Presenting, a USB-tethered webcam application for phones and devices running Google Android OS. Your phone has a perfectly good microphone and video camera. Why buy or manufacture a separate USB webcam product to do the same thing? Help save the Earth and save some cash by using USB Webcam for Android.

There are two parts to USB Webcam for Android: One piece is installed on the phone or device via Android Market, and the other piece is installed on the Windows PC. A background process can be started or stopped in Windows, and while the process is running, DirectShow-compatible video chat clients or capture programs can use phone as a camera and/or microphone.

The camera and microphone functions are somewhat independent, this could be named USB Microphone just as easily.

It turns out, most video chat applications require kernel-mode video capture drivers (oops, this one is user-mode) and few applications use DirectShow at all for audio capture. So currently, besides specific capture applications, USB Webcam is probably most useful for Skype.

Compatibility so far:

Skype – video only
Amcap – video and audio
VLC Media Player – partial video and audio
Yawcam (very good webcam streaming/publishing/automating app) – video
VirtualDub – video and audio
Yahoo Messenger – only ‘webcam’ function
Google Video Chat – not working, attach-to-process debug reveals this will probably only work with kernel-mode drivers, either WDM or VFW. Kind of ironic.
AIM – not working. Who uses AIM or Yahoo anyways?
Pidgin – Pidgin is great, but doesn’t support audio or video. Soon Google will release the spec for XMPP based video. Maybe then Pidgin or some other application will allow user-mode capture.