1/9/09
6:00 pm

MacMost Now 184: Ecamm Bluetooth Web Camera

The Ecamm Network announced a wireless web camera for Macs at this year's MacWorld Expo.

Video Transcript (Click to Expand)
Gary: On this MacWorld Expo special, let's take a look at a Bluetooth webcam.
Now it's tough to find webcams that work really well with a Mac, let alone ones that have special functions. But the Ecamm Network's coming out with something they call the BT-1. The BT-1 not only is a webcam that has Mac software but it's wireless. It's actually going to use Bluetooth to communicate between the web camera and your Mac. It's coming out in March at about $149 and I was able to catch up with Glen from Ecamm Network at the show.
I'm here with Glen from Ecamm Network and I'm taking a look at the BT-1 which is a small wireless webcam that works using Bluetooth. What gave Ecamm the idea to come up with a Bluetooth webcam?
Glen: Well, we want to make our products as easy to use as possible and we found that we were selling a USB webcam that was great, but it required USB 2.0 which a lot of older Macs didn't have, so we were sitting around thinking it would be great if we didn't have to deal with this USB thing. One of us just decided that a Bluetooth webcam might be an option. We started exploring it and it turned out to be not only quite doable, but a really neat product.
Gary: Now does it work just like a USB webcam does?
Glen: Yeah, you install our software and it shows up as a standard webcam and a standard microphone source in any program that sees a webcam.
Gary: Excellent. And we have one right over here. It's a small box and it comes with a tripod, right?
Glen: Yeah, it comes with a mini-tripod but it uses a standard tripod mounting screw. Any tripod that you need that you want to connect it to will work just fine.
Gary: And it's got a stereo microphone. Can you hook more than one up at a time to your machine?
Glen: You can pair more than one to your Mac. You can't stream more than one simultaneously. But if you had more than one of these, our software has a selector where you can switch between them on the fly.
Gary: Does it work with iMovie, iChat, Photo Booth, and everything?
Glen: Yeah, we're working on getting iMovie support. Right now we support any app except iMovie. In March when this ships we should have iMovie support as well.
Gary: Great. So it's shipping in March. What's it going to cost?
Glen: It's going to be $149.
Gary: Okay, great. Thank you very much, Glen.
Glen: Thanks.
Gary: I think a Bluetooth webcam is a great idea. It's just enough range that it could be a lot of fun and very useful in situations where your computer is going to stay at the desk but you want to take the conversation somewhere else, like say in a small conference room or maybe at home.
Until next time, this is Gary Rosenzweig with MacMost Now.