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Review: Live Cams

January 26, 2010

Main Screen


Live Cams is an outstanding application that delivers exactly what the name implies - live video cameras. With a repository of 3,000 cameras available to view, and the ability to add more public or private cameras - Live Cams is truly an eye catching application to any App Store shopper. However, is it too good to be true? Can it really be as promising as it sounds? Let's find out.


-Available for Many Uses Live Cams is a great application for viewing any public or private cameras, whether they are webcams or IP cams. This application gives users the ability to enjoy viewing the cameras from either WiFi, 3G, or EDGE, making it great for entertainment, sight-seeing and even for security systems. -User Customizable The settings in this application allow you to make it perfect for any use. Users can determine several factors: how many rows/columns per page, whether to load for faster video or higher quality, which cameras to load on startup, and even the ability to only display private cameras. No matter what you use this application for, it is customizable just for you. -Variety of Supported Cameras This application supports various cameras ranging from webcams to IP cams. Just about every webcam is supported, but it mostly depends on the program running on the computer. For Windows XP, Vista, and 7 computers, Live Cams suggests webcamXP. If you use Leopard or Snow Leopard, they suggest using EvoCam. Both programs have a free (but not full) version available.

The Breakdown:

Pan/Tilt/Zoom ControlsThe Good: Well, this application does what it is made for, and does it quite well. You can favorite as many video cameras as you want, as well as add an unlimited amount. This application is one of the best at what it does for many reasons. First of all, it has PTZ, or Pan/Tilt/Zoom, abilities. Users can control a variety of cameras that support this. Well, as long as no other users are controlling it at the moment. Second, it supports tons and tons of webcams. If you use Windows or Mac OSX, you can use almost any type of webcam that connects with either USB or FireWire. iSight Cameras are also supported, as are a select number of built-in cams for PCs. Lastly, it lets users search for new cameras by categories, making it perfect to find a new camera displaying just what you want. There are categories for many cameras: traffic cams, airports, animals, beaches, marinas, and much, much more. The Bad: Well, what can I say here? The application does exactly what it promises! I do have a few complaints, but they are mostly problems which I can't hold against the developer. First of all, loading public cameras is slow. However, this is due to the fact that since the application is so popular, there are many users connecting to the same cameras all at once. This slows down the cameras significantly. Second, on cellular networks, you can only receive a megabyte of data per minute. This is not the developer's limitation, rather it is AT&T and Apple's. The only feature I wish this application had is audio. Currently, Live Cams does not support audio in any form, although the developer has stated that it will appear in a future release.

The Verdict

Live Cams does what it says, and offers a great variety of features. This is a great application for either sight-seeing, entertainment, or even for security systems. Live Cams offers easy usability and navigation, as well as an easy way to find new cameras. Although this application may not be perfect, it is definitely something to check out.

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