macOS 12.3 adds a new API designed to help improve screen recording

Macbook Pro With M1 Chip
Macbook Pro With M1 Chip (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple has a new API that's dedicated to screen recording.
  • ScreenCaptureKit could allow developers to record specific portions of a screen.

A new API attached to the first macOS 12.3 beta suggests that Apple is working to make it easier for screen recording apps to function.

With the arrival of macOS Monterey 12,3 in an initial beta form, Apple has added a new API dubbed ScreenCaptureKit (opens in new tab). As first reported by 9to5Mac, the API appears set to give third-party apps more control over screen recordings including the ability to record specific areas of a screen — useful for recording a particular app or interface, for example.

Here's how Apple describes its new API:

Use the ScreenCaptureKit framework to add support for high-performance screen recording to your Mac app. The framework gives you fine-grained control to select and stream only the content that you want to capture. As a stream captures new frames of video, it passes your app a CMSampleBuffer that contains the video data and its related metadata.

Use cases for such an API could see apps able to record only portions of the screen for video calling purposes, for example. While apps are already able to do something along those lines, developers had to create the implementation from the ground up which makes for added complication. The use of an API would standardize all of that across apps.

The macOS 12.3 beta is available for download right now. This is beta 1 and we expect many more releases before the update is made available to everyone. And even then we need developers to implement the features that could be made possible by this new API, too.

Oliver Haslam
Contributor

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.