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Leap Motion opens 3D touchless controller software to developers

Leap Motion's 3D motion controller is not scheduled to debut until 22 July, but the company is this week rolling out the latest version of its software to the developer community, so they can identify any last-minute problems.

"Thousands of developers around the globe will soon be testing the consumer experience to help smooth the rough edges and hunt for bugs," Leap Motion wrote in a blog post. "Over the next several weeks, our beta users will be testing Mac and PC operating system interactions, and Airspace, our app discovery platform."

Specifically, the beta program will let testers scroll and click using their fingers, while those on Windows 8 will be able to open and navigate Metro apps.

Airspace Home, meanwhile, houses all the Leap Motion apps as well as other apps that take advantage of the Leap Motion API - like Google Earth - so the company wants testers to try it out. It also includes an app store, so beta testers can tap into that, too.

To help users get started, an interactive tutorial will run after testers download the Leap Motion software to "help orient them to Leap Motion's field of view and the zone of interaction when using Leap Motion for the first time."

Leap introduced the 3 x 1in controller in May 2012, and it quickly garnered interest from more than 60,000 global developers. It includes a 150-degree field of view and the ability to track individual hands and all 10 fingers at up to 290 frames per second.

The company started taking pre-orders last year for $69.99 (£45) — slightly cheaper than its current sale price of $79.99 (£52).

In February, Leap said it would start shipping the controller to those who pre-ordered it on 13 May, but in April, the launch date got pushed back to 22 July.