A webcam is a video camera that feeds or streams its image in real time to or through a computer to a computer network.When "captured" by the computer, the video stream may be saved, viewed or sent on to other networks via systems such as the internet, and emailed as an attachment.The term "webcam" (a clipped compound) may also be used in its original sense of a video camera connected to the Web continuously for an indefinite time, rather than for a particular session, generally supplying a view for anyone who visits its web page over the Internet.Some of them, for example, those used as online traffic cameras, are expensive, rugged professional video cameras.
Despite the low cost, the resolution offered at present (2015) is rather impressive, with low-end webcams offering resolutions of 320×240, medium webcams offering 640×480 resolution, and high-end webcams offering 1280×720 (aka 720p) or even 1920×1080 (aka 1080p) resolution.
The above two Pro models are absolutely UVC-Mac compatible; Many older Mid-To-Low-End Logitech cameras are NOT UVC compliant: Depends on model number, different internal sensors, and part numbers! Like: Sturdy Clip, Adjustable Focus Ring, On Indicator LED Dislike: Needs VERY Bright Light Levels. Overall they were poorly-constructed, cheap junk with a few rare exceptions. Modern high-resolution UVC cams simply WILL NOT WORK on old 800mhz or less Macs, who's slow and incompatible USB 1.x speed ports are FOURTY times slower that USB 2.0.
Those that claim to be USB 1.1 compatible in their Specification listings may have utterly abysmal frame-rates on USB 1.x or show NO image at all, even though Apple's System Profiler may recognize the camera exists on the USB 1.1 bus.
Perhaps one of the best-known, if not infamous, free webcam sites, Chat Roulette is an anonymous webcam service that randomly cycles through connections to other webcam users.
The service earned a reputation as something of a sophomoric and pornographic romp, attracting a wide range of sometimes explicit webcam tastes.