg.com) -- Yet another alternative to the conventional computer mouse is being marketed, this time a pull-on glove that behaves as a mouse. The Ion Wireless Air Mouse Glove is from a Cocoa, Florida-based company, Bellco Ventures, which describes itself as specializing in new product development and marketing. The mouse glove can serve up functions carried out in the conventional mouse—right click, left click, scrolling, and more.

That “more,” as promoted by Bellco, includes wireless freedom and comfort in no longer having to hold on to a physical mouse for long periods of time and being “stuck” at a workstation.

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The glove has buttons worn on the finger that allow the user to perform left and right clicks—positioned on the index finger and pressed using your thumb--, an off and on switch, and LED. The glove set includes a USB module that you plug into your computer’s USB port. The glove works with Androids, Linux, Mac and Windows systems.

To scroll, the glove wearer uses wrist movements to go up and down the page. The mouse is wireless and rechargeable with the USB port; you can control your computer up to 35 feet away, which is another key selling point besides comfort, from Bellco.

“No desk needed,” says the company's ad;”sit back and relax from your big chair and control your big screen computer or Internet TV.”

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Excessive use of hand movements while operating a computer and mouse has led some computer users to complain of sore hands and wrist problems, including carpal tunnel syndrome. In response, there have been attempts by gadgeteers as well as entrepreneurs to explore new directions in mouse design.

Internet technology site reactions to Bellco’s announcement have been mixed, ranging from “odd but interesting,” to a “niche mouse” to strangest ever seen, to doubts that the glove, even though intended to relieve the discomfort of prolonged use of a conventional mouse, can be comfortable if worn for long work stretches. Packaged in blister packs, the new mouse-glove is selling for $79.99.

While the mouse glove is a new entrant for the Bellco product family, the mouse glove concept is hardly new. Innovative students as well as businesses have been playing with the concept for years. MIT students created interest in 2010 because they developed their version of a mouse glove inspired by a Tom Cruise movie. They were gratified to see they could construct something similar to what Cruise’s character had for less than one hundred dollars.

Last May, an episode on Revision3 Internet Television announced “Today we are building a mouse glove,” and the announcer showed how.

In 2002, a 16 year-old made news when he announced he designed a mouse glove for people suffering from repetitive stress injury. His prototype was also a mouse in a glove. At Cornell, in past years, a project called the Airmouse Initiative designed a motion-sensing glove with buttons to plug into a computer and function as a mouse. At North Carolina State University's College of Engineering, students said they had come up with a glove where sensors were attached to the ends of each digit; touching the thumb to other digits acted as a click and activated hotkeys.

In 2012, Bellco clearly sees a broadened market for its in a glove, from those suffering from hand ailments to those ready to move on to Internet television and home entertainment media including games.

The Bellco mouse glove will not only be feeding into the interests of computer users looking for a new kind of mouse but also into interests of users who are always ready to explore new concepts in remote control.

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User comments : 11

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Chris Jarvis
5 / 5 (1) Feb 28, 2012
I can't see this catching on except in some specialist areas. Let's face it one tends not to keep one's hand still when using 'popular pages' if you see what I mean :)
infiniteMadness
5 / 5 (2) Feb 28, 2012
The true pinnacle is brain/thought controlled pcs. Its still far far away but well look back one day at our hilarious ugly mice, keyboards and dumb "web cams".

Future = youre a part of the software.
antonima
not rated yet Feb 28, 2012
This is good. I expect a similar keyboard to be designed in a 'bundle' set. This, combined with HUD monitors and smartphones may usher a fairly awesome era in ultra-portable computing.
Ironhorse
not rated yet Feb 28, 2012
I look at the 'cloth' portion and automatically smell what they will smell like after a few days wear. Even cleaning that type of thing still leaves an odor. ;P
dschlink
not rated yet Feb 28, 2012
CJ - I think the key word here is: work. Not exactly a specialized area, many people do it for much of their lives.

I do see a problem for people who alternate between mousing and phone use.
wealthychef
not rated yet Feb 28, 2012
What's missing is: how do you move the pointer? Most of the work done with a mouse in my short observation of myself is moving the pointer to a selection. There's no point in being able to click if the mouse is not pointing at something interesting.
rwinners
not rated yet Feb 28, 2012
Cool! Looks like I'd still be able to grip a beer too!
Noumenon
1 / 5 (2) Feb 28, 2012
What's missing is: how do you move the pointer? Most of the work done with a mouse in my short observation of myself is moving the pointer to a selection. There's no point in being able to click if the mouse is not pointing at something interesting.


What do you mean? He's moving the pointer in the demo.
kaasinees
1 / 5 (1) Feb 29, 2012
What an ill designed and clumsy glove, cmon i can do much better than this, contact me to hire me.
alfie_null
not rated yet Feb 29, 2012
What an ill designed and clumsy glove, cmon i can do much better than this, contact me to hire me.

Build it. If I like it I'll buy it.
default_ex
not rated yet Mar 01, 2012
Outside of gaming, really don't see too much of a future for mousing. A lot of time is spent just moving the mouse to some place on the screen. We already have many alternatives that are leaps and bounds better: retina tracking, multi-touch displays, even full body tracking.

Multi-touch in particular is a great tech we really need to focus more on for desktop use. Removes the need for a mouse and keyboard, and when controls are thought out it's a lot more intuitive to use.

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