Accessories to Complete Your Working From Home Set Up

Hannah Bell By Hannah Bell - March 22nd, 2023
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I love being able to work from home. Avoiding the commute. Being able to pop on a load of washing during my workday rather than in the evening or at the weekend (let’s be real, this takes up way less time than all the chats you have in the communal kitchen!). And I find I’m much more focused and productive because I’m clearly just a real sucker for workplace chit chat. However, when I first started working from home, I felt like I aged a few decades in my first week. My back hurt. My neck hurt. I was having to wave my hands about at regular intervals to prevent them from cramping up. Could this have been because I was huddled over a 13.5” laptop at my kitchen table for at least seven hours of the day? Surely not!

To help create a better work life balance and give my household the kitchen table back, I decided to invest in my working from home space. I’ve said it before (Must-Have Accessories: Surface Dock 2) and I’ll say it again, adding the right accessories can elevate your PC experience. For me, adding an external monitor, the Surface Dock 2, an ergonomic keyboard and mouse and an external webcam to a dedicated workspace with a comfy chair was an absolute game changer for my productivity and comfort! Let’s take a closer look at some of the PC accessories I use to elevate my working from home experience.

Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop – Keyboard, Number Pad and Mouse Combo

Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop Combo
This combo includes an ergonomic keyboard, mouse and number pad
Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard
The keyboard is designed how your body sits naturally in a relaxed position

I used one of these in my first ever full-time job and it kind of made my desk look and feel a bit like a spaceship. I understand that ergonomic keyboards look a bit daunting and confusing, but they’re designed around how your body sits naturally in a relaxed position. The split keyboard layout that keeps wrists and forearms in a relaxed position, and a cushioned palm rest to provide wrist support. The natural arc keyboard layout follows the curve of your fingertips for a more natural way of typing and the reverse tilt design positions the keyboard at the correct angle to give you a straight, neutral wrist position. This keyboard features Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) technology, which is designed to help protect your information by encrypting your keystrokes. Each keyboard is permanently paired with its receiver at the factory-no key information is ever shared over the air. This desktop combo comes with an external number pad, which is amazing because I know a lot of people miss having these on their laptop. And this combo also comes with the Sculpt Ergonomic Mouse which is also shaped to encourage a more natural hand, wrist, and forearm posture, to help prevent the pain of repetitive stress injuries. All of these connect to your devices with a USB-A received to deliver the Advanced Encryption Standard.

Microsoft Wireless Ergonomic Mouse

Microsoft Wireless Ergonomic Mouse
Two programmable buttons can be customised in Microsoft's Keyboard & Mouse Centre
Microsoft Wireless Ergonomic Mouse
This mouse can pair up to 3 devices at once, each with their own profile

While I have a lot of love for the Sculpt Ergonomic mouse, I have chosen to opt for the Wireless Ergonomic Mouse as my daily mouse on my desk for an oddly specific reason. This mouse can pair up to 3 devices at once, each with their own profile assigned. All I need to do it press the Bluetooth connect button on the bottom and it will switch which paired device it’s connected to. This means I can use this seamlessly between my work and personal device. This Bluetooth mouse also has an ergonomic design to promote using a more natural hand position. Navigate precisely and access your most-used features with two programmable buttons which you can customise in the Microsoft Keyboard and Mouse centre (highly recommend checking this app out for any of your new or existing Microsoft accessories!) and it can also hold its charge for up to 15 months, of course depending on how much you use it.

Microsoft Modern Webcam

To really feel connected in a hybrid working environment, I think a high-quality webcam is important. Talking to little circles on a screen, doesn’t always have the same impact as seeing someone’s face while you’re talking to them.  My personal favourite part of this webcam is the mounting system, a large part of my job is talking to new products from Microsoft, so having a webcam I can mount to my external monitor, my laptop, my desk or even screw into a tripod is so useful so I can show off products, rather than just talk about them. The cable is 1.5m so I can play around with my angles, the camera has a 78 degree field of view and connects to my device through USB – A and the webcam is designed to sit as close to eye level as possible to provide a natural and personable experience.

The Microsoft Modern Webcam helps me to look my best with the 1080p HD camera with HDR and True Look functionality that delivers facial retouch and auto light adjustment and also has a built in privacy shutter and an LED status light so I can see at a glance when it’s in use or make extra sure I’m not accidentally going to turn it on in a meeting if I’m sitting at my desk in my pyjamas!

Microsoft Bluetooth Ocean Mouse

Microsoft Bluetooth Ocean Mouse
This eco-friendly mouse is made with 20% recycled plastic from the ocean
Microsoft Bluetooth Ocean Mouse
Plastic is recovered from oceans and waterways, cleaned, and processed into recyclable plastic resin pellets

And one last bonus item – you may have noticed I’m a bit of a mouse connoisseur (not really, I just really appreciate a good mouse!) and I like to have a mouse that I keep on my desk at home and another that I keep in my bag for days I go into the office, or out events or meetings. The Ocean Plastic Mouse currently lives in my bag and is a small, but important step forward in Microsoft’s sustainability journey. The shell of this eco-friendly mouse is made with 20% recycled ocean plastic. Recycled ocean plastic is made from plastic waste that is recovered from oceans and waterways, cleaned, and processed into recyclable plastic resin pellets. These recycled pellets are blended in during the materials development process that makes the shell of the Ocean Plastic Mouse. You can get up to 12 months of battery life out of 1 AA battery, the packaging is 100% recyclable and I really love the unique design of this mouse and the importance of what it represents.

Choosing the right PC accessories can really elevate your work from home experience. Check out these and more at the Microsoft brand store!

Written By

Hannah Bell

Master Trainer on behalf of Microsoft New Zealand. Empowering people to get the most out of their tech since ages ago!

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