Product Halo Scanner Mouse
Website QVC UK
Specs USB wired connection, 11.3x6.1x3.6cm, 1,200dpi laser sensor, maximum 400dpi scan resolution, compatible with Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7/8/8.1/10, Mac OS X 10.6 and above
A HALF-MOUSE, HALF-SCANNER sounds like more of a gimmick than an essential tool. And yet, here it is: the Halo Scanner Mouse, a straightforward-looking wired mouse with a small scanning window next to the conventional laser sensor.
It works by moving the mouse over the document to be scanned, which is then painted on-screen with each swipe. We're not sure anyone was asking for such a device, but it's an interesting idea on paper, so we had one sent to the office and got scanning.
The Halo Scanner Mouse is adequate for everyday point-and-click use, but not great. The scroll wheel rolls with satisfying clicks, but generally feels loose and flimsy. The use of thin plastics in the mouse's construction adds to this sense of cheapness. There are no thumb-operated Forward and Back buttons, either - just the scanner activation button on the left-hand side.
Furthermore, because these sides slant inwards towards the desk, there's no dedicated thumb rest or even a little concave for your first digit to sit. This means that relaxed grips can leave thumbs scraping along the mousepad instead of perched comfortably on the mouse itself.
On the plus side, this no-frills approach allows the Scanner Mouse to stay relatively light; it's certainly not noticeably heavier or bulkier than many other USB wired mice we've used, despite containing, well, a scanner.
Scanning a page or photo requires the use of a special mousepad which is included in the box. It's a large foam pad with a plastic flap on top. Documents are placed face up in between the two, leaving the mouse to glide over the plastic layer and scan the paper.
This works fine for loose documents but makes it quite hard to scan, say, a page from a notepad, as the added bulk creates an uneven scanning surface. We had to hold down the plastic with our spare hand to stop it shifting around while we moved the mouse.