How to Use Your iPhone as a Webcam

You have a few different options if you want to use your iPhone as a webcam for your Mac. Here are the possibilities and which is best for you.

As more work goes virtual, you want to make sure you have a good webcam for all of your meetings. Webcams can be expensive, so it's natural to wonder if you could just use your iPhone as one, in addition to everything else it does. Turns out, the answer is yes! Using an iPhone as a webcam for your Mac can be a little complicated, but it is doable. Here's how.

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How to Use Your iPhone as a Webcam

If you want to use your iPhone as a webcam, the best thing to do is to download an app like Webcam+. There are other programs available, but I had the best luck getting Webcam+ to work on both my Mac and iPhone; plus, it's free, so this is what we'll be using for this example. For more tips on how to synchronize your Mac and iPhone, check out our free Tip of the Day

  1. Download the Webcam+ app on both your Mac and your iPhone (or iPad if that is what you'd rather use). Make sure they are both on the same wireless network or within Bluetooth range.


     
  2. Launce Webcam+ on your Mac. You will see a window showing that it's searching for a compatible iOS or iPadOS device.


     
  3. Open Webcam+ on your iPhone.


     
  4. Your device should show up on your Mac. Click on it.

  5. Your iPhone will turn into a webcam.

To use the webcam for video chat etc., you'll have to go into the video chat app or program's settings and choose Webcam+ as the webcam when the program is open and running. This is not a perfect method, though, as not every app or program will recognize the app's camera as an option.

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Which brings us to our next point.

Related: Buyer's Guide 2020: Mac Gear

Use Apps That Allow You to Use Your iPhone

Although using your iPhone as an external camera when you're on your Mac can be very useful, but the options are imperfect and can get expensive. So, whenever you can, I recommend using your iPhone or iPad for the calls or programs you need a webcam for. This may be frustrating if you need to take notes, but you'd have to prop your phone up separately from your Mac anyway, so it's really not much different than using it as an external webcam, except you'd have to look to the side to see your screen instead of at your computer. You can also set up your iPad like a laptop, giving you the option of the iPad webcam and a better work setup.

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Author Details

Amy Spitzfaden–Both's picture

Author Details

Amy Spitzfaden–Both

Amy Spitzfaden Both is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life, an award-winning novelist, and an iPhone enthusiast. Over the past decade, her work in the publishing industry has included live coverage of industry events including the Yale Publishing Course and Magazine Innovation’s ACT 9 Experience, providing editing services for several start-up publishing houses, and acting as newsstand consultant for magazines such as The Old Farmer’s Almanac and The New York Review of Books. She graduated from M.I.U. with a Bachelor’s in Literature and Writing, and has gone on to publish two novels and two short stories. Her debut novel Untold won the 2014 Chelson Award for Fiction.
Writing everything from book reviews to skincare tips, Amy discovered a passion for bringing exciting and useful information to even the most casual researcher. The mix of usability and endless possibilities is what drew her to Apple products originally, and the more she learns, the more she loves.
Amy lives in New Hampshire with her husband and daughter. When she’s not writing or glued to her iPhone, she enjoys hiking, traveling, and creating her own tea blends.