After filing for bankruptcy unable to deliver on a crowd funding campaign that exceeded a million dollars, the Panono throwable 360 camera appears to have a new owner. In a letter to supporters, Panono co-founder Jonas Pfeil said that the sale of the company is being finalized, according to DP Review.
With the sale not yet final, it’s unclear just who is buying out the technology. But, the letter to backers does clear up a few questions. Mainly, the project’s initial backers on Indiegogo still won’t be getting a camera but the users of the 400 or so cameras that shipped will still have access to the cloud software essential to operating the camera.
While the company is selling its assets, which includes current inventory, software and hardware, the new buyer isn’t getting the “obligations towards external parties.” In other words, the new company isn’t going to ship the camera to the product’s first backers on that original crowd funding campaign. In the letter, Pfeil said that the funds from the sale will be going to pay the company’s debts and that the founders are walking away without any profit from the sale.
With the camera’s stitching software relying on a cloud, the sale does however suggest that the customers who actually received their cameras will still be able to continue using it. With no one to maintain the cloud software, without a buyer, the camera would have eventually stopped working.
Panono takes 360 shots with 36 different built-in cameras, stitching all those images together using that cloud-based software. While a number of different 360 cameras have popped up since Panono launched in 2013, the camera’s throwable design is still unique. A sensor inside the camera triggers a shot when the camera reaches the highest point, which means users can take aerial 360 photos without learning how to fly a drone but by simply throwing a ball in the air. The camera’s 72 megapixel count from all those built-in cameras also differentiates the camera from other consumer options.
Despite all the company trouble, the Panono is still listed for sale on the company’s website with no mention of the company’s bankruptcy and pending sale. While the camera cost backers $500 (and didn’t deliver a camera), the Panono is listed for $2,000 on the company’s website, with a note saying the camera is in stock in Germany.