How To

Hook a webcam to an Android projector/use it for video calls

This is something I discovered recently with the Elfin 800 Lumen projector that has become a staple of my entertainment offerings. The long and short of it is I was able to hook up a Jabra Panacast 20 and using the Android 10 / Android TV software able to install and use video conferencing software. Will other hardware work? Probably – I don’t have a host of USB webcams to test however.

After hooking the Panacast up, no longer was my projector a one-way device.

Jabra Panacast 20

This isn’t one of the Elfin selling points as a note, but it should be. I asked if this was possible and was told probably not by my PR contact, so I did it. It worked. Take that people who gave me free stuff… in your face!

You can turn one of the best little projectors out there into a communication station, or at least could as of last month. Probably other Android based projectors as well, but I also don’t have a whole lot of decent projectors running Android to test with. Feel free to remedy that for me.

Is it useful for you to have a 100 or so inch video call going on? Maybe, maybe not. But I’ve been amused that I have the option to have a wall devoted to calling the grandparents. I now feel the need to see if I can get video filters in Snapchat or something going on on a full wall.

Notable issue you should consider is that the projector is generally in one location (behind you,) and the camera you would want probably facing you. You’ll probably want a USB extension cable if you go this route. Or maybe a WiFi camera of some sort – have not played beyond the USB realms yet.

But, if you’ve got a projector running Android and a webcam, try it out. It can turn an otherwise passive device into an interactive communications portal / you can use Zoom out in the yard on a projector screen. Keep the kids from touching a screen. Make the boss really big. Have a window into the grandparent’s house.

You can also just use it to amuse the kids by letting them watch themselves on a wall.

As this doesn’t seem to be a promoted or supported or discussed thing, might want to not invest a lot of money, or any money, into purchasing anything as it might go away after an update.

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts

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