In a surprise move, Google has reportedly acquired Bump Technologies, a Canadian startup whose innovative BumpTop software transforms one's generic, two-dimensional desktop into a 3D navigable environment where users can toss files and folders around, stack them in related piles and "hang" them on virtual walls. The software is fully compatible with multi-touch gesturing and works with both Windows and Mac OS X systems.
Neither company has disclosed the terms of the deal, but in a letter posted on their website Bump Technologies said it would keep its software available for download for one more week, before the tool is presumably pulled. Those who have already picked up BumpTop's $30 professional edition will receive end-of-life support throughout BumpTop's transition. However, all downloads and support for the product will end on June 1.
Google's acquisition of BumpTop could be a sign that the search giant is looking to take on Apple's widely popular iPhone smartphone and iPad tablet with a significantly different approach to the user experience.