It’s been just more than a year since Leap Motion debuted a dazzling new gesture-based controller that many predicted would be the go-to tool for everyone from gamers to app and web designers to artists and musicians, giving them the ability to interact with screens through hand movements alone.
But now, four new startups are taking the tech to places no one had imagined, providing innovative applications to a diverse array of industries. Read on to discover four companies—all currently seeking investors—that will enable to them to leverage Leap Motion in surprising ways.
Florida-based Mirror Training, Inc. designs robotic arms to save lives on the battlefield, specifically for those tasked with defusing IEDs and other bombs. But the arms, as they are discovering, are slow and inefficient, exposing troops to dangerous situations. Now the team is using Leap Motion to create the Anthropomorphic Augmented Reality Controller (AARC) — a natural user interface that makes it easier, faster and safer to control those robotic arms. And the company hopes to expand the application beyond the battlefield, giving it to hazmat crews, search-and-rescue teams and other first responders domestically.
Headquartered in Alameda, California, MotionSavvy is currently beta testing a gesture-recognition software platform that allows deaf persons to communicate with those around them in real time. Essentially, the program translates sign language into speech, and Leap Motion is proving the crucial element. A prototype is already available to the consumer market via tablet-based software, and the company hopes to develop a smartphone case in the next two years to make it more portable.
Artists are always looking for new ways to be creative, so Crispy Driven Pixels has developed a native panel within Adobe Photoshop called Ethereal, which allows users to draw in the air and have their work register on screen. Artists can also quickly and easily access Photoshop’s myriad tools and features, all while never touching a mouse or keyboard.
Operating out of San Francisco and India, GetVu has built an augmented reality headset powered by the Leap Motion controller and an Android phone. Wearers can interact with virtual objects in an immersive context and 90-degree field of view, opening up near limitless possibilities for future applications including drag-and-drop imaging for new app development.