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In brief: Microsoft has doubled down on workplace and collaboration offerings ever since the pandemic began, and the company now looks to complement its software suite with a new webcam that will be unveiled alongside the upcoming Surface Laptop 4 and other peripherals at a hardware event next month.
The humble webcam contributed to a whopping 85 percent growth in sales for Logitech in the company's most recent quarter, so it's easy to see why Microsoft would want to capitalize on this product category in an increasingly remotely working world.
While the Redmond firm continues to sell the LifeCam-branded standalone webcams launched in 2006, the timing seems ripe for a new model packing a modern feature set and image sensor that gives businesses and users more choice. It could also serve as a viable alternative to the abysmal webcams that are still found in most new laptops.
According to Petri's Brad Sams, Microsoft's webcam will have a privacy cover and HDR support, however, it's unlikely to capture in 4K resolution. While 1080p makes for a fairly decent teleconferencing experience, less network load, and could help keep the MSRP down, users are likely going to expect Windows Hello support from Microsoft's offering.
It remains to be seen if we'll get the first Surface-branded webcam at Microsoft's spring hardware event, where the company will show off the upcoming Surface Laptop 4. Sams says fans can also expect Microsoft to announce audio-related peripherals in addition to the webcam, and even a dongle accessory.