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Apple explains how to use your iPhone as a high-quality Mac webcam with Continuity Camera

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In one of the eyebrow-raising moments during his During the keynotes of the Worldwide Developer Conference 2022, Apple presented a quirky approach to improving the camera quality of your Mac laptop by… using your iPhone as a whole.

Dubbed Continuity Camera, the option comes with macOS Ventura and will be a full-featured quality camera add-on for your Mac instead of the, ahem, hastily arranged tape-on solution it seemed at the keynote.

Apple iPhone Continuity Camera Features and Compatibility

  • iPhone 8 and later with iOS 16
  • Macs with macOS 13 Ventura
Apple’s engineer Karen Xing gave a long explanation how Continuity Camera would work and it is worth seeing in its entirety. iPhone will appear as a Mac webcam and microphone under various circumstances, such as macOS 13 on your computer and iOS 16 on your iPhone.
The Center Stage camera feature that automatically keeps the subject equidistant from the frame, as well as the Portrait Mode and Studio Light options that Apple offers on some of its recent devices, are also available here, under the camera options in the Control Center drop-down menu. menu of your iPhone, so you can swap them out at will.

Ms. Xing also explains that Apple will have an API useful for iOS 16 and macOS 13 developers to read, which will allow their app to automatically recognize your iPhone and use it as a webcam for your Mac.

This means that not only will FaceTime, Zoom or other popular video chat apps be available at launch, but potentially many more will be lined up, allowing for wider compatibility.

Practically speaking, the Continuous Camera option can be used automatically when your iPhone is on a stand and wired with a USB cable, or wirelessly when your Mac detects a “nearby” iPhone for a Bluetooth or Wi-i connection.

The Mac can capture your iPhone’s screen at 1440p resolution and a 60fps frame rate, while also letting you use Apple’s funky Desk View mode to project the flattened image from the iPhone’s ultra-wide camera, though it’s only can be captured at 30 fps.

In any case, the iPhone Continuity Camera option that will land with iOS 16 and macOS 13 appears to be a much more fleshed out affair than Apple had the time to let us know during the keynote presentation.

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