Microsoft details their plan to fix Windows 10 Anniversary Update webcam issues

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Over the last weekend, we reported about an issue in Windows 10 Anniversary Update which prevented some webcams from working. Microsoft confirmed the issue on their side and informed users that they are working on an update to fix the issue. Mike M from Windows Camera Team has now provided a detailed reply on Microsoft Forums about their plans to completely fix this issue on Windows 10. Read his reply below.

Hey folks, I have a couple of updates for you all, but before we get to that part, we want to thank you. The specific hardware and usage scenarios you’ve provided are excellent insight for us. We have been focusing on the Windows Insider Program flight data to monitor any issues. We hope in future we can get even better coverage through this data for the enterprise and business scenarios you’ve outlined. Now, let’s give you a little bit of insight into the engineering work being done to address your feedback. We have work in progress where the changes will be split up into three items.

The first change will cover the MJPEG issue. We have an internal prototype ready and it’s going through testing as fast as we can to verify it doesn’t introduce regressions. Once testing is complete, we will release it to servicing so it reaches you and your customers automatically through Windows Update. We expect this update path will happen in September. I remain committed to communicating more specific dates once I have confirmation.

The second change is exposing the H.264 media type. This change is more involved. The implementation is soon wrapping up, and once it does, this change will follow a similar process as the above. In addition to our internal testing, we plan to flight this change to our Windows Insiders, to get further verification insight and gather feedback from the community. We do this because, while we have many of the most popular commercially available cameras, the hardware ecosystem is so vast that it’s practically impossible for us to test every product out there. Since it will take some extra time for the H.264 work to go through this additional layer of testing, and we would prefer not to delay the MJPEG changes, we will ship these two separately. You can expect the MJPEG media type work to reach you first.

Finally, there is one last update that we’re working on which is to enable custom media types (like Bayer). This set of code changes is related to the H.264 work I mention above, so it’s likely that we’ll ship them together.

To ensure these changes will allow you to continue using your current devices, drivers and/or applications without changes we would appreciate your input. Please let me know what combinations of camera, driver (you can get the driver provider and version from Device Manager) and applications you’re using. This will help us cross check our current lab testing setups, broaden our validation coverage, and catch any issues earlier in the development cycle.

Once again, I’d like to reiterate our commitment to making these improvements in a timely fashion. We’re aiming to provide you and our customers with a camera experience as you knew it from before the Anniversary Update, without requiring you to update your applications or custom camera drivers, and we believe we’ll be able to achieve this goal. I’ll continue doing my best to give you regular updates on our progress, and I’ll let you know the dates when you can expect the updates to be published as soon as we have that information. The team greatly appreciates your patience!

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