The computer mouse is beginning to seem like an endangered species, thanks to Microsoft's new Windows 7 operating system, which supports the most advanced touchscreen capabilities. In a race to keep up with the system, hardware companies are introducing sleek offerings that operate with the press of a finger. Here are six that we like.
The Archos 9 tablet has a 9-inch screen yet weighs less than 2 pounds. It doesn't support multitouch gestures like pinching or zooming, but it has a large onscreen keyboard for tapping out Web addresses and e-mails. It also comes with a 1.3-megapixel webcam for video chats. COST: $500 for a 1.2GHz Intel Atom processor, 1GB of RAM, and a 60GB hard drive
The new TouchSmart doesn't seem much different from its predecessor until you touch its 12.1-inch display. The 4.65-pound convertible tablet features touch-enabled apps such as Twitter and Hulu and lets you organize photos, play games, and check the weather with a finger flick. COST: Starting at $799 for a 2.2GHz AMD Turion X2 processor, 3GB of RAM, and a 320GB hard drive
Lenovo's new SimpleTap application lets you double tap anywhere on the ThinkPad's 14-inch screen to launch a control panel and adjust the settings on the 4.5-pound PC or put it to sleep. You can create shortcut tiles and rearrange them with a flick. The best feature: the screen's antifingerprint coating. COST: $1,999 for an Intel Core Duo 2 processor, 2GB of RAM, and a 120GB hard drive
The sequel to the ASUS T91 has multitouch capability and double the storage space, and it comes loaded with ASUS's new TouchGate software. The 2.1-pound netbook has a touch-friendly Web browser and a 3-D interface that lets you flick among three floating panels on the 9-inch screen. COST: $459 for a 1.33GHz Intel Atom 2520 processor and 32GB of solid-state storage
This versatile 4.5-pound tablet lets you use either a pen (for writing, editing, or annotating) or your finger (for zooming, rotating, or flicking) on its 13.3-inch screen. Thanks to a bidirectional hinge, the tablet easily converts into a notebook when you want to use a full-size keyboard. COST: $1,859 for an Intel Core Duo 2.4GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, and an 80GB hard drive
Touch is a bonus on this sleek 4.7-pound notebook, which has a 13.3-inch LED display that takes full advantage of Windows 7's multifinger gestures. It also includes a backlit keyboard for old-fashioned typing and USB ports that can charge gadgets even when the laptop is asleep. COST: $1,049 for a 2.2GHz Intel Core Duo T6600 processor, 4GB of RAM, and a 500GB hard drive