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Panoramic video on iPhones is about to get really big

Startup Kogeto's Dot panoramic lens, a $79 clip-on device that works alongside an app called Looker, is coming to all U.S. Apple retail stores later this month.

Dot makes your iPhone into a panoramic camera Paul Sloan/CNET

LAS VEGAS--This could become the year for panoramic video.

New York-based startup Kogeto, which makes the Dot camera lens, is on a roll. I met up with founder and CEO Jeff Glasse this morning at CES' Eureka Park exhibition, where Kogeto is showing off the device, and he told me that his 1-year-old company just raised more than $1 million in venture funding, which is no easy feat for a hardware marker.

More importantly, the Dot's distribution is about to get a huge boost. He said the lens will be on sale in all U.S. Apple stores on January 24, and in Apple stores in Europe soon after that.

GoPano at CES Paul Sloan/CNET

The clip-on device, which sells for $79, takes smooth videos and works with its app, called Looker. It works best when you hold the camera horizontally, as shown in the picture of Glasse holding it above. An Android version of the app is in the works.

Several startups have come up with clever ways to let the you take panoramic videos with the iPhone. Another one here at CES is GoPano, which grew out of the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon, and you can see the video interview I did with the CTO here.

These might turn out to be a bit of a gimmick, but I suspect that people will find clever ways to use them. Think about video recording a speech (suddenly, you don't have to move around the room). Or a kid's birthday party. Or a sporting event. As I said when I wrote about GoPano, I'm expecting my Facebook feed soon to be filled with 360-degree videos.