When your hands cramp from too much computer time, a vertical mouse can help, according to science. The best vertical mice put your hand in a neutral, handshake position to reduce strain. When shopping for a vertical mouse, you’ll want to note how the mouse is powered up, how it connects to your computer, if it has the navigation buttons you want, and its price. Also consider how real customers feel about it to get an idea of how it’ll perform for you.
A rechargeable vertical mouse is nice but tends to be more expensive. But if you get one that uses batteries, be sure it has a power-saving feature so it doesn't burn through them. The way the mouse connects to your computer is also important. Wired mice are typically lighter and cheaper — and they’re also very responsive. But, if wires seem too cumbersome and so 10 years ago, Bluetooth is handy but may not be as responsive. That’s why many people prefer a 2.4GHz mouse, which has a wireless connector that plugs into a USB port, and swear by them for better responsiveness while still offering the convenience of being wireless. Finally, consider the buttons: Are they conveniently located and programmable?
Scroll on for four responsive vertical mice that fans swear to make computer time a lot more comfortable.
1. The overall best vertical mouse
This Anker vertical mouse sits right at the sweet spot of features and price, which is probably why it has more than 20,000 five-star reviews. It's a 2.4GHz wireless mouse, which — if you have the spare USB port —offers high-performing wireless mousing technology. It's also a nice, big mouse that keeps your hand in the handshake position while you work.
It also sports five buttons and a scroll wheel so you can navigate easily around the screen. The scroll wheel moves quickly through pages without making you move the mouse at all. There are buttons that take you to the next or previous page, and more. However, the buttons are not programmable. It runs on two AAA batteries and has a power-saving feature.
2. A pricier mouse with programmable buttons
This Evoluent vertical mouse was designed from the ground up for ergonomics. Each button sits where your fingers naturally rest. And best of all, each of those buttons can be programmed to do exactly what you want. Even the bottom of the mouse is shaped so that your pinky doesn't rub against the surface under the mouse. This isn't a budget mouse, but it's an ergonomic solution that has been winning raves for decades. This is the wired version, which is lighter and cheaper, but a wireless version is also available.
"It's hard to completely capture how much comfort this mouse allows compared to any other mouse out there," explains one reviewer. "It is more expensive than other pointing devices. But the cost of seeing a physical therapist is greater than the single price of the Evoluent."
4. A rechargeable wireless mouse that connects to 3 devices at once
This rechargeable, wireless Jelly Comb vertical mouse will work with three of your devices. There's a button on it that makes switching from device to device simple. Plus, it offers three kinds of wireless connectivity. Got a tablet with a USB-C port and want to add a mouse to it? This is your mouse. Prefer to connect via Bluetooth? Yep, this mouse will work, too. Got a spare USB port and prefer to connect your mouse via 2.4GHz? This mouse has you covered there. If the battery ever runs out mid-session, you can just plug it in and use it as a wired model.
It also has a next and previous button, and a scroll wheel. However, the forward and back buttons don’t work with Macs. With so much functionality, no wonder it has a 4.5-star overall rating from Amazon Customers.
“I am pleasantly surprised by the level of comfort and accuracy this mouse provides. Super easy to set up too!” one reviewer raved. “My wrist and middle fingers immediately started to feel less strain.”
4. A vertical mouse with a removable wrist rest
You know you've been working too hard when your wrist has callouses from dragging the mouse around the mouse pad. Or maybe you just have the wrong mouse? This Delux vertical mouse has a wrist pad built in so your hand rests right on the mouse and never drags around the surface under it. It comes in wired or 2.4GHz wireless models, and in addition to babying your hand with the wrist pad and vertical shape, it looks space-ship cool with a RGB lighting strip.
Also cool? The keys are all programmable, the lighting is programmable, it has five DPI settings to choose from — including a 4,000 DPI for gaming — and that wrist rest is removable. “The grip feels comfortable. It is a non-slip material and the forward and back buttons feel intuitive. To me, clicking the back and forward buttons with my thumb are easier and quicker than with other vertical mice, where both the back and forward buttons are located at the top of your thumb. [...] As a software developer, I recommend this mouse to anyone,” one reviewer raved.
Odell, Dan and Johnson, Peter. (2015) Evaluation of Flat, Angled, and Vertical Computer Mice and Their Effects on Wrist Posture, Pointing Performance, and Preference. WORK: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment & Rehabilitation, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26444940/