Apples iconic iSight webcam design makes a return in new 4K Dell UltraSharp camera

Dell has unveiled a new UltraSharp webcam that is sure to look familiar to Mac users. The UltraSharp webcam features a cylindrical design that heavily resembles Apple’s iconic iSight webcam, which Apple introduced at WWDC in 2003 and ultimately discontinued in 2008.

As The Verge reports, the UltraSharp features USB-C connectivity and supports recording or streaming in 4K:

The UltraSharp is a USB-C webcam that houses a Sony STARVIS CMOS 8.3-megapixel sensor. It’s capable of recording or streaming in 4K at 30 or 24 frames per second and in 1080p or 720p at 24, 30, or 60 frames per second. You can tweak the field of view (FOV) between 65 degrees for a close crop, 78 degrees, or 90 degrees for the widest crop available. The webcam has a bevy of auto-light correction features that aim to make your picture look good regardless of your lighting. It supports up to 5x digital zoom and has autofocus.

The UltraSharp supports both macOS and Windows, but you’ll need Dell’s Peripheral Manager software to access many of its features, and this software is only available on Windows. This includes the AI auto-framing feature, which follows your movements to keep you centered in the frame, similar to the new Center Stage feature found in the M1 iPad Pro. Also for Windows users, it features an infrared sensor that can tap into the Windows Hello face recognition platform.

There are some limitations, however, including price and the lack of a microphone:

But $199.99 isn’t cheap for a webcam, and I haven’t even gotten to its biggest omission: it doesn’t have an internal microphone. Dell said it was focused primarily on optics for this model, so you’ll need to source your own microphone — whether that’s a standalone USB or XLR mic or a headset.

For Mac users, the biggest standout feature here is the iSight-like design, which could make it a tempting option despite the limitations. For users who don’t care about the design, something like the Logitech Brio could be a better option if you need a standalone webcam.

Do you think Apple should make a standalone iSight camera again in 2021? Let us know down in the comments!

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