I'm known as the technical person in my circle of friends and family (quite appropriately, as I'm a nanotechnology student and do quantum physics). I'm usually the first port of call when a computer breaks down or something just plain stops working, and every time, I recommend a Mac. Now, however, somebody actually is considering a Mac. Their machine broke down again, and they've just been pleasantly surprised about the price of a Mac Mini. One of the activities they do on their computer quite frequently is video conferencing (I think you can see where this is going). Macs have appalling webcam support. - Lots of webcams just plain aren't compatible with the Mac, but are compatible with Windows. - Of those that are compatible with OSX, nearly all require a driver from a 3rd party. Wasn't OSX this OS where everything just worked? - Some of those 3rd party drivers are shareware and require you to pay for compatibility that should have been in the box (e.g. IOXperts). - iChat doesn't support USB webcams unless you buy the shareware IChatUSBCam The state of webcam support in OSX is simple: There are large holes in the platform and 3rd parties are plugging them but charging you for it. Here are some things Apple can do to fix the problem: - Bring back the external iSight. They still go for a bit on eBay, so there is clearly a market for cameras that work seamlessly with the Mac. I'd buy one. - Acquire Macam. Ship it with OSX to improve built-in driver support. Apple can get the documentation needed from 3rd parties to expand compatibility, and have shown with WebKit that they can run an open-source project. Having it built-in would provide plug&play compatibility with webcams, something Apple sorely needs. - Work with 3rd parties to include drivers written by the manufacturer with OSX, in much the same way as they do for printer drivers. In any case, they should free iChat to accept external webcams with out iChatUSBCam.