30 Years of Microsoft Hardware

A lot has changed since 1982. Take a look at our innovations through the ages.


The Microsoft Hardware Group dates back to 1982, when it was charged with creating the company’s first mouse compatible with Microsoft Word.

One year later, it shipped the Microsoft Mouse, which enabled people to interact with their computer more efficiently than before. In the 30 years since, this experienced team of more than 200—including ergonomists, usability experts, developers, marketers and industrial designers—has worked to create, develop and market breakthrough technologies that improve the way people interact with software and services, bringing them all together to create the best experience on the PC.

  • 30yrs_1982_microsoft


    The Microsoft Hardware Group is formed and charged with creating the company’s first mouse compatible with Microsoft Word.

  • 30yrs_1983_microsoft-mouse


    The Microsoft Mouse is born, and the software company ships its first PC-compatible mouse.

  • 30yrs_1993_microsoft-mouse-2.0


    After nearly two years of research devoted to understanding the human hand, the first ergonomic mouse, Microsoft Mouse 2.0, is introduced.

  • 30yrs_1994_natural-keyboard


    Now a signature design for comfort, the Natural Keyboard debuts as Microsoft’s first ergonomic keyboard.

  • 30yrs_1999_optical-mouse


    Offering the first major advancement in mouse technology since the 1960s, Microsoft introduces the first optical mouse products.

  • 30yrs_2002_bluetooth-keyboard


    Microsoft continues to lead the desktop peripherals category, unveiling the world’s first commercially available desktop for Bluetooth.

  • 30yrs_2004_starck-optical


    Microsoft Hardware and designer Philippe Starck create Microsoft’s first designer mouse, the Optical Mouse by S+ARCK.

  • 30yrs_2004_comfort-curve


    Developed by Microsoft ergonomists, the Comfort Curve layout debuts. It is designed specifically to be extremely easy to use while encouraging natural hand and wrist position.

  • 30yrs_2005_natural-ergonomic-4000


    Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 is designed with a curvy key bed, ergonomic arc and reversed slope for increased comfort and support.

  • 30yrs_2006_lifechat


    Microsoft takes Internet communications to the next level with the launch of the LifeCam line of webcams and LifeChat headsets optimized for Windows Live Messenger.

  • 30yrs_2006_natural-laser-6000


    Designed to fit a natural, relaxed hand posture, Microsoft debuts the first Natural mouse, Natural Wireless Laser Mouse 6000.

  • 30yrs_2008_arc-mouse


    Featuring a revolutionary new design shaped like a crescent moon, the Arc Mouse folds closed to reduce in size by almost half, giving consumers the comfort of a full-size mouse with the portability of a notebook mouse.

  • 30yrs_2008_bluetrack


    Microsoft unveils advanced breakthrough in tracking technology — BlueTrack Technology. BlueTrack Technology debuts in the Explorer Mouse and Explorer Mini Mouse and works on virtually any surface, allowing consumers to mouse wherever they go.1

  • 30yrs_2010_arc-keyboard


    Weighing in at less than a pound, the Arc Keyboard is a redesign of the keyboard with its unique, compact design that is a functional and stylish companion for your computer.

  • 30yrs_2010_arc-touch-mouse


    Microsoft introduces the Arc Touch Mouse, as the only mouse that flattens for portability and pops up for comfort. The Arc Touch features BlueTrack Technology and a new flick scrolling function.

  • 30yrs_2010_lifecam-studio


    Microsoft introduces LifeCam Studio with a 1080p HD sensor2 that is the closest thing to actually being there, featuring TrueColor Technology, which automatically delivers bright and colorful video, in virtually all lighting conditions.

  • 30yrs_2011_touch-mouse


    Touch Mouse is Microsoft’s first multitouch device designed for Windows 7 that lets people click, flick, scroll and swipe with gesture input, making it easy and fun to interact with their PCs.

  • 30yrs_2012_skype-certified


    Skype officially classifies that all Microsoft HD webcams and USB Microsoft headsets are Skype Certified – a testament to the great product quality in the Microsoft Hardware lineup.

  • 30yrs_2012_artists-edition


    Microsoft expands its collection of Artist Edition mice, ushering in five new designs to grace the surfaces of the Wireless Mobile Mouse 3500 and Arc Touch Mouse, brought to us by five artists who hail from diverse regions across the globe.

1 BlueTrack Technology does not work on clear glass or mirrored surfaces.

2 Popular video call services support 720p HD resolution — not 1080p. 1080p HD recording requires commercial video software (not included); Intel Quad Core 3.0 GHz (or higher) or compatible; and 4 GB RAM. Enclosed software supports 720p HD recording and video calls. HD display recommended.