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‘Beautygate’: Apple promises to fix bug behind excessively smooth iPhone XS selfies

Apple has promised to fix a problem with the iPhone XS’ front-facing camera, which is resulting in users’ selfies looking unusually smooth.

The issue, which has been dubbed − sigh − ‘Beautygate’, has been a topic of discussion online ever since Apple released the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max.

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The problem was so widespread, in fact, that some users simply assumed that Apple had quietly bundled a ‘Beauty Mode’ type filter with the phones, and that the smoothing effect was intentional.

However, Apple has now admitted that Beautygate was the result of a bug. The company has told The Verge that it’s working on a fix for a bug affecting ‘Smart HDR’, the new photo-enhancing system that features on the XS and XS Max.

Smart HDR is designed to bring “more highlight and shadow detail to your photos”, says Apple.

It sets about doing this by shooting multiple frames at different exposures to help bring out things like highlight details, and also a long exposure for shadow details. It’s then supposed to identify the best parts of each photo and merge them together.

Unfortunately, at present Smart HDR is misbehaving, and is sometimes selecting the wrong image as the base frame of a shot.

However, Apple says it will fix the excessive smoothing issue in iOS 12.1. Unfortunately, the software update hasn’t yet been released to the public, though it’s expected to arrive at some point in the next few weeks.

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You can, though, download iOS 12.1 beta 5 right now, by following this link. It will be buggy, so we’d recommend waiting for the finished version to officially come out.

Have you been experiencing issues with the iPhone XS’ front-facing camera? Do you like or hate the Beauty Mode-esque effect? Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @TrustedReviews.

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