Google Buys Hand-Gesture Software Company Flutter for $40M

The company offers an app for Apple's Mac computers


google sign close up 630Sources tell TechCrunch that Google (GOOG) paid about $40 million to acquire Flutter, a startup company that develops gesture-recognition technology for movie devices.

The deal was announced on Flutter’s website. The company indicated that it will continue to offer its current webcam gesture app for Apple‘s (AAPL) Mac computers even after it becomes part of Google. The purchase suggests that Google may plan to add gesture control to its mobile devices, possibly including Android smartphones and Google Glass headgear.

2013 Google Glass Tour Kicks Off in Durham
2013 Google Glass Tour Kicks Off in Durham

Google’s move comes after Flutter was rumored to have postponed a planned new product launch in August. The company received $1.4 million in seed funding in 2012 as part of a Y Combinator.

A number of technology companies are adding gesture controls to consumer electronics products, including Microsoft (MSFT), which has added motion control to its Xbox consoles with its Kinect sensor.

Leap Motion has developed a similar add-on device that brings gesture detection to computers.

Shares of Google rose modestly in Thursday morning trading.

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