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Reading news through gestures: New York Times to release Leap Motion app

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The New York Times HQ logo (1020)
The New York Times HQ logo (1020)

The New York Times has shown that it's not shy about embracing young technology. The newspaper of record was quick to produce its own Google Glass app, and now it's been revealed that the Times will have a gesture-based Top News app ready when Leap Motion launches on July 22nd. TechCrunch reveals that, when paired with the Leap Motion controller on Mac or PC, the upcoming software will let readers navigate between stories by moving their hands left or right. Hovering over an article will open the full text, though the method of scrolling currently being used — moving your finger in a circular motion — could quickly prove tiresome.

The app is targeted at early adopters rather than any mainstream audience; the fact that it displays only the day's top stories (with no deeper access for New York Times digital subscribers) is evidence of that. Still, when Leap goes on sale at Best Buy and other retail channels next week, the Times will be the sole news app available at launch. General manager of core digital products Paul Smurl tells TechCrunch that there's a "clear line of sight" towards a more comprehensive app — and eventual monetization if Leap Motion's futuristic controller catches on with consumers.