Since the release of the iPhone XS and XS Max last month, many users have complained about a smoothing of selfie photos from the flagship devices. Dubbed “Beautygate”, Apple has been accused of using filters to soften selfies to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and other finer details on photos. Apple has denied that it is using such a filter but has indicated to The Verge that they are fixing the problem with the release of iOS 12.1.
According to the report on the site, Apple is fixing Smart HDR which, to this point, has been selecting the wrong frame on selfies. The issue stems from the feature sometimes selecting a frame that had a longer shutter speed, thus creating blur – a smoothing effect in other words.
With the release of iOS 12.1, which is now in its fifth beta, the Smart HDR feature will select the shorter, sharpest frame of the set of photos and use that image. This should, in theory, eliminate the issue for iPhone XS and XS Max owners.
While Apple gave The Verge a detailed explanation of why this was happening, it is not the first time that a phone manufacture has tried to “clean up” selfie photos. Samsung has used a beauty filter on their Galaxy devices as has Huawei on a number of their phones. In both cases, it was an actual filter which could be turned off. In the case of Apple, all indications from the Cupertino company suggests it is a software issue and not any filtering.