One such function has the webcam act as a "magic mirror" to allow an online shopper to view a virtual item on themselves.
Various software tools in wide use can be employed for this, such as Pic Master (for use with Windows operating systems), Photo Booth (Mac), or Cheese (with Unix systems).
For a more complete list see Comparison of webcam software.
The video streams provided by webcams can be used for a number of purposes, each using appropriate software: Most modern webcams are capable of capturing arterial pulse rate by the use of a simple algorithmic trick.
Researchers claim that this method is accurate to ±5 bpm.
Webcams may be installed at places such as childcare centres, offices, shops and private areas to monitor security and general activity.