Camera face detection sample

Provides an end-to-end sample to show how to write a camera application using the Windows.Media.Capture API in conjunction with orientation sensors to cover the functions that most camera apps will require. In addition, it will show a simple way to use the Face Detection effect included in Windows. This sample is based on the Basic camera app sample.

Note: This sample is part of a large collection of UWP feature samples. You can download this sample as a standalone ZIP file from, or you can download the entire collection as a single ZIP file, but be sure to unzip everything to access shared dependencies. For more info on working with the ZIP file, the samples collection, and GitHub, see Get the UWP samples from GitHub. For more samples, see the Samples portal on the Windows Dev Center.

Specifically, this sample shows how to:

  1. Manage the MediaCapture object throughout the lifecycle of the app and through navigation events.
  2. Acquire a camera located on a specific side of the device. In this case, the sample attempts to get the front camera.
  3. Start and stop the preview to a UI element, including mirroring for front-facing cameras.
  4. Take a regular picture to a file, taking into account the orientation of the device.
  5. Handle rotation events for both, the device moving in space and the page orientation changing on the screen. Also apply any necessary corrections to the preview stream rotation.
  6. Handle MediaCapture Failed event to clean up the MediaCapture instance when an error occurs.
  7. Manage the Face Detection effect, including creation, configuration, activation/deactivation, registering for events, and cleanup.
  8. Render face bounding boxes as an overlay on the camera preview, taking mirroring and rotation into account.

This sample also implements a custom UI to better simulate the experience that a camera application would provide, so any messages intended for the developer are printed to the debug console.


Capture photos and video with MediaCapture
Media capture using capture device
Using the Face Detection effect


Windows.Media.Capture.MediaCapture namespace
Windows.Media.Capture.MediaCaptureInitializationSettings constructor
Windows.Media.Capture.MediaCaptureInitilizationSettings.VideoDeviceId property
Windows.Devices.Enumeration namespace
Windows.Devices.Enumeration.DeviceInformation class
Windows.Devices.Sensors.SimpleOrientationSensor class
Windows.Graphics.Display.DisplayInformation class
Windows.Phone.UI.Input.HardwareButtons.CameraPressed event
Windows.Graphics.Imaging.BitmapDecoder class
Windows.Graphics.Imaging.BitmapEncoder class

System requirements

  • Windows 10
  • Camera

Build the sample

  1. If you download the samples ZIP, be sure to unzip the entire archive, not just the folder with the sample you want to build.
  2. Start Microsoft Visual Studio and select File > Open > Project/Solution.
  3. Starting in the folder where you unzipped the samples, go to the Samples subfolder, then the subfolder for this specific sample, then the subfolder for your preferred language (C++, C#, or JavaScript). Double-click the Visual Studio Solution (.sln) file.
  4. Press Ctrl+Shift+B, or select Build > Build Solution.

Run the sample

The next steps depend on whether you just want to deploy the sample or you want to both deploy and run it.

Deploying the sample:

  1. Select Build > Deploy Solution.

Deploying and running the sample:

  1. To debug the sample and then run it, press F5 or select Debug > Start Debugging. To run the sample without debugging, press Ctrl+F5 or select Debug > Start Without Debugging.