back to article Logitech Bolt devices support secure Bluetooth Low Energy – but forget the 'Unifying Receiver'

Logitech has introduced a new range of business peripherals supporting Bolt, a secure Bluetooth Low Energy protocol - but they will not connect to the existing "Unifying Receiver". Logi Bolt is the company's new standard for connecting business peripherals wirelessly. Bolt devices have two modes. They can connect using …

  1. Andrew Scaife
    Thumb Down

    No thanks

    Much as I loved my old Trackman it eventually gave me de Quervain's, so now I use a RollerMouse. And that keyboard would not position correctly above it, so sorry Logitech. And yes, that icon would be painful...try the Finkelstein manoeuvre to test if you have de Quervain's, but gently or you'll be on the ceiling...

    1. J. Cook Silver badge

      Re: No thanks

      Huh. Never heard of that flavor of RSI, or that test. Thank you!

  2. Ochib


    Relevant XKCD

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Standards

      I think Logitech's entire business model must revolve around inventing a new fantastic receiver for the latest generation of products which is incompatible with all previous generations.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    USB C options?

    As the world is moving to USBC and we are starting to see fewer USB A ports on devices has Logitech now got an USB C receiver in the works?, or are we still expected to take what is a nice small receiver and have to have a few dongles to interface it to a laptop, or give up and keep using Bluetooth??

  4. Irongut

    Logitech gave up on the Unifying Reciever some time ago, I bought a keyboard last year that will not work with it.

    Ditto Logitech Options - I was very glad to see the back of that POS. The GHub software is better.

    1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge

      Dumpster Diving

      I have a number of Logitech culled mice from the disposal route*, with UNR's (I know right & re-paired as needed via the software) & also picked up 3 K850's from a Govt disposal location. Really handy as those KB's will sync to one of three paired UNR's.

      So this isn't likely to impact me for some time, but it really is a right PITA, that in the event I might have to buy new kit to have something that's not going to work with the rest of my salvaged stuff.

      *Actually kinda pissed that I let a M215 & UNR slip through my fingers for $1 in a thrift store the other week.

  5. Wolfclaw

    Logitech make worst peripherals, bought the G613 wireless Keyboard, G903 wireless mouse and wireless charging mat gaming combination, 2 years in, keyboard and mouse replaced, had to jump through RMA hoops. replacement mouse left mouse button again failing, cannot take the punishment of gaming. Never again !!

    1. phuzz Silver badge

      They used to make good stuff, but I've not heard good reviews for quite a few years now.

      1. Malcolm 1

        Their mice are still excellent, and I've been a happy user of their headsets for several years. I hear good things about some of their gaming keyboards, but all their "productivity" keyboards seem to have some compromise or another (still lamenting Microsoft discontinuing their "Comfort Curve" series... but that's another issue entirely).

      2. Peter2 Silver badge

        To be fair, I have an office full of their low end wired gear (eg K100, M100 etc), which is very good value for money compared to any of the competition at a similar price point.

        Most cheap stuff is pretty crap; with keyboards the legs break or keys die, mouse buttons/wheels break in normal use etc. With the Logitech stuff the biggest problem is that the lettering eventually wears off from many hundreds of thousands of keypresses.

    2. Daedalus

      Logitech's name first appeared on mice connected to those wonderful and sadly missed Apollo workstations, back in the 1980's. They were reliable and clearly not influenced by the usual marketing designeritis, unlike the products of Sun etc. Who, for instance, would invent and market an optical mouse that only worked on a special metal pad with a grid printed on it, sad pad being the size of an A5 notebook? Until recently, Logitech were a bastion of common sense, even if they did put out some multi-button monstrosities. You could still buy a basic mouse that didn't send you into warp drive if your thumb twitched.

      So it's depressing to find that, after all these years, the rot has begun to set in, and flash is replacing function, even though the hoi polloi are not longer in the market for these things and don't need to be impressed by cool shapes and blinkenlights. I just hope my current stock will last until somebody picks up the slack.

      1. Down not across

        unlike the products of Sun etc. Who, for instance, would invent and market an optical mouse that only worked on a special metal pad with a grid printed on it, sad pad being the size of an A5 notebook?

        Sun didn't invent it. Mouse Systems did. Sun only re-badged it. Not sure why the hate, I preferred it over the mechanical sticky ball mice of the day.

      2. Dan 55 Silver badge

        At that point I think all optical mice had to be on a shiny metal pad with a grid on it due to the kind of sensor used.

  6. elsergiovolador Silver badge

    All I can listen

    "proprietary channel hopping algorithm,"

    But could adversary listen and record all 40 channels at once and - the shock and horror - see all the proprietary hopping and then just recombine it offline?

    Can you imagine your handler seeing all your typos?

    1. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: All I can listen

      It's also encrypted, so no. The hopping is a minor advantage to throw off a basic listener, but the encryption is the important bit.

  7. Robert Grant

    > We also asked Mingori how many security incidents Logitech is aware of where insecure wireless connections to its peripherals were to blame. "Excellent question… I am relatively new to Logitech so I don't have that specific information," he said, promising to get back to us. We await further information both on this and on our multiple devices issue.

    Good job El Reg.

  8. fidodogbreath

    10 meters?

    Then again, Logitech claimed that "The Logi Bolt USB receivers provide a strong, reliable, drop-off-free connection up to 10 meters (33 feet)

    That's the same range they quote for the Unifying receiver. I've never had one of those work reliably at a distance of more than about 20-25 cm (8-10 in), and even then only with clear line of sight. With towers, I have to use a USB A male to female extension cable to get the receiver right up onto the desktop.

    My work laptop sits on my desk in my home office, but putting the receiver on the "far" side of the computer (where the USB-A ports are) is too far. The keyboard dropped keystrokes, the mouse missed clicks, etc. Had to use a short USB extension to bring the receiver around to center of the desk. Even then -- at 5-10 cm and with new batteries -- the keyboard was unreliable. Maybe the workstation-class laptop gives off too much EMI/RFI? Whatever the reason, I gave up on the Enraging Receiver stuff in favor of an old USB wired keyboard and a vintage MS Wireless Mouse.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 10 meters?

      I have (retrospectively) the same problem.

      Logitech Trackballs are the dog's proverbials, and I've been using them since the Trackman Marble in the 1990s.

      To be fair, I have never had a problem with the Trackmans or my current Ergo (apart from dying batteries), but the keyboards and repeating keys/missed strokes drive me nuts. It doesn't happen all the time, and since I got totally pissed off with Wi-Fi and wired as much stuff as I could it's been much less of a problem. I presume it's something to do with the Unifying Receiver working on 2.4GHz.

      Also to be fair, my MS Sculpt/Surface wireless keyboards on Bluetooth were a pain, too - even more so, because they went into standby at the first opportunity, so when you next use them there is a significant lag in key pickup (i.e. you have to hit a key twice in many cases after a period of inactivity). And they, too, relished in sometimes typing a row of multiple characters for reasons best known to themselves.

  9. Gene Cash Silver badge

    F*ck wireless

    Or you can avoid all this BS and just use a mouse with a damn cord with whatever flavor of USB you need. Bonus in that it doesn't need batteries!

    If I'm further than 3 feet from my PC, then I'm not going to be needing a mouse.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: F*ck wireless

      I basically agree with you. Wireless for keyboards ? Nonsense.

      But I very much like my rodents to be tether-free. I've had a Logitech G602 for years now and I'm very happy with it. I bought a G603 for my work laptop as well. No problems with either.

      1. John Sager

        Re: F*ck wireless

        I need a wireless mouse for the security camera recorder, which sits behind the TV. But I still need a USB extension lead to bring the receiver into a position where it works reliably to the mouse 3 metres away.

    2. Throatwarbler Mangrove Silver badge

      Re: F*ck wireless

      The point of wireless peripherals is to have fewer cords getting tangled or, in the case of a mouse, interfering with range of motion when the cord gets caught. I can also do things like take my keyboard off my desk and set it aside when I want to use the desk space for something else.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: F*ck wireless

      I wish Logitech did their wireless Ergos and top-end keyboards in wired versions (though the Ergo has been problem-free apart from having to recharge (or replace) the battery periodically).

      I fully agree with your sentiment, but there is no way I am going back to a normal mouse after using a trackball device for so long.

  10. Kenny Millar

    Can't really agree with your comments about the trackball being less easy to use, or less accurate.

    Like anything, it just takes a bit of getting used to. Once you've done that it's every bit as accurate as a mouse. I've used them since v1.

    Try using a finger-tip trackball with RSI of the wrist, or arthritis - then you'll appeciate the thumb operated one!

    1. Down not across

      I must've already killed my hands over the decades, as for me the thumb operated is excruciating, where as MX Master is actually quite comfortable to use. As is proper (read: old arcade style) trackball but those are somewhat harder to come by.

  11. legless82

    I have a fairly high-end Logitech wireless mouse, which I was about to return due to its horrible lag and jerky motion, until I pulled the Unifying Receiver out and just connected using my machine's onboard Bluetooth.

    Since then, no issues at all. It's been perfect. Since I can't remember the last time I used a machine without built-in Bluetooth, it makes me wonder why they even bother with that horrible receiver.

  12. Ian 55

    I adore the Logitech trackballs - much nicer than mice IF you are right handed for this - but the M570 suffers from the 'we know, but we don't care' problem of having seriously underspec'd switches for the main buttons: typically just after a year, they start registering clicks as double clicks.

    The MX Ergo ones are much better, but it would need knowing that they have improved the switches before I would advise anyone to go anywhere near the M575. Just in case.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Fully agree.

      I replaced the switches on my M570 for just that reason. It was a known issue, and there were lots of websites showing how to do it. The main issue was sourcing the microswitches - but the replacements were much better.

      The Ergo fixed the problem.

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