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Apple pushes update to Studio Display that fixes webcam issues

Apple’s Studio Display is set to get a fix for its webcam issues in the form of a software update after it was initially plagued with poor reviews from leading tech journalists.

The Monterey 12.4 beta software has been made available as of Tuesday, first to developers, but everyone else should also be able to access the update through Apple’s public beta program later in the day.

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Users should be able to update their Studio Display to Firmware Version 15.5 (Build 19F5062g) by selecting System Preferences > Software Update, with the appropriate developer or public beta software installed first. Apple spokesperson Jennie Orphanopoulos told The Verge that the update addresses “noise reduction, contrast, and framing” on the web camera of the Studio Display.

After being announced in mid-March, several reviewers, including Joanna Stern of the Wall Street Journal and The Verge editor Nilay Pate, had harsh opinions about the 12-megapixel ultrawide front camera on the Studio Display. Stern compared the image quality of the Studio Display to that of an “old BlackBerry,” while Patel described having abysmal results with the webcam on several apps, including FaceTime, Zoom, Photo Booth, and QuickTime.

Many were surprised at this feature mishap that plagued the Studio Display, considering it has a similar camera to that of an iPhone 11 — a 12-megapixel lens with an f/2.4 aperture. The display is also powered by an A13 chip, The Verge added.

However, the product is essentially a 27-inch smart display and is currently unique in Apple’s device lineup, making it apt for bugs and other mishaps.

At the time of the original incident, Apple responded to journalists, stating that the company has “discovered an issue where the system is not behaving as expected.”

The Studio Display currently sells for $1,600 as a peripheral for Apple’s M1 Ultra-powered Mac Studio desktop, which sells for $4,000.

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