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ReTrak, popular in the US, are now selling their range of products in the UK at retailers such as PC World, Dixons and Amazon.

You may have come across retractable cables before – often found on portable mice for laptops, they wind excess cable into real which is suspended half way along the cable length. What ReTrak have done is improved upon this, added other new technologies and then created a huge range of products. Basically, what you get are a range of electrical accessories that take up as little space as possible.

Their range includes computer, visual and audio cables along with power supplies, headphones, iPhone and eBook products, mice and even a retractable mouse mat with built-in USB hub!

One of the items that most travellers with laptops will need is a mouse and ReTrak have a portable solution for that. Their Laser Travel Mouse is a small (but still comfortable in the hand) mouse, in a fetching combination of both matte and shiny grey, that has a built in retracting mechanism for hiding away the cable when not in use. It works equally well if you’re left or right handed and has the now-traditional 3 buttons (the scroll wheel being clickable).

For my own laptop I use a Bluetooth mouse but often find the connection erratic – you really can’t beat a wired mouse for rock solid use. ReTrak have provided a very thin cable with this mouse which means it, unlike traditionally wired mice, doesn’t get in the way. However, I did find that it tends to curl up as a consequence of this.

Underneath the mouse is a small compartment. You open this, retract the USB cable and then the compartment closes again – a thin slit in it allows the cable through. It couldn’t be any easier and the retracting mechanism, as always with ReTrak products, is smooth. The whole thing is 2.5ft in length when fully retracted.

In use the mouse is nice under the hand and moves well. It has a 1600 dpi precision and scans at 6700 fps, which is excellent. As with many ReTrak products it comes with an excellent 3 year warranty.

Reviews of the product on the PC World site shows the only downsides reported are the length of the lead (which is fine if using this with a laptop, but not with a desktop – but why would you? It’s designed for portability!) and, bizarrely, that the lead is thin.

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[review]Another cracking product from ReTrak. The mouse is excellent in use and the retractable cable gives you the convenience of a cordless mouse but without the connection issues. Normally this would cost £19.99 but can currently be bought from PC World for less than £5 – an absolute bargain![/review]