How To Use Your Phone As A Webcam

How-to-Use-Your-Phone-As-A-Webcam

You can save some money and look better on Zoom calls if you know how to use your phone as a webcam. Although picking out some of the best webcams for your video conferencing needs, there are situations where you don’t have a webcam readily available or you don’t want to spend that extra money on a separate device.

Your smartphone, fortunately, is basically a webcam. You can use your smartphone as a webcam with the help of the following applications. There are versions suitable for Android smartphones or iPhones and Mac or Windows PC.

You can also get the best ring lights and microphones to help you look and sound best on video calls.

This article recommends the best apps for converting your smartphone into a webcam.

Best apps to convert your smartphone into a webcam

EpocCam

You can install appropriate drivers on your Mac or PC after downloading and installing the EpocCam. You’ll also have to download the EpocCam iPhone Webcam Viewer on your iPhone from the Appstore then place your computer and phone on the same Wi-Fi network. You can also use a wired connection via USB to connect your iPhone to your computer. This app does not work with Android devices though.

After installing the drivers, the iPhone app will change to display an icon of your phone with circles coming out of it, after launching the app on your PC, your phone’s camera video will be displayed on your computer.

Either the rear or front camera on your iPhone can be used, and the app launches with some ads. The app’s free version limit’s your camera resolution to 680 x 480, but you can stream at resolutions up to 1080p when you upgrade to the paid version ($7.99). You will also be able to use the iPhone’s flash as a light source, use pinch-to-zoom, get HDR video, and so on. 

Specifications

  • Connection: Wi-Fi, USB
  • Supported phones: iOS
  • Supported operating systems: macOS, Windows

Pros

Works with Macs and PCs

Cons

Only works with iPhones

iVCam Webcam: How to Use Your Phone as a Webcam

iVCam works with a USB connection as well as over Wi-Fi, and its mobile app is available for both iOS and Android users. Its desktop software, however, only works for PC and thus, is not an option for Mac users. The app supports multiple resolutions up to 4k and you can change camera settings like frame rates, ISO, and exposure. 

You can use both cameras on your phone in portrait and landscape modes and you can swap out backgrounds.

There is a free trial version, but you can upgrade to the iVCam’s full version which costs $9.99 for a one-year subscription. You can also get a permanent subscription for $24.99.

Specifications

  • Connection: USB, Wi-Fi 
  • Supported phones: iPhone, Android
  • Supported operating systems: Windows

Pros

Works with iPhones and Android

Cons

It only works on Windows PCs

NDI HX Camera

To use NDI, you are required to download the app on your iPhone and the app and drivers on your laptop. Your smartphone and your computer also have to be on the same wireless network. The NDI then transmits the video feed from your smartphone to your PC via the NDA app.

Some nice and useful on-screen tools like using your phone’s flash, exposure adjustments, and zoom are present on the NDI’s mobile app. However, the desktop software for chat apps is only available for PCs and costs $20 which is a little pricey.

Specifications

  • Connection: Wi-Fi
  • Supported phones: Android, iPhone
  • Supported operating systems: Windows

Pros

Works with iPhones and Android phones

Cons

  • Pricey
  • It only works with Windows

DroidCam

DroidCam is available in both free and paid versions. The paid version, DroidCamX Pro, ups the resolution, removes in-app advertisements, and gives you more camera controls like a mirror, rotate video, flip, turn on the smartphone’s flash and adjust brightness and contrasts. It costs just $5.

The DroidCam app is available on both iPhones and Android smartphones, but the desktop versions only work for Linux or Windows systems. Your smartphone can be connected via USB or Wi-Fi, the former would better preserve your phone’s battery life.

Specifications

  • Connection: USB, Wi-Fi
  • Supported phones: iPhone, Android
  • Supported operating systems: Windows, Linux

Pros

  • Let’s you run the app in the background
  • Free and paid versions

Cons

  • Doesn’t work on Macs
  • Max resolution is 720p

NeuralCam Live

NeuralCam Live is easy to install and use although it only works for iPhones and macOS. Unlike other apps on this list, this one runs via USB connected to your Mac Laptop. It is reliable once connected and you simply open your video chat app and start using it.

The App doesn’t work with Safari, however, so use Firefox and Chrome. The free trial version of the app has some unique features like Gesture Guard and Head Bubble. You can also upgrade to a paid version ($29.99/year or $4.99/month), to get additional features like Ad removal, Low Light mode, and others that improve your video experience.

Specifications 

  • Connection: USB
  • Supported phones: iPhone
  • Supported operating systems: macOS

Pros 

  • Free (but the upgrade is a bit expensive)
  • Unique AI-based features

Cons

  • Only for iOS/macOS devices
  • Only connects via USB cable

Reincubate Camo

Reincubate Camo Studio’s software provides some nice settings and controls, like streaming at higher resolution, zoom, and pan, switching between different iPhone lenses, adding filters, etc. You’ll need to upgrade, however, to get access to all these features (which costs $4.99 a month or $39.99 a year.)

The free app still lets you choose between iPhone lenses (front and back) and select between various colored and black-and-white filters.

Reincubate Camo initially worked only with iPhones and Macs, but the software has since been updated to also work with and be compatible with Android devices as well as PCs. Regardless of your device, the app works via a USB connection between the smartphone and computer.

Specifications

  • Connection: USB
  • Supported phones: Android, iPhone
  • Supported operating systems: Windows, macOS

Pros

  • Quick setup
  • Free (but pricey subscription)

Cons

It only works via USB

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