CollabraCam App: Enables Live Video Direction Across Multiple Mobile Devices

The ability to direct a live video shoot across multiple cameras in real time has historically been a luxury reserved for professionally equipped directors. However, once again, app-based technology has turned a well-established norm on its head. Offering the same capability to anyone in possession of a smartphone or tablet is the CollabraCam.

To use the app, between two and four iPhones, iPod Touches or iPads can be connected via wifi. The director of the shoot will then be able to view all the cameras’ streams on his or her device, and select which footage should be visible on the main video stream at any one given time. Cameras can also be put on standby in order to prepare them for the next shot, and the director can silently issue instructions such as pan and track movements to camera operators via a display on their screen. All the footage recorded by the camera operators is transferred to the director’s device automatically as the shoot is taking place, removing the need for lengthy memory card exchanges and footage downloads after a shoot has concluded, as well as freeing up space on the operators’ devices. A video demonstrates a prototype of the app in greater detail.

This is brilliant and revolutionary! A must have app for all “professionally amateur” videographers, like myself!

It costs $10 and is available on the iPhone (iOS 4 or later) only.

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A quick “Behind the Scenes, the Day Before TEDxGrandRapids” video shot with CollabraCam! Looking forward to the event tomorrow. Special Thanks to Steve Frazee, Eric Kuhn, Grant Carmichael and Glen Danles.

There were several challenges with the building degrading our Wi-Fi signal and there were eight Wi-Fi networks in the building causing interference. Most people aren’t aware that if there are several Wi-Fi networks broadcasting in the same area and they are all on the same or overlapping channels (channel 1, 6 and 11 have the least overlap, but are typically default settings) they are actually sharing bandwidth. The Wikipedia page about Wi-Fi has a good explanation of this called Wi-Fi channel pollution.


This is the inaugural episode of Herding Geeks, a series of interviews with Grand Rapids and West Michigan technical, professional, and user group leaders by CoNGA West Michigan. In this episode, Ben Rousch of CoNGA-WM talks about testing with Matt Heusser of GR-Testers. Kyle Hilla of Apptopus, Inc. provided the camera work with live editing using CollabraCam (post-production assembly and titling with iMovie).

“I tripod mounted the iPod Touches to be a one man production crew. The tripod mounts are from Steadicam. They also have iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 versions… and they also make a full handheld Steadicam rig which we are looking forward to using!”