Use your cell phone as a webcam: This is how it works wirelessly or via USB

Is your laptop webcam malfunctioning or are you using a desktop without a camera? Then you can easily connect your cell phone as a webcam and use it for video calls and vlogs. NextPit tells you how this conveniently works wirelessly or via a conventional USB cable.

Smartphones now have really good cameras, and built-in microphones can also be heard. Therefore, the idea of ​​simply using the smartphone as a webcam on the laptop or PC makes sense. If that’s exactly what you have in mind, you’ve come to the right place.

Because in this guide I will tell you how you can use your smartphone wirelessly or wired on PC as a webcam. In each case, you need to download a free app. Since this project works with both Android and iOS phones, I’ve divided this guide as follows:

Table of Contents:

  1. Use Android phone as webcam
    1. cabling
    2. Wirelessly via WLAN or Bluetooth
  2. Use iPhone as a webcam
  3. Pro Tip: Buy a Cell Phone Tripod

Of course, everything is particularly practical if you permanently install your mobile phone as a webcam. Do you still have an old, unused smartphone? Perfect! You can read more about recycling old smartphones in the linked article.

Use Android phone as webcam

In my opinion, the best webcam app for Android is “DroidCam – Webcam for PC”. The app is available for free on the Google Play Store. The best way to download it is to simply tap on the following link on your mobile phone:

After installation, the application directly opens an installation wizard. If you don’t know what to do next, we’ll go through the steps again below. Oh yes, of course, you still have to grant the app access to the camera and microphone. But then it starts.

cabling

If you install the app, you can basically put your cell phone aside for now. Because for Droidcam to be able to communicate with your PC, it still needs a client. It is available for free for Linux and Windows operating systems on the developer’s home page.

Install the client and then switch back to your cell phone. Because for Droidcam to find your smartphone as a webcam, you still need to turn on USB debugging in developer settings. If you don’t know how to unlock your Android phone’s developer settings, you can find out in the linked instructions.

DroidCam 02 NextPit

To use Droidcam, you need to enable USB debugging on your phone. / © Droidcam / Screenshot: NextPit

Your cell phone should appear in the list of devices for Droidcam, as long as it is connected to your PC via USB. Make sure your cell phone also has an active data release. If it’s just charging, you’ll need to turn it back on in the notification bar.

Droidcam should now find your mobile phone and ideally you can see your desktop in the program via streaming video at this point. If not, you need to make sure Droidcam is open on both mobile and PC. By the way, it has to stay that way to use it on Skype, Google Meet & Co.

DroidCam NextPit

You can download the Droidcam client for free from the Internet. / © Droidcam / Screenshot: NextPit

In your video chat program’s settings under “Camera”, now switch to one of the Droidcam entries. And then you can start making calls.

wireless

As already mentioned, everything also works wirelessly. It has the advantage that you don’t have to connect your mobile phone to the computer and you can move more flexibly. The downside, of course, is battery power, if you use your Droidcam without a USB cable. However, the setup is also very simple.

DroidCam NextPit 03

Thanks to Droidcam, you can also connect your mobile phone to your PC wirelessly. / © Droidcam / Screenshot: NextPit

In the Droidcam app, all you have to do is find the WiFi IP of your smartphone and type it into the corresponding field in the PC client. Now go back to your video chat application and select Droidcam as the webcam. Again, this only works if the software is open on the smartphone and PC.

Advice: Droidcam also provides a video stream by IP address that you can view through your browser. You can also use an old mobile phone as a surveillance camera or you can watch the French fries cook in the oven from your desk. Practically!

Use iPhone as a webcam

The procedure on your iPhone is similar to that of Android. We recommend using the “EpocCam HD Webcam” application, which already allows a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels at 30 frames per second in the free version. That should be enough for video calls. Install the app from the following link:

As with Droidcam, you’ll need to download a PC client, and there’s a version for MacOS, which is useful. Just follow the link below and download EpocCam:

The connection is a bit easier than on Android because you don’t need to enable USB debugging. Instead, the two EpocCam clients simply sync up and create a video stream after some time. Now go back to your video chat client and select the software as a webcam.

Tip: Buy a cell phone tripod

Well, did setting up your cell phone as a webcam work? So I have one last pro tip for you. Buy a cell phone tripod and put it on the desk. So you don’t have to hold the smartphone in your hand all the time and you don’t wobble as much when talking on Skype.

How do you find the solution to use the cell phone as a webcam? Will you be using this on future video calls or is it too cumbersome?