The CameraHelper provides helper methods to easily use the available camera frame sources to preview video, capture video frames and software bitmaps. The helper currently shows camera frame sources that support color video preview or video record streams.


Make sure you have the webcam capability enabled for your app to access the device's camera.


// Creates a Camera Helper and gets video frames from an available frame source.
using Microsoft.Toolkit.Uwp.Helpers.CameraHelper;

CameraHelper _cameraHelper = new CameraHelper();
var result = await _cameraHelper.InitializeAndStartCaptureAsync();

// Camera Initialization and Capture failed for some reason
if(result != CameraHelperResult.Success)
  // get error information
  var errorMessage = result.ToString();
  // Subscribe to get frames as they arrive
  cameraHelper.FrameArrived += CameraHelper_FrameArrived;

private void CameraHelper_FrameArrived(object sender, FrameEventArgs e)
  // Gets the current video frame
  VideoFrame currentVideoFrame  = e.VideoFrame;

  // Gets the software bitmap image
  SoftwareBitmap softwareBitmap = currentVideoFrame.SoftwareBitmap;

Cleaning up resources

As a developer, you will need to make sure the CameraHelper resources are cleaned up when appropriate. For example, if the CameraHelper is only used on one page, make sure to clean up the CameraHelper when navigating away from the page.

Likewise, make sure to handle app suspending and resuming - CameraHelper should be cleaned up when suspending and re-initialized when resuming.

Call CameraHelper.CleanupAsync() to clean up all internal resources. See the CameraHelper sample page in the sample app for full example.


Property Type Description
FrameSourceGroup MediaFrameSourceGroup Gets the currently selected MediaFrameSourceGroup for video preview. User can set this property to preview video from a specific source. If no MediaFrameSourceGroup is provided, Camera Helper selects the first available camera source to use for media capture.
FrameSource MediaFrameSource Gets the currently selected MediaFrameSource for video preview.


Methods Return Type Description
GetFrameSourceGroupsAsync() Task<IReadOnlyList> Gets a read only list of MediaFrameSourceGroups that support color video record or video preview streams.
InitializeAndStartCaptureAsync() Task Initializes Media Capture and Frame Reader for video preview and capture frames in real time.
CleanUpAsync() Task Use this asynchronous method to dispose Camera Helper resources
Dispose() void Use this method to dispose Camera Helper resources


Events Description
FrameArrived Fires when a new frame arrives.


Demonstrates using Camera Helper to get video frames from a specific media frame source group.

using Microsoft.Toolkit.Uwp.Helpers.CameraHelper;

var availableFrameSourceGroups = await CameraHelper.GetFrameSourceGroupsAsync();
if(availableFrameSourceGroups != null)
  CameraHelper cameraHelper = new CameraHelper() { FrameSourceGroup = availableFrameSourceGroups.FirstOrDefault() };
  var result = await _cameraHelper.InitializeAndStartCaptureAsync();

  // Camera Initialization succeeded
  if(result == CameraHelperResult.Success)
    // Subscribe to get frames as they arrive
    cameraHelper.FrameArrived += CameraHelper_FrameArrived;

    // Optionally set a different frame source format
    var newFormat = _cameraHelper.FrameFormatsAvailable.Find((format) => format.VideoFormat.Width == 640);
    if (newFormat != null)
        await _cameraHelper.FrameSource.SetFormatAsync(newFormat);

Sample Code

CameraHelper Sample Page Source. You can see this in action in Windows Community Toolkit Sample App.


Device family Universal, 10.0.17134.0 or higher
Namespace Microsoft.Toolkit.Uwp
NuGet package Microsoft.Toolkit.Uwp

API Source Code