Tote-Remote, Cordless Presenter and Cordless PC presenters

If you often present PowerPoint slides, you've probably yearned to be untethered from your laptop. Atek Electronics' Tote-Remote and Logitech's versatile Cordless Presenter give you the freedom to conduct a presentation without touching a keyboard -- leaving you less remote and more in control.

About the size of a small TV remote, the $500 Cordless Presenter can use either USB or Bluetooth wireless technology to provide full scroll-wheel mouse capabilities; the unit can also function as a laser pointer. The somewhat simpler $US80 Tote-Remote doesn't double as a mouse, but it does have three buttons for navigating remotely through presentations and for laser pointing. After I connected each of their key-size USB transmitters, both performed nicely up to nine metres away from my notebook.

Of the two units, I instantly preferred the Logitech. Though it requires software installation (the Atek doesn't), the Cordless Presenter is handy and comfortable to use either as a wireless optical mouse or as a remote control. A switch on its underside allows you to toggle quickly from mouse to presentation functionality, and an off switch lets you conserve the two included AA batteries.

Powered by an included button lithium battery, the Atek seems pricey for a laser pointer with one button to mimic the principal control keys for PowerPoint slide shows. It did work as soon as I plugged in its USB RF receiver, though, and it fits snugly in one hand.

Either of these devices will give you more control. But the Logitech Cordless Presenter, while expensive, keeps working for you even after your presentation is done.

Atek Electronics Tote-Remote

Useful but overpriced USB remote-control pointer.

Price: $US79.95.

URL: www.atek.com.

Logitech Cordless Presenter

Uses USB or Bluetooth to splendidly drive a combo remote-control pointer/optical mouse.

Price: $499.95.

Phone: (02) 9972 3711.

URL: www.logitech.com.

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