Turn your iPhone into a webcam 

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Fabienne's iPhone mounted on a tripod with the Glif

Webcams are hard to find these days, and those on sale are out of price.

Epoccam 460x0w

The good news is you can turn your iPhone into a webcam with the EpocCam by Kinoni.

This solution not only gives you a better quality image that most of the current computer webcams, but you have more control over the image, by setting the resolution, bitrate or even the use a green screen. You also have the choice of using your back camera (with the zoom lens) or your front facing camera.

It connects to your computer via Wi-Fi or USB (or NDI) and appears as an available webcam in all the apps I tested (Skype, Zoom, Discord, Whereby etc.). Just make sure to relaunch the video conferencing app after connecting your iPhone. Overall, I found that USB was more stable than Wi-Fi, but your mileage might vary.

EpocCam setting on iPhone
EpocCam settings
Video preview on iPhone
EpocCam controls

It works best if you have a mount for your iPhone, but it’s not required. It provides you with a second angle if you have to demo or bring someone else into the frame without moving your camera.

I was amazed by the difference in quality when using my iPhone (even the front facing camera). I’ve helped out a number of friends and colleagues with this simple and elegant solution until the availability of regular webcams comes back to normal.

QuickTime view using Facetime camera QuickTime view using iPhone camera
Facetime camera vs iPhone camera - swipe to compare

I use a small Manfrotto tripod with a Glif, Studio Neat’s excellent smartphone tripod mount. There are other solutions out there. I just happen to own these two products.

EpocCam works both on macOS and Windows, iOS and Android and comes in both a free and HD version.

2020-07-29 update: unfortunately, EpocCam has been blocked by some Mac videoconferencing services. If that is the case for you, try Camo, which has a much wider support. For more info, check out “Turn Your iPhone into a Powerful Webcam with Camo“ by Glenn Fleishman for TidBITS.

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