Would you like some mouse pad alternatives that are as good as the real thing without spending a penny? Keep reading!
A mouse is an essential part of a computer system. It handles all input to our computer. A faulty mouse can cause the entire computer system to fail. Therefore, maintaining a mouse in excellent working condition is essential for running our computer system smoothly.
We asked Adam Collins from Ignite SEO, who used to run a web agency. He said, “Alternatives to a regular computer mouse might just be what you need as a solution to a “dragging mouse” on your wrist and arms. I recommend using the roller, pen, joystick, and trackball mouse as alternatives to a regular mouse.”
So, let’s get started with mousepad alternatives now that we’re talking about them. For the mouse to function correctly, we should never handle it roughly and always use it on a smooth surface. Many of us take this for granted and start using the mouse on any surface, but this hurts it in the long run.
As our technology advances, we have access to many previously unavailable modified mouse models. It was attached to the computer system with a wire and silicon rubber rollers underneath. These devices were meant to be used with a mouse pad underneath.
Having grown up with mouses, we also know the hassle of all those wires and the frustration when an actual mouse would chew those wires. Quite ironic.
The current generation of devices is more advanced and easier to use. We have an optical mouse with LED lights and a laser mouse with laser lights. We rarely find wired mouses anymore, and in fact, they are a thing of the past. Nowadays, we mostly get wireless ones that connect via Bluetooth, but a proper mousepad is still needed underneath.
What kind of surface is suitable for a mouse pad?
Most of the work you do with your computer system is done through a mouse. If we talk about mouse pads, this is the first question that pops up: what kind of surfaces are suitable for a mouse pad? It is possible to select or perform actions on the computer using your keyboard, but most of them are complicated. Therefore, if your mouse is damaged, your whole computer may become useless.
In its long history, mouses have undergone several evolutions. Using the surface, the mouse can measure the movement we give it. Surfaces are, therefore, necessary for the mouse to function correctly.
- Silicone surface allows better tracking. The open-cell styrene butadiene rubber surface is a popular surface for mousepads. After the modernization of the ball, the fabric surface became extremely popular. Other options include plastics and recycled rubber tires.
- Different purposes require different surfaces. For example, when you want a computer gaming surface, there are better options than those for general purposes. Your mouse’s sensitivity will depend on what you are using it for. Play on a plastic, glass, aluminum, or carbon fiber surface for the best gaming experience. The same goes for those involved in graphic design and photo manipulation.
Nowadays, many disregard the importance of mouse pads because they rely on advanced optical sensor mouse, but even these can malfunction if not used with a pad.
There are two types of mouse pad surfaces: hard and soft. A mouse moves faster on a hard surface, while a mouse moves slowly on a smooth surface, giving you greater control.
Basically, your mouse pad’s surface should be even and have a consistent texture. Depending on the purpose, you can choose the surface of your mouse pad. You will have a much longer-lasting mouse this way.
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11 Mouse Pad Alternatives
You might often not have a mouse pad available when you need it. There can be many alternatives to a mouse pad. Some of these may even be familiar to you. Currently, there are handy mouses that you can carry anywhere, but this isn’t the case with mousepads.
We rarely carry mousepads, which are not very portable. People are constantly on the move while using the laptop, so they would have to take the mouse pad everywhere, and people often forget to do so.
Many laptop users require a mouse since laptop touchpads are not ideal. If you are on a trip and an emergency arises, and you need to work on your laptop but don’t have your mouse pad, below are some alternatives you can use.
You can find a magazine almost anywhere. The thicker the magazine, the better. Make sure the surface is smooth and flat. It will make a great mouse pad.
You can quickly get a few sheets of paper. Keep them one over the other, and you have your DIY mouse pad. It works perfectly. However, if you have sweaty hands, you must change them often.
The thickness of the cardboard makes it the perfect mouse pad. Even though they are not so smooth, they can be a great option in an emergency.
Dining table mats or any table mats
It is only necessary to choose mats with smooth surfaces when using these.
Using a folder as a mouse pad is also a great idea. Most college students or office workers carry this item with them. It can be used almost anywhere.
Duct tapes can be highly versatile. These can be used to make a DIY mouse pad. Cut out a few equal-length pieces of the roll and stick them from side to side and from front to back. It is now ready for use. You can also make them look fancy.
The wax papers are usually found in the kitchen, and at first glance, it seems as if they have no connection to the computer. It can, however, be used as a mouse pad due to its smooth surface. You need to cut out a strip from the roll.
A hardcover book
They’ll also work great. The only concern will be the size; the larger, the better. In an emergency, however, any size will work.
The wood desk
If you don’t already have one, you can use the wood surface of your desk as a mouse pad.
Use the bedsheet as well. Smooth out any wrinkles, and your bedsheet can be used as a mouse pad.
It may seem odd, but you can use your lap in an emergency. Your lap may not be convenient, but it will be better than nothing. It’ll take care of your work.
We have listed some alternatives to the mouse pad above. Indeed, you can test them out to see if they work.
Surfaces to Avoid
Taking care of your mouse will ensure that it lasts a long time. Use mousepads, for example. You will notice the difference between using a mouse with a pad and one without one when using the new modernized optical sensor mouse.
In the long run, using a mouse without a mouse pad is not advisable. Initially, mouse pads were made of specific surfaces, but as technology developed, the range increased.
- Surfaces influence mouse performance more than other factors. Smooth and reflective surfaces usually cause jittering and loss of tracking when the mouse is moved over them. Consequently, you should avoid using a mouse over a highly polished wooden or glass surface.
- You should not use glass tables, tables with a glossy or reflective surface, and a mirror. As mentioned above, the surface underneath the mouse should be reasonably smooth. Because of this, you should avoid smooth or bumpy surfaces.
- Soft fabrics, such as the fabric arm of a couch, would not provide any sensor for the mouse.
We have been told many times to keep the computer table clean. A dirty surface affects the mouse heavily when they are equipped with rollers. When the mouse was moved across the dirty surface, the dirt from the surface rolled into the mouse. While our mouses do not have a ball or roller, using them on dirty surfaces is still unethical. A dirty or rough surface tends to increase friction between the mouse and the surface, eventually damaging its outer area and negatively affecting its functionality.
- You should not use the optical mouse on glossy surfaces as it would only sense its reflection. Therefore, a mouse pad is recommended when using an optical sensor mouse. Unlike the optical sensor mouse, the laser mouse uses a laser sensor instead of an LED light to track movements, so it works on most surfaces, including shiny ones. However, these do not work on a tissue-like surface, whereas an optical mouse can.
Can I use a mouse without a mousepad?
Most of the time, you do not need a mousepad because the rubber ball does not need to grip the surface to move. However, you will need a mousepad if you use your mouse on a semi-reflective or fully reflective surface.
Taking good care of your mouse will eventually enhance its functionality and the overall performance of your computer. When you don’t have an actual mouse pad, use the mouse pad alternatives listed above.