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 Remember when slab-like keyboards just kept getting bigger and bigger, with evermore features and buttons? No longer, as Microsoft slims things down for the Windows 8 portable and tablet generation.

Would You Like Your Peripherals Sculpted or Wedged?

Microsoft's hardware division is 30-years old and gets to celebrate with a total revamp of some essential products for the Windows 8 launch. Two pairs of peripherals, among other extras, will be hitting the shelves ahead of the October 26 date to help users work better with their tablets or other devices on the go.

Both offering Bluetooth communication, they could help improve productivity and gradually take over from on-screen inputs for long-form data entry. First up is Wedge range (pictured below) which goes a little more avant garde on the style side, offering a distinct look for business users and consumers tapping away at their mobile devices. 

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The wedge keyboard comes with a cover that can be used as a stand for your tablet, while the mouse should work on almost any surface. Expect them to fly off the shelves as users look for that something extra to go with their hardware. The Wedge keyboard will retail for US$79.95 and the mouse for $69.95

Sculpting Away

The Sculpt peripherals look a little more traditional, with the lines from the desktop Curve range making it into a more portable format. There's a battery power indicator on the upper-right corner and the mouse supports Windows 8 gestures to move around Metro with ease. 

 

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The Sculpt products will cost $49.95 each, with no word on an exact release date, but you can read a more about the new peripherals via fact sheets and see some further pictures on a Windows blog post