Apple allegedly recommending screen replacement for macOS Big Sur camera not working issue; likely a hardware problem?

Apple rolled out the current stable version of macOS — Big Sur — back in November 2020 and we expect nothing less when it comes to its successor.

Dubbed Monterey, Cupertino has been taking the next iteration of macOS for a spin over the past several weeks, with the current beta 5 having rolled out only a few days ago.

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With macOS 12 update still undergoing beta testing, one would expect to come across multiple bugs and issues when using it. This is a norm when it comes to beta software.

On the contrary, stable software is what users expect to come sans any major bugs and issues.

But then again, it’s software we are talking about and regardless of how good Apple’s dev team is, bugs and related problems are inevitable even in the stable version.

This is what macOS Big Sur users are currently having to deal with. In fact, we have a dedicated bug tracker that closely follows all the issues that pop up with every iteration of this OS that you can check out here.

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Earlier this year, we captured a major concern that Mac users had been dealing with for months. Affected users revealed that they were unable to make video calls since the camera was not working on their Mac models.

According to the reports, the problem had not occurred before the update to Big Sur, which basically tied it to the then-new Mac OS. Multiple Big Sur iterations later and the issue still lives on.

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I have had the same issue for 3 months. I’ve been through 4 different tech support calls. I went to the Apple Store and had my hardware tested to prove there’s no hardware issue. Finally, after a 6 hour call with one high level engineer, he informed me that the latest update was not just a software update. It alters your hardware, to the point that it has disabled cameras on Macbooks. Apple, this is on you. You have to solve it or replace our machines. My camera worked fine until I installed YOUR update. Fix my machine.
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So, if this is an issue that got triggered after an update to Big Sur, shouldn’t a similar update have addressed it by now, especially since it’s such an inconvenience to those affected?

Well, as of this writing, the current stable Mac OS available is Big Sur 11.5.2, and not even this iteration has addressed the issue with camera not working for those affected.

The usual troubleshooting options such as rebooting and even uninstalling and re-installing the full OS doesn’t fix the problem.

Im also encountering the same problem. I was using my camera for conferencing then suddenly it just does not work anymore. Tried updating to big sur 11.5.2 but still camera is not working. I have tried allowing the camera to access the app and restarted VDCAssistant but still its not working. Any workaround for this?
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I have the same problem on a 2018 MacBook Pro. Just been through tech support and re-installed os plus all the usual resets – problem still there. Taking it to a tech bar on Saturday
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So, given that no software update or any amount of troubleshooting has been able to address the problem, what now? Could this be a hardware issue?

Well, apparently, Apple has recommended screen replacement as a fix for the issue, suggesting that it could be more related to hardware than software as most affected users would like to believe.

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And indeed, an affected forum member says one of Apple’s high level engineers told them that the latest update was more than a software update since it also alters your Mac hardware, disabling the cameras while at it.

Quite a strange take, if you ask me. But hey, I’m not the high level Apple engineer in question and if true, you may have to part with several hundred dollars to replace the display screen.

Whether replacing the screen guarantees a fix for the camera not working issue on Mac remains unknown, but many will be hoping that the upcoming macOS 12 update finally solves this problem.

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Hillary Keverenge

A techy. Besides phones, I also enjoy the farm, music, football, and, of course, food.