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We're shopping for a baby monitor, but it seems like a waste to pay $150 for something when we already have both cameras/microphones (netbook with built-in webcam is the most mobile one) and remote devices that we carry around (Android phones). They also seem to vary a lot in quality and there are many complaints in forums about whichever product I research.

Looking through the Android market, there are several apps to turn your phone into a baby monitor that will call a specified number if the baby wakes up, but it means leaving your phone in the baby's room, needing another phone to carry with you.

I suppose setting up a streaming feed from a webcam and viewing it on your phone would not be too hard, but I'm afraid running a continuous feed would eat up all of my phone batteries. Maybe something that pushes a notification (SMS, WhatsApp, ?) to my phone telling me to check the feed?

Any ideas? Are there existing solutions?

The netbook is running Linux, and our phones are Android.

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This is definitely an interesting question for Super User, and I'm interested to see what solutions people come up with. You might also be interested in the Parenting site if you have other questions about baby monitors and other parenting issues. Don't cross-post your question, but if after a while you haven't gotten a good response here, we can migrate it there and see what other parents are using. –  nhinkle Jun 22 '11 at 21:57
    
As a non-parent (and frankly somebody who doesn't even like children), I also think this is an interesting question. –  Shinrai Jun 22 '11 at 22:14
    
Spying on anybody using off the shelf hardware sounds cool. When my wife and I travel and stay in hotel rooms with our young children, often we want them to sleep before we're ready for bed. So we leave one phone in the room and keep another with us on mute. That way we can hear what goes on in the room and the kid doesn't necessarily have to hear us unless we unmute our phone. Call waiting makes it so we're not missing calls at the same time. –  music2myear Jun 22 '11 at 22:31
    
Any reason not to just plug in the phone? –  new123456 Jun 23 '11 at 3:07
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1 Answer

cWatchTheHamster

The cWatchTheHamster

..software project presents a very efficient client-/server backend to stream images from any webcam connected to a linux pc to nearly every kind of client. The server-backend uses v4l4j, client- and server-backend are completely written in java. There is a swing frontend using the client (like hosted in this project) and a beautiful android client (+widget) available in the android market.

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@dAnjouAdded - A good enough answer, but please don't just post a link. I quoted some info from the linked page to add some more substance to the answer. –  Nifle Jun 23 '11 at 17:49
    
Sorry, I was just fooling around. Actually I believe this tools solves Jacob's problem as it is now. –  dAnjou Jun 23 '11 at 17:55
    
Interesting, however it does not seem to stream sound. –  Jacob R Jun 23 '11 at 18:07
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