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Microsoft will require all Windows 11 laptops to have a webcam from 2023

Windows 11

Last night, Microsoft finally unveiled the much-anticipated Windows 11 update. The new update comes with an updated UI, performance, and productivity improvements. Microsoft also released the minimum system requirements for Windows 11 which includes Secure Boot and TPM 2.0 among other things, but the latter can be bypassed for now.

However, buried deep inside Microsoft's documentation was the webcam requirement. For now, Microsoft notes that both front and rear webcams are optional. However, the company adds that all devices (except desktop PCs) will be required to have a forward-facing webcam. This condition will kick in from January 1, 2023 and should force manufacturers to include a webcam in devices like laptops or tablets.

Screenshot of Windows 11 minimum system requirements

Apart from that, Microsoft also noted that a webcam should have a High-Definition (HD) resolution or better. HD here refers to 720p with a resolution of 1280 x 720 and 1:1 aspect ratio. Furthermore, it also needs to have support for auto white-balance and auto exposure.

Screenshot of Windows 11 minimum system requirements

Lastly, Microsoft has also laid out some rules for devices that will come with a dedicated camera button. The Redmond giant notes that the camera button should be able to wake up the device when needed. The company, however, gives manufacturers the freedom to include either a dual-action camera or a single-action camera. Just for reference, the dual-action camera allows users to half-press as well as full-press the camera button while the single-action camera only supports full-press.

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