Introduction: How to Use an Android Phone As a Webcam With Skype

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There's an old saying that a picture is worth a thousand words… and there's a new saying that a video is worth a million. Now that might seem like an exaggeration, but there is a huge difference between speaking to someone on a call and speaking to them via video chat. Simply being able to smile at someone can completely change the tone of a conversation.

If you don't have a webcam, but you do have a phone that runs Android 2.2 or higher you can use that instead. All you need are a couple of pieces of software and a wifi connection.

Before you get started though, you might want to consider just downloading the Skype mobile video chat app: it's free and it'll let you make video calls direct from your phone. Using this app you can enjoy free video chat with anyone who also has Skype and a webcam or compatible smartphone.

Up to 10 people can share their video at the same time while the rest can participate over audio

Step 1: What You'll Need:

• A wifi connection (both your phone and computer need to be connected to the same wifi network)
• A computer with Skype and either Google Chrome or Firefox installed
• An Android phone running Android v2.2 or higher
• The IP Webcam app (free from the Google Play store)
• The IP Camera Adapter software for your computer (also free)

Step 2:

Open the IP webcam app on your Android phone and tweak the settings to fit your needs. You can adjust things like resolution, quality, the orientation, which camera you're using, the maximum frames per second and the focus mode. If you want to also use the phone as a microphone leave audio mode enabled.

You'll also want to make sure the app is set to prevent the phone going to sleep.  You'll find the app will drain your battery quickly, so you might want to plug the phone in. And if you want the connection to be more secure you can set a login and password.

One you're happy with the set up go to the bottom and tap start server.

Step 3:

An IP address will show up at the bottom of your phone screen. Go to this address in either Chrome or Firefox and select the "Use browser built-in viewer" option.

Your browser should now show the video feed from your phone. If it doesn't, go back and select another option.

Step 4:

Open IP Camera Adapter on your computer and replace "http://<your_webcam_ip>:<port>" with the IP address and port showing on your phone, leave "/videofeed" in place. You should end up with something like "".

If you set up a login and password enter these. Then click "Autodetect", then "Apply", then "OK".

Step 5:

When you start Skype it should automatically detect the video feed from your phone and recognise it as a webcam.