Chrome OS may be getting the necessary tools to control a movable camera, according to a recent post by Chromium developer François Beaufort from Google. He explains that an API is in the works to provide apps for Chrome OS with the ability to control what is known as a “PTZ Camera“. PTZ stands for pan, tilt, and zoom which are the primary movements for cameras such as ones used for surveillance, and other instances where the camera must be controlled remotely. This could open the door for home-monitoring apps for the Chromebooks, advanced video conferencing, or controls for a drone camera .
Beaufort also adds that the API will not be limited to controlling one device at a time; it will be able to connect the Chromebook to as many cameras as are available. This will help Chrome OS make a move into more fields of work, like amateur videography, as more and more apps make robust work like video editing possible for Chromebooks.
Home surveillance is likely going to be the biggest draw that the apps that might use this API will provide. Having a Chromebook that can access the security systems of a home from anywhere in the world with an internet connection would surely be an alluring possibility, if developed. There are plenty of native iOS and Android apps, even Mac and Windows programs, that harness the power of the connected world for various home security companies, but there are no options for Chromebook users.
An especially apt device for this is the Chromebox, currently marketed as a solution for business video conferencing. Not only would complete control of the camera enhance this experience, the Chromebox could become a central hub for home security automations, and could be stashed anywhere due to its small form factor. Of course, you don’t necessarily need a Chrome OS device to do this, a Raspberry Pi and some DIY know-how will do just fine.
Once in the hands of developers, there are lots of applications the API could be used for. Chrome OS would benefit greatly if tools like these catch on with developers, by gaining more ways to be used for real-life work, rather than just being a “glorified browser”, as some might have it. You can see the code for the API here.
Source: François Beaufort (Google+)