We’re well into the first 36 hours of YouTube’s first official Comedy...
How Can Leap’s New Motion Controller Top Kinect PCs?
On Monday, motion recognition company Leap Motion emerged from stealth mode, prepared to offer a cheap motion-sensing peripheral into a PC market that should, by rights, be dominated by Microsoft’s Kinect peripheral.
On Monday, motion recognition company Leap Motion emerged from stealth mode, prepared to offer a cheap motion-sensing peripheral into a market that should, by rights, be dominated by Microsoft’s Kinect peripheral.
Coincidentally, Microsoft on Monday also released the Kinect for Windows 1.5, designed to woo developers with improved skeletal tracking as well as Kinect Studio, a tool that will let developers record how users use the Kinect peripheral.
Leap, meanwhile, demonstrated its $69.99 USB peripheral running on a Mac monitor, perhaps a subtle message that it might be for the Mac what Kinect might eventually end with on the PC.
In a blog designed to lure developers, Leap described its peripheral as a “revolutionary piece of hardware no larger than your iPod that’s two hundred times more accurate than any product currently on the market,” the company said. “We believe that with The Leap, tomorrow we will no longer be tethered to hardware. With The Leap, imaginations will run wild, and possibilities will be endless. Cheesy marketing speak, you say? Perhaps. But at Leap Motion, we believe strongly and passionately that software can change the world. We believe you shouldn’t have to break the bank to make powerful software using powerful technology. We believe in possibility. And we cannot wait to see what the future will bring to the world of natural user interface and gesture control.”
Leap claims its technology is accurate down to a 1/100th of a millimeter, tracking movement through 8 cubic feet, according to the company. The device is sensitive enough to determine the presence of fingers and hands, as well as handheld objects such as a pencil. A demonstration video, embedded below, shows that the Leap can be used from anything from navigating maps to even playing first-person shooter games.
The developer kits will ship soon, Leap said, while the device itself will be available for consumers this winter in limited quantities.
Motion sensing has long been the province of games, with the Nintendo Wii, then the Sony PlayStation 3 and then Microsoft bringing the technology to game consoles. The developer behind the Kinect Technology, PrimeSense, has said previously that it could bring its technology to PCs.
Leap, for its part, claims that it is working with numerous partners. “In the consumer electronics space for example, we expect to integrate our technology into tablets, smart phones, laptops and game systems,” it said.
Although consumers could still choose to adopt Leap’s USB peripheral over an integrated Microsoft solution, Leap may still have an uphill battle within the PC.
By Mark Hachman, PCMag