While most iPhone 7 Plus owners are busy capturing images in the new Portrait mode, a small section of users are complaining about a weird ‘watercolor’ camera problem. Users have taken it to Apple’s Support forums to express their frustration. According to Apple Insider, the complaints started surfacing around the same time as the Cupertino company’s Hello Again event where it unveiled the new MacBook Pro.

iPhone 7 Plus
Image Credit: Mac4Ever / YouTube Video Screenshot

iPhone 5S taking better photos than affected iPhone 7 Plus

Users affected by the problem said their dual-camera iPhone 7 Plus was taking inferior quality images. Some reported that even the iPhone 5S and iPhone 6 were taking better pictures than Apple’s latest 5.5-inch model. The photos taken by the iPhone 7 Plus were blurry and had a muted “watercolor” effect dominating the shot. The forum thread includes several example photos that seem to confirm that the image quality was much lower than what you would expect from the iPhone 7 Plus.

One user said turning off the “optimized storage” setting in the iPhone camera fixed the problem, but it didn’t work for everyone. Some users reported that the problem occurs both in RAW images as well as the Apple Photos app. However, a few others said the “watercolor” effect showed up only in the Photos-hosted pictures. The original poster claimed the issue first occurred while using the iOS 10.0.2, but it persists even in the latest iOS release.

Is it a software issue?

Some iPhone 7 owners have also reported the same issue. It indicates that the problem has little to do with the dual-camera system of the 5.5-inch model. According to Forbes, using a third-party camera app produces much higher quality images than the standard Camera app. It indicates that the problem could be due to a software issue related to image processing rather than a hardware issue.

An Apple representative told Apple Insider that there could be multiple root causes of the same issue. Users facing the problem are recommended to contact AppleCare or schedule an appointment at the Genius Bar for further assistance.

iPhone 7 Plus in high demand

The iPhone 7 Plus takes advantage of its dual-camera system to capture images in the Portrait mode. The wide-angle and telephoto lens create a shallow depth of field portrait photos with blurred background. The device has an image signal processor that dissects various layers of the photo before choosing what to blur with a “bokeh” effect.” The Portrait mode is still in beta, and it requires good lighting conditions to achieve the “bokeh” effect. It works on objects, people, as well as pets.

The iPhone 7 Plus sales have been so strong that Apple said it might not be able to fulfill all the orders by the end of this year. The company is selling everything it is making, said Apple CFO Luca Maestri. Analysts estimate that the discontinuation of Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 could help the iPhone 7 attract 5-7 million additional customers through the end of this year.