Leap Motion, a company that specializes in an extremely accurate, gesture-based input device by the same name, announced this past Thursday that it raised a whopping $30 Million dollars in funding and will be partnering with well-known computer manufacturer, ASUS, to expand its distribution channels once the motion-sensing controller is ready to hit the market.
The company, now run by former Apple iAd executive, Andy Miller (who currently acts as the firm’s President and COO), expects to work with Asus to bundle the motion controller with specific all-in-one PCs and high-end laptops produced by the manufacturer. The news is corroborated by Leap Motion’s co-founder and CEO, Michael Buckwald, who stated that bundling the controller with existing products and even integrating the controller into new devices are part of Leap’s early distribution strategy.
Moreover, Miller said that some developers are adding the Leap Motion gesture technology into existing software while others are building apps from scratch tailored to the 3D motion tech. Miller stated, “As [the Leap Motion] app store matures, we’ll start to see the ratio shift towards apps that are built from the ground up, that are created and designed with this in mind.”
Originally, a Series A round of funding led by Highland Capital, (the firm at which Miller became a general partner after leaving Apple in 2011), garnered Leap an impressive $12.75 Million. But the momentum hasn’t slowed a bit as backers of the startup appear to be in favor of the plan. Just recently, a second round of funding led by venture capital firm Founders Fund brought in $30 Million, fulfilling Leap’s operating, research and development costs.
Adding to the news, Techcrunch reports that the newly-formed Asus partnership is just one of many alliances that Leap has been working on for when its unique device launches sometime within the next few months.
Perhaps Leap will partner with even more computer manufacturers in the near future?
The Leap Motion Controller will enable users to create 8-cubic-feet of what the company considers “3D interaction space” in front of their Mac or PC. Customers can pre-order the device now on the company’s website for $69.99.
If you’d like to see what all the fuss is about, the video above – (taken from the company’s YouTube channel) – shows a user interacting with on-screen content using just hand and finger movements. The apps shown in the demo encompass anything a computer user would normally interact with, including: web pages, 3D modeling applications, and even video games – all controlled by natural hand gestures.