Are you a Skype fanatic, a podcast star, or an amateur movie-maker who loves capturing the world around you?
Whether you’re looking for an external webcam to conduct interviews or create your own movies and skits, you have to know what’s what. Some features are more important than others—do you know what they are?
Buying a webcam is like buying a sharp LC-42 Inch Smart TV – you need to study the features first, before placing your order.
Be Resolute about Resolution
Image via Flickr by Jon Ovington
As with any camera, the resolution is the most important aspect. Whether you’re using a small portable camera or taking videos with your shiny new tablet, a clear picture tops the list of important features. You don’t need the highest resolution but you do need to think about the size of your screen. Don’t go overboard with resolution, just make sure your external webcam promises at least 2.0Mp. At that level, you’ll enjoy a clear picture filled with vivid colors but you won’t waste your money on extra resolution you don’t really need.
Focus on the Focus
Image via Flickr by xxrobot
There’s nothing worse than an unfocused video. If you’re making a movie or a podcast, you just lost your audience. If you’re doing a video interview, you just lost the job. When your images are blurry and out-of-focus, no one wants to watch the finished product. You don’t have to spend time fiddling with anything, though. The same tips you follow when buying the Kindle Paperwhite Tablet is what you must follow here. Because there are various types of Kindle in the Amazon store. Buying a webcam with auto focus abilities ensures sharp quality. You won’t have to spend that much more but you’ll be supplying a higher quality product.
Stop Blurring the Lines
Image via Flickr by stevegarfield
Focus is one thing; the frame rate is quite another. If you intend to move around in your videos, then smooth motion is critical. That requires a camera with a high fps, or frames per second, rating. While a standard 15fps is great if you plan to stay still, 30fps or more works better when you’re animated. If you’re into making little films and movies, go even higher. It keeps the image from stuttering, which is irritating. While you’re at it, get a cam with face-tracking. That way, no matter where you go, your face remains the central focus. The externa webcam requires focus, just like the Kindle HD Fire. Always ensure you follow the laid out guidelines before buying. This is going to save you money and time.
Don’t Drop the Mic, Yo
Image via Flickr by Travelin’ Librarian
What’s a video without clear sound? The last thing you want is to have a Skype chat or a video conference with an external microphone hanging out in the frame. It just looks messy, plus there is too much temptation to constantly adjust it or hold it up to your mouth like you’re rocking out Steven Tyler style. Most external webcams have microphones built into them, so choose one of those instead. However, make sure that it’s a quality mic; otherwise you’ll get stuck purchasing an additional headset, and that never looks cool. Never.
If all you do is chat on Skype or create video blogs, you probably haven’t given these features that much thought, and that’s a mistake. Take your webcam to the next level, no matter how you use it; your audience will thank you with accolades and standing ovations.
Shaun Chatman is a freelance writer by night and a gym trainer in the day. He lives in Dunedin, Fl. Shaun spends his free time playing with his kids or his gadgets.
The modern world is teeming with data—some may even call it data overload. There is so much information, communication, and entertainment available at our fingertips, and this phenomenon is continually expanding into every corner of the globe. It’s extremely interesting to note just how much people share within the space of a minute.
Image via Flickr by philliphubs
No doubt that social media has broken every data share record in existence. In a mere 60 seconds, there are 510,000 posts to Facebook, 120,000 tweets on Twitter, and 2,083 check-ins with Foursquare. Around 293,000 people update their Facebook status each minute while another 136,000 photos are uploaded to the social media site’s Timeline.
All of this is made possible by super-fast connection speeds. As of 2011, over 77,244 Wi-Fi connections are made on the iPhone every minute, with 51,937 additional connections coming from Android. These figures are likely to be higher this year.
Image via Flickr by Moomettes
With so many images to share, the penchant for uploading photos on the internet seeps into other aspects of social media. Flickr sees about 3,500 photos uploaded every 60 seconds. That’s enough photographs to form a stack of printed photos taller than today’s average NBA player. Instagram boasts 1,350 photos uploaded and Twitter sees about 1,475 third-party photos each minute, while websites like Yelp still lag behind at only two new photos per minute.
To put some of these figures in perspective, the amount of image uploads to Facebook in 15 minutes alone would equal the total number of photographs stored in the New York public photo archives! With the arrival of the latest smartphones, such as the new T-mobile Windows phone that runs on Windows 8 and the Samsung Note 2 that runs on Android ICS, with their advanced features for image editing and sharing online, going digital is the preferred norm for images now.
Reviews, Ad Requests, and Music
Image via Flickr by RafeB
Online reviews boast less impressive figures, but Yelp still sees 20 new reviews posted every minute. That number is likely to be much higher on product purchasing websites like Amazon. Ad requests fare better, with 4,111 advertisements being clicked on Mobclix’s network. This translates to an astounding 400,710 ad requests every 60 seconds, with 140,248 of them being rich media requests. Instant music is one major perk of having a smartphone, and it’s been estimated that 2,000 lyrics are played every minute on Tunewiki. Additionally, a total of three hours’ worth of video is uploaded to Youtube from mobile devices per minute.
Downloads and More
Image via Flickr by Edmond Chung
Apps have become must-haves for today’s smartphone user, so it’s no surprise that as many as 23,148 apps are downloaded every minute from the app store. To put the download and mobile gameplay in perspective, 208,333 minutes of Angry Birds are played globally for every real-time minute.
Every 60 seconds there are 1,500 pings sent on PingMe, 34,597 people using Zinio, and 463 European mobile banking interactions.
As smartphone use, connection speed, and newer mobile services improve at lightning speed, we can expect to see a dramatic increase in mobile banking and payment options, downloads, image sharing, and social media use. With so much content and information out there, this world becomes much smaller and more connected, one minute at a time.
Shaun Chatman is a freelance writer by night and a gym trainer in the day. He lives in Dunedin, FL. Shaun spends his free time playing with his kids or his gadgets.
Do not forget to leave us a message and let us know how many times per minute do you really use social media?