This is a enjoyable new use to your Android cellphone: A PC webcam! Within the newest Android beta, plugging a cellphone right into a PC will reveal a brand new choice within the USB Preferences menu for webcam performance. Simply decide that choice as an alternative of the default “file switch,” and the cellphone digital camera will register itself as a webcam. Then you’ll be able to fireplace up Zoom and begin video calling.
The Android construct with this characteristic is “Android 14 QPR1 Beta 1.” Android’s getting complicated with all these overlapping betas, however the present secure model remains to be Android 13. Android 14, at the moment on its tenth beta/developer preview, will most certainly be out alongside the Pixel 8 in October. Android 14 QPR1 is the quarterly launch after the primary secure construct of Android 14, and it needs to be out round December. (QPR stands for quarterly platform launch.) These occur between main releases, typically marketed as “characteristic drops.” Proper now, Android 13 is technically “Android 13 QPR3.”
Android is technically copying this characteristic from iOS. In Apple land, that is referred to as the “Continuity Camera,” and can work wirelessly between an iPhone and a Mac, which is fairly cool. As regular, the Android model is far more versatile for the reason that characteristic presents as a generic USB webcam. It ought to work on nearly all the pieces, like Home windows, Mac, Chrome OS, and possibly Linux. You may even plug an Android phone into another Android phone and use the primary cellphone’s digital camera because the webcam for the second cellphone.
A cellphone has much more thickness to work with than the highest half of a laptop computer, so most cellphone cameras will outclass any digital camera that has been crammed into the paper-thin display screen portion of a laptop computer. The exhausting half is developing with a viable cellphone mount that places the digital camera in the precise location. You will additionally nonetheless want some form of microphone, as you’ll be able to’t use the cellphone’s mic but. Hopefully that will get fastened in time for the secure releases.