Webcam utilities come in several flavors. Some emphasize the security angle by monitoring several cameras at once, much like a CCTV system. Others have a different objective: fun. ArcSoft's WebCam Companion 4 definitely falls into the second group. This shareware Webcam manager not only handles your Webcams but also edits and adds cool stuff to your video feeds, such as masks and text. It can capture 3D and HD video and still images, and it makes it easy to share everything on Facebook, Twitter, and other Web sites. But that doesn't mean WebCam Companion doesn't also make an excellent security and surveillance tool since it also includes motion detection, face recognition, and other advanced monitoring features. WebCam Companion 4 is free to try for 30 days.
WebCam Companion showed a nag screen when we started the program, and also a countdown displaying the number of days left in our free trial period in the title bar. It has a sleek, attractive interface with an up-to-date brushed-metal look. The main window opened to the program's Home page, an uncluttered row of icons accessing all of the important features: Capture, for configuring and managing our Webcam, video card, and other settings; Masque, which lets you morph your face into other faces; Fun Frame, which can autocapture images and video by detecting poses; Edit, which accesses a wizard-based video editor; Monitor, which can detect faces and motion; and More Applications, for adding and managing new Modules and Applications. Each feature is also available on the toolbar, along with the program's Settings and quick 2D and 3D capture buttons.
WebCam Companion's wizard-based features made quick work of setting up our Webcam, with plenty of configuration options, but there's also a wizard-within-a-wizard to make things easier still, plus a comprehensive browser-based Help file that answered all our questions. While this program is widely compatible, users with more processing power and better graphics cards will achieve better results when handling HD and 3D video. Needless to say, we were getting pretty silly pretty quick with our Webcam feed with WebCam Companion 4. Bet you will, too!
Editors' note: This is a review of the trial version of Arcsoft WebCam Companion 4.0.