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FAQ
FAQ

Frequently asked questions


1 How much does Phonewebcam cost?
2 Will the Viewer work on my phone?
3 How do I get the Viewer to my phone?
4 I went through 'Send to phone' but nothing came to my handset.
5 How do I get support?
6 I don't have a webcam - is Phonewebcam any use for me?
7 If someone doesn't have a PC, can they still view webcams on their phone?
8 Am I tied into any long contracts?
9 Is Phonewebcam secure?
10 Do I need a 3G phone?
11 What if I upgrade my phone?
12 What happens if I lose my phone or it's stolen?
13 What happens if I change my phone number?
14 Is it complicated to set up and use the Viewer?
15 Does the Viewer show moving images?
16 Will it work with my WiFi/IP camera?
17 If I sign up, won't you just start spamming me with emails and text messages?
18 I've just topped up my phone! Why do I need to top Phonewebcam up separately?
19 Who's behind this? Can I trust them? Is it Spyware?
20 My PC uses a router on a network to access the internet. Do I need to change anything to get it to work?
21 I have a remote WiFi/IP camera at a site with no PC there. It has an internet connection. Can I view that camera on my phone with this system?
22 How do I let others see my webcam?
23 How can I be sure all the content served is suitable?
24 I deleted the Viewer from my phone - how can I get it again?

FAQ

Answers


1
How much does Phonewebcam cost? Top
Just / / for 4 weeks orfor 4 weeks or / / for a year (excluding standard operator charges.)

2
Will the Viewer work on my phone? Top
You can test this with the free compatability test. Both the Phonewebcam Viewer and the compatibility test are java applications, so check here if you don't know whether your phone is java enabled.

Some operators may block the installation of applications which is a practice known as 'garden-walling' - you need to check with your operator for this. The good news is that the vast majority of operators will happily allow you to run Phonewebcam on your handset on both contract and PAYG.

3
How do I get the Viewer to my phone? Top
Click here.

4
I went through 'Send to phone' but nothing came to my handset. Top
Phonewebcam is a global product, so the most likely thing is that you didn't use the full international country code and format of your mobile phone number when creating your account. For more information on the correct format to use, click here. You should go through the 'Send to phone' process again using the correct number, then log into the website using it and select the Merge function on your 'My Account' page to add in the credit from your first account.

5
How do I get support? Top
Log into your secure area on this website and use the Support form found on the 'Setup' tab.

6
I don't have a webcam - is Phonewebcam any use for me? Top
Absolutely! The Phonewebcam Explorer allows you to view and organise public webcams on your PC. Make more of your home broadband by finding interesting new webcams from around the world and adding them to the Phonewebcam Directory to view on your phone. Click here to find out more.

7
If someone doesn't have a PC, can they still view webcams on their phone? Top
Yes, you can set up associated accounts for employees, friends and family so that they can view your webcam on a handset without needing a PC of their own. They can also use the Viewer for private cameras that other Phonewebcam users allow them to see, for example a nursery or business, plus there are many public webcams for them to view listed in the central Phonewebcam Directory.

What's more, unlike topping up phone accounts which has to be done separately, you can top up any or all of the accounts you manage in a single credit card transaction.

8
Am I tied into any long contracts? Top
Absolutely not. You can get it on your phone for just 4 weeks at a time, use the service as you need or let it lapse if you want. All you need to do when you want to start using it again is top up - we'll keep your account ready (unless you tell us not to!).

9
Is Phonewebcam secure? Top
Totally. The system was designed from the start with the utmost security in mind. All user data and images are scrambled using a custom 128 bit encryption scheme designed specifically for this purpose. All activity is logged centrally and the network is constantly monitored for suspicious activity. If it is detected, it will automatically block whatever caused it until fully investigated. Naturally the website uses SSL for all logged-in user activity and the credit card system is handled by a trusted 3rd party - we never store or see any credit card details. Plus no member of the Phonewebcam team is able to view your private camera

10
Do I need a 3G phone? Top
No - but of course it will work with one. Phonewebcam was designed to run on the widest possible range of handsets, so ordinary GPRS models are fine. If it has java you'll most likely find it's a GPRS model anyway.

11
What if I upgrade my phone? Top
Your payment entitles you to use of a Viewer on one handset for the duration that your account is in credit, so if you change your phone keeping the same phone number, log in to 'My account' and use the 'Send to handset' button to send the Viewer to your new phone.

12
What happens if I lose my phone or it's stolen? Top
Log in and change your password on the 'My account' page to instantly stop any unauthorised individuals being able to access private webcams on the Viewer.

13
What happens if I change my phone number? Top
Create a new account using your new phone number, then log in with it and use the Merge button on your 'My account' page to merge the old account into it. All your details and any outstanding credit will be transferred to your new account and the old account deleted.

14
Is it complicated to set up and use the Viewer? Top
Not at all. We've been really careful to make it as easy as possible - we know exactly how much trouble some phone software can be! We keep things simple by mirroring the system you are already familiar with on your phone. You have one number for the account, and simply keep it in credit to use the service. As far as loading the software on your handset, again it's easy because we send it all over the air - you'll just get a series of simple prompts on your handset the first time you use it and it will be available on a menu from then on. There is more information on how easy it is to use here.

15
Does the Viewer show moving images? Top
No, you view an image on demand. If you have a fast connection and really want to, you can achieve something close manually, but we wanted a system available to all and which won't cost a fortune to use. Feedback from users indicates that usually all they want is a quick spot-check to see if the car is on the drive, what the traffic's like on a motorway etc. which snapshots do fine. Plus with public cams you often have no choice as the vast majority are image snapshots anyway.

16
Will it work with my WiFi/IP camera? Top
Almost certainly. Most have an option to act as a basic webserver, so if you know the command to request a snapshot (see your camera's documentation) just enter it in the "Generic HTTP WiFi/IP" box. If your camera requires a login username and password, Phonewebcam can accommodate this too. You can also set up a basic website relay and there's a built in FTP client for cameras which send timed images to an FTP server. Some models have more advanced options which can trigger FTP bursts, which offer basic recording facilities provided by the camera software itself. In most cases, Phonewebcam will not disturb the existing setup of the camera, so you can still make use of any particular features such as email motion detection, audio, pan/tilt etc. Support is being constantly added, so keep an eye on this website for news of newer models. The current list is:

  • Generic HTTP WiFi/IP camera
  • Website relay
  • Timed FTP image relay
  • PEAK CLPK330 / CLPK330W
  • AXIS 2100
  • AXIS 2120/2400/2400+/2401/2401+/2420 PAL
  • AXIS 2120/2400/2400+/2401/2401+/2420 NTSC
  • D-Link Generic
  • D-Link CAS-200W
  • D-Link DCS-1000
  • D-Link DCS-2000
  • D-Link DCS-2100
  • D-Link DCS-5300
  • TRENDnet TV-IP200W
  • AVerMedia NC100
  • Canon Generic Network Camera
  • Panasonic Generic
  • Panasonic BL-C10
  • Panasonic BL-C30A
  • Panasonic WV
  • Panasonic WV-NP472
  • Sony SNC-M1
  • Sony SNC-M3
  • Sony SNC-M3
  • Sony SNC-P5
  • Toshiba IK-WB01A
  • Toshiba IK-WB02A
  • Toshiba IK-WB11A
  • Toshiba IK-WR01A

There's another point worth mentioning regarding WiFi/IP camera support. Unfortunately, some of their built-in webservers aren't too secure, which means if the camera doesn't support http authentication (which Phonewebcam will use if available), anyone else can view the images should they discover its IP address. To keep it safe you'd have to restrict its address to one on your private LAN, but that means you can't directly see it from the internet. The Publisher fixes this by operating as a Camera Firewall - it's safe to view from the internet because the images are encrypted and authenticated, but is fed from the private WiFi/IP camera which can't be accessed outside your LAN. And of course, the transmitted data is scrambled by Phonewebcam making it useless to man-in-the-middle snoopers. In effect, the Publisher turns insecure net cameras into secure ones which serve mobile phones.

17
If I sign up, won't you just start spamming me with emails and text messages? Top
No! There are many cowboys in the mobile phone content business, so people are always wary of anything new. Our whole business ethic depends on trust, so when we say we don't spam, we mean it.

18
I've just topped up my phone! Why do I need to top Phonewebcam up separately? Top
Phonewebcam is independent and therefore separate from any phone operators. Topping up your phone account won't add credit to your Phonewebcam account.

19
Who's behind this? Can I trust them? Is it Spyware? Top
Phonewebcam is operated by OTAMate Technology Ltd, a well-respected European telecoms software and services company. You certainly can trust us as your privacy is our utmost concern. Please feel free to check the OTAMate website and the Phonewebcam privacy statement.

Phonewebcam is not Spyware. When your PC communicates to our secure central server, it only sends the minimum information needed to operate the system. We categorically never send anything not 100% related to the Phonewebcam system. Unlike Spyware, we certainly don't send anything from anywhere else on your PC.

20
My PC uses a router on a network to access the internet. Do I need to change anything to get it to work? Top
Yes - you need to assign a static IP address to your PC and port-forward to it via your router. This is an easy process you do once, then forget about it. The port to use is the one you chose during installation (default is 9866), but it can be changed after the event easily enough when you log into the website and manage your account. There is some good information on this here.

21
I have a remote WiFi/IP camera at a site with no PC there. It has an internet connection. Can I view that camera on my phone with this system? Top
Yes! We even have users monitoring property abroad in exactly this situation. A PC needs to be somewhere in the setup to process the images for the handset, but it can be in your home or office separate from the camera. Just go right ahead and install a normal Publisher on your PC - nothing extra is needed.

We are planning to offer a service where we run the equivalent software to your PC on our servers, effectively taking the PC out of the loop where appropriate. This will be a separate service contract. Please keep checking the website for further news.

22
How do I let others see my webcam? Top
This is easy and is included when your Phonewebcam account is in credit. Any Phonewebcam user can set up a whitelist which holds the phone numbers of the other users that they are allowing to see their camera. Just log into the website, choose "My cameras" and click on the little phone image to manage its whitelist. You are then termed a "Service provider" as you are providing your camera as a service to others. When you add users to your whitelist, your camera appears to them as a new entry on their Viewer under the Webcams menu titled "My Services".

23
How can I be sure all the content served is suitable? Top
Public webcams are submitted to the central Directory by Phonewebcam Explorer users. When they do this, their additions and changes don't appear in general searches until they have been approved by Phonewebcam staff. This screening process ensures the cameras are up to date, correctly described and suitable for general viewing. If rejected, only the account holder who submitted the webcam link will be able to view it on their phone. Screening is never applied to private webcams because Phonewebcam staff cannot access them.

24
I deleted the Viewer from my phone - how can I get it again? Top
Log into your secure area on this website and on your 'My Account' page if you are in credit, you can use the option to re-send the Viewer to your phone. This will deduct 1 day's credit from your balance to cover the cost involved.

 

 
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