Cycloramic: What Happened After Shark Tank

Cycloramic: What Happened After Shark Tank

In this article, we will delve into the fascinating journey of Cycloramic, a panoramic photo app that gained significant attention after its appearance on the popular TV show Shark Tank. We will explore what transpired after Cycloramic’s pitch to the sharks, the impact the show had on the company’s sales and growth, and the subsequent developments in its journey.

Discover how Cycloramic capitalized on the exposure, secured investments from the sharks, and navigated the ever-changing landscape of the mobile app market. Join us as we unravel the story of Cycloramic and explore what unfolded after its moment in the Shark Tank spotlight.

What Is Cycloramic?

Cycloramic was a remarkable application available for iOS and Windows Phone devices, which introduced a unique functionality that allowed Apple iPhones and compatible Windows Phones to autonomously rotate a full 360 degrees [1].

This incredible feature was achieved by cleverly manipulating the phone’s vibrator, operating at a specific undisclosed frequency, resulting in the device spinning around its vertical axis. The app leveraged the integrated gyroscope, compass, and accelerometer to accurately track the rotation angle while capturing stunning panoramic images.

In addition to its impressive panoramic capabilities, Cycloramic also offers a valuable post-processing feature. With this functionality, users have the ability to transform their panoramic images into captivating 24-second videos, opening up exciting possibilities for creative applications.

This innovative application utilizes patented technology to detect the placement of an iPhone or iPad on a level surface. Once detected, it leverages the device’s vibration motor to initiate a seamless rotation at a rate of one revolution per second. This autonomous rotation allows Cycloramic to effortlessly capture a full 360-degree panorama, requiring no further input from the user.

What Is Cycloramic?

The result is an impressive and uninterrupted image, which can be conveniently saved directly to your device’s library or easily shared with friends across various social media platforms.

Cycloramic is a remarkable app that revolutionizes panoramic photography by eliminating the need to physically move the camera. It gained notable recognition when it was featured on the popular show Shark Tank in 2013, attracting investment from renowned entrepreneur Mark Cuban.

The app harnesses the built-in gyroscope of the iPhone to precisely rotate the phone while capturing photos, seamlessly stitching them together to create a stunning panoramic image. Notably, Cycloramic is available for both iPhone and Android devices, ensuring a wide range of users can enjoy its capabilities.

Cycloramic offers both a free and a paid version.  The free version allows users to capture panoramic photos of up to 5 megapixels. On the other hand, the paid version, priced at $ 1.99, removes the megapixel limitation and introduces an HDR mode for capturing even more impressive photos [2].

Whether you opt for the free or paid version, Cycloramic presents an effortless and user-friendly solution for capturing exceptional panoramic photos. With its seamless rotation and feature-rich functionality, it stands as an excellent choice for anyone seeking a convenient way to capture stunning panoramic images.

An update released on June 22, 2013, brought further enhancements to the application, introducing a range of features that allow users to store, edit, and effortlessly share their panoramic pictures. These additions ensure that Cycloramic provides a comprehensive and seamless user experience, empowering individuals to fully explore the potential of their panoramic creations.

About the Founders Of Cycloramic

Bruno Francois, a reinvigorated entrepreneur based in Atlanta, embarked on the creation of the Cycloramic, also known as the Car360 app [3]. With a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering and a Master of Science degree in computer science, he possessed a strong academic foundation.

Previously serving as the president of a family-owned business specializing in building materials, Bruno made the bold decision to leave his job and fully dedicate himself to his inventions. Drawing from his previous success, partnerships, and the millions of downloads garnered by Cycloramic, he ventured into new territories, introducing innovative concepts like Car360.

In 2017, when Car360 was showcased, the CEO of Carvana expressed a keen interest, offering a remarkable $ 22 million to acquire both the product and the company. As a result, Bruno assumed a prominent role, joining the board of directors at Carvana as an executive director.

About the Founders Of Cycloramic

Bruno’s motivation to develop his software stemmed from observing the viral success of various applications. Inspired by the likes of Angry Birds and Foursquare, he believed he had the potential to create something equally compelling.

In 2011, at the age of 40, Bruno made the daring choice to leave his job, determined to build something impactful despite facing financial constraints. His mission was to challenge the notion that “there’s an app for everything”, recognizing the fallacy in that belief.

Cycloramic emerged as Bruno’s solution to capturing immersive 360-degree images with the iPhone, even as his funds dwindled in 2012. He took the initiative to email a concise film and summary to approximately 20 reporters and influential figures within the technology industry. One notable recipient, Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, was captivated by the concept.

Within a week of its release on the app store, Steve Jobs, another Apple co-founder, shared a 360-degree video of himself captured using Cycloramic on social media. This exposure resulted in a significant surge in app store downloads. Bruno recognized the need for financial investment to further market and develop the app, prompting him to seek cash investors.

The Cycloramic concept sprouted from Bruno’s observation of his phone gliding smoothly across a flat surface. This sparked his curiosity about the potential monetization of this phenomenon.

By skillfully manipulating vibration patterns, Bruno began rotating his phone while balanced on its flat edge, ultimately pioneering a hands-free approach to panoramic photography and filming.

The concept was captivating, intuitive, and endearing, as it utilized the existing features of smartphones to offer users a fresh and exciting experience. The product’s mere usage initiated a viral effect, captivating the imagination of onlookers who eagerly purchased the app upon returning home. Within just one week of its launch, Cycloramic recorded an astonishing 100,000 downloads [4]. As a result, both Egos Ventures and Cycloramic garnered high praise and numerous accolades throughout 2012 and 2013.

Bruno received a personal email from the esteemed Steve Wozniak, often referred to as “The Woz”, a prominent figure in Apple’s history, who described the app as “astonishing, whimsical, and simultaneously practical”.

Despite the initial success, Bruno grappled with concerns about security and limited connections. While Cycloramic showcased versatility, he recognized the potential for implementing a wide range of business models to further enhance its appeal.

The Pitch Of Cycloramic At Shark Tank

Bruno stepped into the Shark Tank with the goal of securing funding of ninety thousand dollars in exchange for a five percent stake in his company, Cycloramic. He pitched it as a hands-free and tripod-free solution for capturing panoramic photos. To demonstrate, Bruno activated the app and used it to take a panoramic photo of the sharks in the tank. Initially, the sharks were puzzled as Bruno used a base to create a smooth surface for the app.

The Pitch Of Cycloramic At Shark Tank

To clarify, Bruno explained that the phone was rotating on its own. He then conducted another demonstration closer to the sharks, which immediately changed the mood in the room from confusion to delight. Kevin and Daymond even posed for the camera, with Daymond expressing his desire to buy the product.

Bruno highlighted that Cycloramic was fully autonomous and required no additional accessories. He explained that the app utilized a phone’s vibration, gyroscope, and compass to ensure smooth rotation. It could function on any smooth surface without the need for any external accessory. Concerns regarding intellectual property were raised by Lori, but Bruno assured her that he owned a utility patent.

Moving on to sales, Bruno revealed that the app was priced at one dollar and had already generated around six hundred sixty thousand downloads, resulting in a profit of one hundred seventy-five thousand dollars. He aimed to achieve a revenue of one million dollars by the end of 2013.

Although the sharks were impressed with the app, the valuation of Cycloramic remained a point of concern. Daymond inquired about the basis for the valuation. Bruno acknowledged the challenge of determining a specific value for a start-up without prior investments. However, he emphasized that Cycloramic was completely unique compared to other offerings in the market. Lori swiftly made an offer, appreciating Bruno’s ingenuity and referring to Cycloramic as a “mega-watt hero.” She proposed an investment of two hundred thousand dollars in exchange for a ten percent stake in the business.

Within just three-and-a-half minutes in the tank, Bruno already had an offer that exceeded his initial valuation. However, he continued to sell the sharks on his product, mentioning the development of a base that could be used with any cell phone. This created confusion for Lori, who had made an offer and threatened to retract it if Bruno considered other offers.

Mark saw Bruno’s hesitation as an opportunity and stressed the importance of investor familiarity with this type of technology. While Lori urged Mark to make an actual offer, he preferred to learn more about Bruno’s vision for the business and its potential avenues. When Bruno mentioned the potential of gaming for new product development, Mark revealed his involvement as an investor in a gaming company, positioning himself as a valuable partner.

Before Mark could make an offer, Daymond interjected, increasing his initial offer to two hundred fifty thousand dollars for a 10% stake. As Bruno weighed the options between Daymond and Mark, Kevin made his move. Kevin predicted that Bruno might want to build a separate business around this specific technology, implying that giving up equity at an early stage might not be the best choice.

Instead, he proposed a royalty deal of ninety thousand dollars for a fifteen percent stake. Mark disagreed with Kevin’s view of app and tech companies, advocating for a partnership that would support ongoing research and development. In an attempt to assert his value, Kevin mentioned his experience as a professional photographer.

Noticing the growing competition, Steve sought to join Lori’s deal. They matched Daymond’s offer of two hundred fifty thousand dollars while offering the advantage of working with two sharks [5]. Bruno now had two equivalent equity offers and a royalty deal on the table. Considering Kevin’s offer, Bruno inquired about the potential applications of Cycloramic. Kevin responded vaguely, expressing willingness to support whatever direction Bruno desired.

Seeking a strategic partner who could offer specific advice, Bruno recognized that Mark had been the only one to fulfill that role so far. Mark made an offer of one million dollars for a thirty percent stake, which had the highest investment and valuation. Daymond raised his offer to three hundred thousand dollars for ten percent, offering a smaller amount of equity. Each shark was willing to pay a premium.

Lori framed the decision as a matter of connections rather than money, with Steve agreeing, emphasizing his valuable connections in the sports and entertainment industries. However, Mark challenged this notion, suggesting that the sharks should demonstrate their understanding of the product. If they didn’t comprehend it, their advisory role would hold no value. Kevin, realizing that his royalty deal was losing its appeal, proposed a different arrangement.

Founders Of Cycloramic

He offered an initial investment of two hundred thousand dollars for a ten percent stake, but after recouping the investment, he would relinquish an additional five percent equity. Steve and Lori matched Kevin’s offer but increased it to two hundred fifty thousand dollars. Daymond countered with an offer of three hundred fifty thousand dollars for a twelve percent stake, adjusting his valuation due to the bidding war.

Despite the escalating offers that nearly doubled Bruno’s initial valuation, he remained cautious. He acknowledged Mark’s technical expertise and Lori’s experience with patents and inventions. Would they consider teaming up? After realizing the need for each other to secure a deal, Mark and Lori eventually agreed to collaborate. Before settling on a final number, Steve spoke up, expressing his willingness to join Lori’s deal.

They matched Daymond’s offer and had the added advantage of working with two sharks. Bruno now had two equivalent equity offers and a royalty deal, with Steve, Kevin, and Daymond trying to organize a competing offer. However, Lori intervened and declared a pause, stating that they were about to close a deal.

Bruno was on the verge of acceptance but was unhappy with Mark’s decrease in Cycloramic’s valuation. Mark, wanting to seal the deal, remarked that it wasn’t worth nitpicking over small details. Bruno hesitated, but the deal was not getting any better.

Mark pressed for a final decision, prompting Bruno to accept the deal of fifteen percent for five hundred thousand dollars. The room had mixed reactions, with Mark, Lori, and Bruno being excited about the future prospects of Cycloramic [6].

Cycloramic At Shark Tank

On the other hand, Steve, Daymond, and Kevin were less thrilled. Kevin expressed bitterness, suggesting that his deal would have been more favorable for Bruno. He even made a remark about Bruno potentially regretting his decision. However, it was Daymond who appeared disappointed, resulting in tears.

Cycloramic After The Shark Tank

Cycloramic was honored with a prestigious “Pogie Award for the Brightest Ideas of 2012” by David Pogue, a renowned columnist specializing in personal technology at The New York Times [7].

This innovative app also caught the attention of influential tech journalists who marveled at the iPhone’s captivating “dance” orchestrated by Cycloramic. One such notable figure, Steve Wozniak, went so far as to film himself using the app and described it as “unforeseen, imaginative, and simultaneously practical”.

Upon its release in December 2012, the application garnered an impressive 100,000 downloads within a mere week. Egos Ventures, the driving force behind Cycloramic, has since been recognized as one of the Top 10 Innovative Companies in Georgia. Their groundbreaking creation was showcased at the esteemed 2013 Georgia Technology Summit (GTS) held on March 20, 2013.

The initial version (1.0) of Cycloramic revolutionized the concept of panoramic visuals by generating captivating videos rather than mere pictures. Building upon this success, the subsequent 2.0 version introduced a photo mode, enabling users to capture stunning panoramic photos alongside videos.

With the advent of the 2.1 version, users gained the option to convert their panoramic photos into mesmerizing 24-second movies. The highly anticipated version 3.0 update enriched the app’s functionality by incorporating an in-app photo library complete with powerful editing features. This empowered users to make individual modifications to the original set of 14 images that formed the panoramic composition. 

Additionally, the update facilitated the seamless sharing of both panoramas and individual images through various social media platforms. It’s important to note that using Cycloramic requires the acquisition of a separate mount, ensuring optimal user experience.

Prior to his appearance on “Shark Tank”, Cycloramic had amassed approximately 660,000 downloads and generated total revenue of around $ 175,000. Francois set his sights on achieving $ 1 million in sales for the upcoming fiscal year.

However, the outcome exceeded all expectations.

In 2019, Francois made a return to the “Shark Tank” stage during Season 10 to provide an update on the remarkable progress of Cycloramic. Immediately following the broadcast of his initial episode, Cycloramic experienced the legendary “Shark Tank surge”, propelling it to the coveted number one position on iTunes. This extraordinary boost led to an impressive $ 1.5 million in sales.

Nevertheless, Cycloramic struggled to maintain its sales momentum beyond that year. Eventually, leveraging his technological expertise, Francois embarked on a new venture in the realm of digital photography, founding Car360. This innovative platform allows prospective buyers to obtain a comprehensive 360-degree view of the vehicles they are considering. Shortly before sharing his update on “Shark Tank”, Francois successfully sold Car360 to Carvana for an astounding $ 22 million.

Mark Cuban was thoroughly impressed by Francois’ remarkable achievements, particularly considering the need for the company to reinvent itself. He hailed it as one of the greatest triumphs ever witnessed on Shark Tank.

Cycloramic After The Shark Tank

Cycloramic came into existence in December 2012, courtesy of Bruno Francois and Egos Ventures. The app experienced tremendous prosperity but encountered challenges when the iPhone underwent design modifications in 2014, rendering Cycloramic less user-friendly.

Recognizing the need to adapt, Francois made a significant shift in 2015, redirecting his focus toward scanning automobile images to generate captivating interactive augmented reality (AR) experiences for potential online car buyers. This bold venture led to the creation of Car360, which Francois eventually sold to Caravan for an impressive sum of $ 22 million.

The Net Worth Of Cycloramic

During the presentation, Mark and Lori extended an offer, which was ultimately accepted at a valuation of $ 3.33 million [8]. Subsequently, in April 2018, Carvana made an acquisition move during a conference, facilitated by Carvana CEO Ernie Garcia.

Alternatives To Cycloramic:

  • Panorama 360: Panorama 360 is a widely used app that allows users to capture stunning panoramic images with ease. It offers various shooting modes, including manual and automatic options, giving users greater control over their panoramic shots. The app also provides real-time preview and image stitching capabilities to ensure seamless results;
  • Google Street View: While primarily known for its mapping service, Google Street View also allows users to capture panoramic images using their smartphones. With its intuitive interface and integrated features, users can easily create immersive 360-degree photospheres and share them with others;
  • Photosynth: Developed by Microsoft, Photosynth offers a unique approach to capturing panoramas. It allows users to take a series of photos in any direction and then stitches them together to create a panoramic image. The app provides an interactive viewing experience, enabling users to explore and navigate through their panoramas;
  • Dermandar: Dermandar is a versatile app that offers various shooting modes, including automatic, semi-automatic, and manual options. It utilizes advanced algorithms to stitch images together, ensuring high-quality panoramic results. Additionally, the app allows users to easily share their panoramas on social media platforms;
  • Pano: Pano is a feature-rich app that offers both automatic and manual shooting modes. It provides real-time guidance during the capturing process, helping users align their shots for better results. Pano also offers editing tools and filters to enhance and customize the captured panoramas;
  • Microsoft Photos Companion: While not specifically designed for capturing panoramas, Microsoft Photos Companion is worth mentioning as an alternative for users who want to transfer and organize their photos seamlessly. It allows users to wirelessly transfer photos from their smartphones to their Windows 10 devices, making it a convenient tool for managing and accessing panoramic images captured with other apps;


  1. How much does Cycloramic cost?

The cost of Cycloramic can vary depending on the platform and any in-app purchases or subscription options. As of 2023, Cycloramic was available for download on the App Store for iOS devices for $ 1.99.

The Net Worth Of Cycloramic

  1. What are the main features of Cycloramic?

The main features of Cycloramic include [9]:

  • Hands-free, tripod-free panoramic photo capture;
  • 360-degree capture;
  • Various capture modes;
  • Social media integration;
  • Image enhancement and editing tools;
  1. What is Cycloramic and how does it work?

Cycloramic is a mobile application designed for capturing panoramic photos using smartphones. It utilizes the phone’s built-in vibration, gyroscope, and compass sensors to rotate the device automatically while capturing the image. This hands-free and tripod-free approach simplifies the process of capturing panoramic shots and produces seamless, high-quality results.

  1. How does Cycloramic use the phone’s vibration to rotate the phone’s view?

Cycloramic uses the phone’s vibration feature to rotate the phone’s view by leveraging the principle of gyroscopic stability. When activated, the app emits specific vibrations that cause the phone to rotate smoothly along its vertical axis. The gyroscope sensor within the phone detects this rotational movement, and Cycloramic uses the information from the gyroscope and compass sensors to precisely control the rotation and capture process.

  1. How many things do Cycloramic produce?

Cycloramic primarily focuses on its panoramic photo capture app. However, it may offer additional related products or features that complement the main app, such as Cycloramic for desktop software and Cycloramic Screensaver. 

  1. Who should use the Cycloramic app?

Cycloramic is suitable for anyone who wants to capture high-quality panoramic photos without the need for a tripod or manual rotation. It is particularly useful for photography enthusiasts, travelers, social media users, and individuals who want to showcase their surroundings in a unique and immersive way.

The app’s user-friendly interface and automated rotation make it accessible to both novice and experienced photographers.

  1. Can you download the Cycloramic app right now?

As of June 2023, Cycloramic was available for download on the App Store for iOS devices. However, the availability of the app may have changed, and it’s recommended to check the respective app store for the most up-to-date information on downloading Cycloramic. Additionally, please note that Cycloramic was primarily developed for iOS devices, and its availability for other platforms, such as Android, may vary.

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