How To Video
Turn your Android phone into a WebcamIf your PC doesn't have a Webcam built in, or you just want a little more flexibility, here's how you can use the camera(s) in your Android phone or tablet instead.
-Maybe you want a Skype, record a blog or hang out with some friends on Google+. Whatever the case, you're going to need a webcam. If you don't have a built-in webcam but you do have an Android phone, let me show you how to turn to this into a webcam for your PC. To get started, you're going to need to download 2 programs. First, on your computer the IP camera adapter for Windows which you can find here, you'll also need a free app on your phone or tablet called IP Webcam. Once you have both installed, make sure that your Android and computer are on the same wi-fi network. That's an only way this is going to work. Now, launch the IP Webcam app on your Android phone and you'll be presented with a list of options and quality settings. Decide on the resolution. I'll use 1280x720, the quality, I'll stick with 50 and the frames per second. Just know that as you raise the overall quality, you'll also increase the chances of there being lag, so don't get crazy especially if you have poor wi-fi connection. Okay, you'll see some other options here like orientation, so pick a portrait or landscape and even the options to use your Android front facing camera which I'll select. I'd also suggest setting a username and password to prevent others from accessing your camera. We're all done here so I'll scroll down to start server, to start the video stream. Now we'll set up the rest on the computer. Over here, open up the IP Camera Adapter program. In the first field, enter the IP address and port number that shows up on the bottom of your Android screen. Enter your login and password and then click auto-detect and you'll see adjust a match what your camera in sending. Hit OK and now my Android phone is ready to act as my webcam even if you can see it yet. I'll set it down here where it has a good view of my face and now I launch Skype to test this out. Whenever you open a webpage or app like Skype that uses your webcam, you'll have to select your Android as a source. For Skype, I'll go to Options, Video Settings and select MJPEG camera. That'll do the trick and boom, there I am. Oh, and one thing to know. This whole set up will drain your Android's battery. So keep it plug in while you use it as a webcam. If you have any questions, hit me up on Twitter and check out howto.cnet.com for more tutorials like this. For CNET, I'm Sharon Vaknin.