Remote work has always been a thing, but it’s more prevalent now, thanks to the pandemic. If you work remotely, you need a way to connect with your staff, typically done through video conferencing. Tap or click here to find out how to give your home office a high-tech makeover.
Unfortunately, most laptops come with a grainy webcam, and purchasing a standalone version can be spendy. However, if you own an Android phone, you are in luck.
With just a few tricks, you can use your Android phone to replace your computer’s built-in webcam and save money in the process. Here’s how to quickly turn your Android into a webcam.
What’s lying around?
Even if your primary phone is an Android, using it as a webcam can be counterproductive. What if you need to take a call or send a message during your meeting?
You don’t need to have the latest technology to make this hack work. Just a high-quality Android phone with a working rear camera. So take a look and see if your older model will work.
You’ll also want a high-quality tripod to keep your smartphone in the proper position. You can make your own or fashion something with household items, but a decent tripod is relatively inexpensive and worth the investment.
Outside of an Android phone and a tripod, you’ll need an app that converts your camera into a webcam. There are many out there that you can purchase, but DroidCam comes with a free version that works well.
You’ll need to download the app for your phone, as well as the desktop client. The app works with a PC Client component that installs the webcam drivers and connects the computer to your mobile device.
The free version of DroidCam includes ads and limits certain features like camera rotation. So if you want this feature and higher camera resolution, you’ll have to spring for the premium version of the app for $5.49. Download the free version of DroidCam here. Or get the premium version here.
Turning your phone into a webcam
Once you’ve downloaded both the smartphone app and desktop client, the rest of the process is pretty simple. Just ensure you’ve got an Android phone with an excellent rear-facing camera and that’s it. Next, set up in an ideal position to use for video conferencing:
- Open the app on both your smartphone and your PC.
- On the smartphone app, locate the IP Address and Port and take note of the numbers.
- On the desktop client, click the Wi-Fi icon in the top left corner.
- Enter the IP Address and Port numbers and press start.
- Your camera feed should begin to appear.
If you see zeros when you look for your IP address and Port numbers, look to verify your smartphone is correctly connected to Wi-Fi. As a final note, ensure to plug your phone in so it doesn’t die in the middle of your video call, leaving you in hot water with your boss!