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Tech Tip
by Brad Appleby
Appleby Arts

Smartphone Panoramas

Did you know you can use your smartphone to create a nice panoramic photo? Most Androids and iPhones don't require a third party app to create panoramic photos. Both systems have the camera apps built into the software. The app should offer you a guided user interface to help you line up each shot.

What will happen is you will take one picture, working from the left to the right, and move the camera right until you align the right of the first photo with the left of the new photo. Then you can repeat the process and go 360 degrees around if you want. The camera will overlap the photos to create one big photo.

You might want to try it out a few times to get the hang of it before taking panoramas on location. You don't want to climb a mountain and then try to learn how to do it.

Make sure you move slowly when you rotate the camera around. Try to keep the camera at the same level for all the shots and move carefully around behind the camera. This will help make the picture look smoother. If you stand in the middle and rotate the camera around your body, the photos might not align correctly.

It's harder to create panoramas inside buildings because of the changing light when you go from a dark room to a sun filled room with a window. Avoid moving objects when possible; if things are moving, like cars, planes and people, you might get one half of a car in one photo and in the next photo the car is gone and you end up with half a car in your panoramic photo.

You can use Photaf Panorama at, a free app to help you create nice panoramic photos, or you can buy the pro version for just under a dollar. Cycloramic is an app for the iPhone 5 that will help with your panoramic photos at a cost of $1.99 at your Apple iStore.

I would try the camera app that came with your smartphone first. I look forward to seeing your new panoramic photographs, and have fun with it.

To learn more about this and other Tech Tip articles, contact Brad at (702) 294-1392 or

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