MacBook Air M2 highlights Apple's biggest laptops issue – poor cameras

Who is ever going to use Continuity Camera to turn their iPhone into a webcam? Make the MacBook cameras better!

WWDC 2022
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple's WWDC 2022 keynote was a bumper ride, introducing an all-new MacBook Air design, paired with the next-gen M2 Apple silicon. It's all powerful, far better looking, and I'm totally sold on it.

Well, except for one feature! What's going on with the cameras? Sure, Apple has finally put a 1080p Full HD sensor into this forthcoming laptop – and having done many calls on my 2020 MacBook Air, I can confirm the older 720p camera is poor – but that's about as far as it goes. 

As you can see from the image above, the new MacBook Air with M2 has a notched display. Given the issues some software has caused with that in the 16-inch MacBook Pro, I'm not exactly enamoured by its presence, but could probably learn to live with it. 

Continuity Camera

iPhone as webcam in Continuity Camera on MacBook

(Image credit: Apple)

But, no, that's not my biggest gripe. That's to do with something sort-of different, but sort-of related (if Apple gets its way anyway): Continuity Camera. This feature, as outlayed at the WWDC 2022 keynote, seems to think that people are going to use their iPhone as a webcam. I know I'm not going to attach a clamp case to my phone and dangle it off a MacBook screen anyway. 

The reason this is grinding my gears – and this is after a really great WWDC, which showcased stacks of great new iOS 16 features, among plenty more – is that the solution is surely simpler? Just put better cameras in MacBooks? With so much conference calling now a staple of life, it's a more desirable feature than ever.

Although credit where it's due: Continuity Camera can use the iPhone's advanced Studio Light for software-based illumination and, thanks to its multiple lenses, can also present a Desktop Mode whereby a top-down render of your actual desk can be displayed in real-time too. That, I must say, is pretty darn cool. Now just make the next MacBooks do that without the need for an iPhone webcam please. 

Mike Lowe
Tech Editor

Mike has been writing about consumer technology for 15 years and is T3's Tech Editor. As a phones expert he's seen hundreds of handsets over the years – swathes of Android devices, a smattering of iPhones, and a batch of Windows Phone products (remember those?). But that's not all, as a tech aficionado his beat for T3 also covers tablets, laptops, gaming, home cinema, TVs, speakers and more – there's barely a stone unturned that he's not had a hand on. Previously the Reviews Editor at Pocket-lint for a full decade, he's also provided work for publications such as Wired, The Guardian, Metro, and more. In addition to his tech knowledge, Mike is also a flights and travel expert, having travelled the globe extensively. You'll likely find him setting up a new mobile phone, critiquing the next MacBook, all while planning his next getaway... or cycling somewhere.