Turn Your Smartphone into a High-Definition Webcam for your Next Teams or Zoom Meeting

The new normal brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic has definitely changed the way we collaborate

If there’s a silver lining with what’s happening right now, I would say that I am beyond grateful that we have the internet to rely on in terms of connecting everyone at the comfort of our homes while we continue to practice social distancing.

As the months progress with us working from home, I started to reflect and value what I am earning even more, because we are still not through these uncertain times. I am thankful that I still have a job despite all.

And with that, I started to become frugal and weighed my options whenever I start to have an urge to buy something online. Because we can’t deny the fact that temptations are real.

Then came this interest for me to “invest” in a high-definition camera for my day to day online meetings and online webinars I am hosting via Microsoft Teams, our productivity collaboration platform at work. Browsing the options I have online, I pushed back and once again weighed my options.

Then I thought – wait a minute, I have a phone with a really stunning camera, why not maximize what I already have? And besides, staying at home for quite some time, I can’t recall the last time I used my smartphone camera for recreation - therefore I had to find a way to re-purpose it.

I discovered this app called DroidCam, an easy to use solution to my concern. Something that you can try out too! Here’s how it works:

  1. Download the DroidCam from either the iOS App Store if you have an iPhone or the Google Play Store if you’re using an Android device.
  2. Download and install the DroidCam client for your Windows or Linux.
  3. Once all is set, connect your phone to either same WiFi / LAN if you want to connect wirelessly or if you prefer it the traditional way — wired, ensure your phone is connected via the USB port.
  4. Once connected successfully, you should see yourself in the DroidCam client on either your Windows or Linux device. For Mac users, you may want to use EpocCam, could also an alternative for Windows users.
  5. Now head on to Microsoft Teams or Zoom and when you turn on the camera, you should be able to see yourself via the camera feed of your smartphone.
  6. If you are not comfortable with your background, you may switch into a virtual background. And that’s it! You’re now ready to rock your next meeting or conference call in high-definition.

Here’s a reminder though if you are connected wirelessly. Running the app from the smartphone may drain your battery. Therefore, for best experience, I suggest you hook it with the USB cable.

With this discovery, I am not only able to hit one but two birds with one stone — saved myself from buying an HD camera (could cost me around $40–$120 or more for a high-end model) and at the same time — I can also be 100% focused in the conference call because my phone has found its new purpose while I do my online meetings.

Introducing my Improvised Studio on Microsoft Teams

It’s even a win-win for you if you host online webinars like me! Alright folks, that’s it! Hope you’re able to find this useful.

Gab Villanueva is a Business Development Manager for Filipino ISV & Startups, trainer and consultant for Digital Transformation and Cloud Computing 🌥