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Microsoft has years of experience creating ergonomic keyboards and mice designed to promote healthy computing principles. These products are designed based off extensive research. And today we are making some of this research available in the Microsoft Healthy Computing Survey so you can get some insight into data used to build these types of ergonomic products. I suggest giving the survey a look – some of the findings may surprise you. In taking a look at the survey myself, it has certainly made me consider “comfort” when sitting in from of my PC all day. Of the people we surveyed from around the world, 85% of them said they experience discomfort on a daily basis as a result of their workspace setup. And now that I think about it, it may be time for me to consider changing my own setup here at work for a more healthy and comfortable experience. We have also created an infographic that I have included at the bottom of this blog post that highlights a lot of the findings within the Microsoft Healthy Computing Survey.
The next evolution of ergonomic products from Microsoft is being announced today – the Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop which is the result of our continued research and investment in ergonomics. The Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop is the latest evolution of Microsoft’s Natural line of ergonomic products which was first launched nearly 20 years ago in 1994 (1994 is when Star Trek: The Next Generation ended its awesome 7 year run on TV if you needed a reference point). When designing the Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop – the goal was to create something beautiful without sacrificing the ergonomic benefits provided by the industry-renowned Natural Ergonomic Keyboard and Mouse.
The Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop is a combination of the Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard and the Sculpt Ergonomic Mouse. The keyboard incorporates a split layout. As you can see in the above photo – it’s quite unique. When I first laid eyes on the keyboard, it looked as though it came from the future with the way the keyboard was split. Then when I put my hands on it, it felt like the keyboard naturally “fit” my hands. This split keyboard layout is designed to help position the wrists and forearms in a natural, relaxed position.
The palm rest is cushioned and the keyboard has a “domed” shape, as shown above, to reduce wrist pronation. Matter a fact, the internal codename for the keyboard was “Manta Ray” because as you can see, it resembles a manta ray. It also allows for reverse-tilt angles to promote a straight, neutral wrist position. All these adjustments to a traditional keyboard put your body in the best possible position for comfort and ergonomics.
The keyboard is optimized for Windows and features hotkeys at the top for quick access to the charms in Windows 8 (and Windows 8.1) as well as media playback and snap controls for multitasking.
And the number pad is separate – allowing you to move it out of the way if you aren’t using it. This also adds ergonomic benefits – helping reduce the potential for shoulder rotation injuries.
The Sculpt Ergonomic Mouse is also designed for healthy computing with a unique ergonomic shape that encourages natural postures. The mouse is taller than most mice to reduce the contact between desktop surface and the underside of your hand, which helps minimize carpal tunnel pressure. And the angle of the mouse puts the forearm in a more relaxed position. All these ergonomic benefits should change the way you feel when using a mouse for long periods of time. The mouse also features the Windows button for quick access to your Start screen in Windows 8, a back button for quick navigation, and a four-way scroll wheel (horizontal and vertical scrolling).
The Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop will be available in August 2013 for an suggested retail price of $129.95 (U.S.). The Sculpt Ergonomic Mouse will also be available separately for an suggested retail price of $59.95 (U.S.).
For more information – click here.
Additionally, you can find some really good tips on setting up your workspace to make it more comfortable, and on helping to choose the right keyboard and mouse by visiting our healthy computing website.
And without further ado – here is the infographic I mentioned above with some interesting data points and facts on being comfortable while you work at your PC:
Side note: Above images of the Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop were taken with my Nokia Lumia 1020 Windows Phone!
I am extremely disappointed! You have made the (almost)perfect keyboard layout, a gorgeous looking piece of hardware, but you messed the Esc and the F-keys! Why are those buttons different than the others?! Why there is no space between them and the first row of buttons? I'm a developer and I use those keys a lot! Do I have to build a keyboard myself like Jeff Atwood?!?
been using MS ergonomic keyboards for over 10years. I was expecting some sort of touch control integrated in the next iteration. A lot of F keys can be free and more functionality with a single small touch interface with gestures. That will be more ergonomic instead of moving between kb and mouse.
Sure would be nice if Microsoft or SOMEONE would make one of these in a lighted keyboard, with the option to change the backlight colors and so forth. There are many gamers and late night surfers who would absolutely LOVE this feature.
This is a great product combination.
How long before it reaches the Indian shores?
yargbh - I fixed the infographic. Now you can click on it for a high-resolution version. Apologies!
I've never understood how anyone can use these. The number 6 is on the wrong side of the keyboard. You'd think with all of their years of experience, they would have caught this error.
The infographic should be higher resolution. What's the point of making an image with text when it's not large enough to read the text clearly?
Wow! Looks amazing!
Is there a keyboard only version as well?
BTW talking about ergonomics: Bring out a left handed version of the keyboard too!
I am right handed so I have my mouse on the right. Apparently hardly any keyboard maker realizes that the keyboard is wider on the right. So the mouse is further away from the center and that's not very ergonomic.
A left hand version would then be ideal.
Is it wired, bluetooth or RF?
How about a better multi-touch/gesture mouse and touchpad? Also please work on Windows media player, movie maker, media center, etc. outdated desktop programs please!
Where's the left-handed version of the Scult Ergonomic Mouse? And you announce this just a day after International Left Handers Day, August 13? (en.wikipedia.org/.../International_Lefthanders_Day). On behalf of my left-handed brothers and sisters, I am truly disgusted! Yet again, we are marginalised by the mouse manufacturers of the world!
In all seriousness, will there be a LHS version of this? My faux outrage is only half-faux...
Ergonomic Mouse product page > Details > Item #3 ... there's a typo: "...one-touch access ot the Start screen."
Very excited about the mouse but I'm not sure about the keyboard. Seems like each side of the keyboard should be a bit more vertical to be ergo-friendly. After all, isn't it the motion of always having your wrist flat that's so bad...? (I'm thinking something like the Kinesis Freestyle Keyboard.)
It's good to see you're still making curved "natural" keyboards like this. My old Natural Desktop 4000 (ca. 2005) is still working like a champ, but it's nice to see something shiny in case something happens to it.
Will you release a replacement for Desktop 4000 with numpad attached? Possibly fingerprint reader too?
I'm tired of buying same keyboard again and again as it appears to die once you spill something on it once, while my previous keyboard lasted for 5 years.
Hi i want to know if you are planning to release this keyboard in other language configurations in this case in Spanish traditional sort.