iPhone XS and XR selfie problems addressed in iOS 12.1

Eric Abent - Oct 23, 2018, 9:20 am CDT
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iPhone XS and XR selfie problems addressed in iOS 12.1

If you’ve noticed that the camera on your iPhone XS has been applying what feels like a beauty filter to your selfies, you definitely aren’t alone. Many users have made similar complaints since the launch of the iPhone XS, and it seems that the soon-to-be-released iPhone XR isn’t immune from this problem either. The good news is that it doesn’t seem like this was intentional, and it’s something Apple is looking to fix in iOS 12.1.

While beauty filters have been gaining popularity in some areas of the world, the idea that Apple would apply one to the front-facing cameras on the iPhone XS and XR is a little strange. Back at the end of September, it became clear that Apple didn’t actually plan to implement such a feature in these phones, as it said that it was looking into the details of user complaints. Now, it has apparently figured out the issue that’s causing everyone’s selfies to look smoother than they should.

Speaking to The Verge, Apple says that this smoothing is actually a result of a Smart HDR bug. For those who need a reminder, Smart HDR is a feature that snaps three photos in quick succession and then combines them to increase the dynamic range of the images you take. It’s a neat feature, but in this instance, Apple says that Smart HDR was selecting the wrong image as the base of the composition.

When you combine that with the fact that the front-facing cameras on the iPhone XS and XR don’t use optical image stabilization like the rear cameras do, the end result is a selfie that looks overly-smooth. Apple told The Verge that in iOS 12.1, Smart HDR will go back to picking the correct image as the base of its compositions, so you won’t have to worry about taking “beauty” shots any longer.

Currently, we don’t know when Apple will launch iOS 12.1, but the update is in beta if you’d like to take it for a spin yourself. Apple has been zipping through its beta releases for iOS 12.1 pretty fast, so the hope is that it won’t be long before the update is available for everyone. We’ll keep an ear to the ground for more, so stay tuned.


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