In this post I want to take a look at the Logitech M720 mouse after having used it for 2.5 years.
Specs and durability
The specs are pretty common for a mouse you get today, so lets start with the special features:
- There are side buttons, which I find pretty handy for navigating front/ back in the browser or a file manager
- It can be paired with up to 3 devices at the same time, which makes it easy to use with your PC, Laptop and Tablet
- It supports both Bluetooth LE and the Logitech Wireless Receiver
- It is powered by a single, replaceable AA battery
Especially the last two points make this seem to be future-proof product that you can use for a long time.
Logitech is currently replacing their Wireless Receiver dongles by Logitech Bolt, so in the near future the Wireless Receivers will go away. But thanks to the Bluetooth support you will still be able to use the mouse without having to occupy a USB port just for using it.
Then, using standard AA batteries means that you just use some nice rechargeable ones. This means that you will never have to wait for the mouse to charge and that the mouse can out-live the battery. As you are probably aware from using your phone, rechargeable batteries wear-out over time until the device cannot be properly used any more.
So we finally got a mouse for the years to come? Well..
Unfortunately, Logitech made some design decision that drastically shorten the life-span of the device, even though they must have known better.
The most obvious one is likely the rubber coating of the mouse.
I took the images for this post after cleaning the mouse. So the dirt you see there is not the skin from my greasy hands, but rather said rubber coating disintegrating.
This is caused by your sweat which is slightly acidic and thus takes hold of the rubber.
There is a reason that Gamepads do not have such coating, even though having good grip is even more important there.
Also, the way the coating is used here, all it does is making the mouse look greasy after some time.
The less obvious issue are the used switches i.e. the things that perform the clicks.
Did you ever notice that after some time your mouse does incorrect double clicks or releases the click while drag and dropping on its own? Well, that means the switch starts wearing out.
The mouse uses OMRON D2FC-F-7N micro-switches in a cheap variant that is only rated for 10 million clicks (10M). While this sounds a lot, it yields to 6850 clicks/ per day for 4 years, which is not all that much if you think about playing a shooter or using photoshop.
The crazy part is that going for the 20M rated variant (2x the durability) only costs 50 ct more (pack of 5 on amazon). This would make the mouse merely 1€ more expensive – probably way less even as Logitech can negotiate bulk discounts on these things.
Given that the mouse is priced at 50€, I do not think we can pass this off as cost optimization.
Note, that even more expensive Logitech Mice, like the MX Master have the rubber coating issue and use the same cheap 10M rated switches.