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Gimmicky apps certainly have their place on our iPhones. At some point, we've all been suckered into plunking down our hard-earned pennies for an app that seemed like a great idea (iBeer, iSteam, etc), but ultimately they end up in one of those folders that rarely gets opened – or worse, deleted outright. Cycloramic might not seem like it belongs in that class, but after a few attempts to make a panoramic photo, it becomes clear that this phone-spinning app is mostly a short-lived diversion.
And while it works with all current incarnations of the iPhone, you'll really miss out on the fun if you don't have an iPhone 5. With the newest model of the iPhone, you can operate in hands-free mode, which uses the device's built-in vibration to rotate the handset when placed speaker side-down on a table. It's pretty cool when it works, but even the recommended surfaces – granite and glass – didn't produce the smoothest results. I often needed to nudge the phone during the spin cycle, and rarely did I produce a photo that was worth keeping.
I fared better with an iPhone 4S, which prompts you to hold and pan like Apple's own iOS 6 feature, but I kept going back to the iPhone 5, hoping for better results. I rarely got them, but it was certainly fun to watch it spin. Cycloramic does offer panoramic video functionality, but the finished product isn't all that different from launching the Camera app, switching to video, and slowly spinning in a circle.
The bottom line. Maybe it was useful before Apple released a far superior panoramic feature in iOS 6, but at least Cycloramic is good for a party trick.
iPhone running iOS 6.0 or later
Spins your upright iPhone 5 around using vibration motors. Fun, albeit short-lived gimmick.
Didn't always work well, despite using recommended surfaces. Resulting photos rarely worth keeping. Apple's own panoramic photo feature yields much better results.