How to take a Screenshot with your smartphone

While not every phone has a built in feature that will allow you to capture whatever is currently displaying on its screen, most modern smartphones will have this ability and the steps used to take a screenshot will vary from device to device. This guide includes an extensive list of techniques that can be used to take screenshots on some of the more popular smartphones available in the world today.

Some common methods for taking screenshots include:

Some techniques commonly used to take screenshots on other popular smartphones

How to take a screenshot on an Apple iPhone

Press and hold the circular Home button and the Sleep/Wake button simultaneously for about a second. You will hear the camera shutter sound to confirm that the screen has been captured and the screenshot(s) should automatically be added to the Camera Roll within your iPhone’s Photos application.

To access your newly acquired screenshots you can press the Home button to go back to your home screen, and then tap the Photos icon/app, choose Camera Roll and the last picture should be your most recent screenshot.

Note: this method should work on every iPhone except for the original (iPhone 1st generation).

Taking a Screenshot on an Android

Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (and later releases)

A very common method of capturing a screenshot on a smartphone operating on Android 4.0, and later releases of Android, would be to press the Power key and the Volume Down key at the same time. This works on many modern smartphones and should be one of the first methods used when trying to take a screenshot on your Android cell phone. Don’t forget to hold both the Power and Volume Down buttons simultaneously and at the same time until you hear the shutter click sound or see the screenshot capture.

You can open and view your screenshots by accessing your Androids Gallery application and then opening the Screenshots folder/album.

Android 2.3 Gingerbread

Taking a Screenshot with a phone running on Android 2.3 Gingerbread is possible on some devices but on earlier releases of Android and for many phones utilizing Gingerbread this may not be possible right out of the box and my require some tinkering in order to add this feature to your smartphone. This would likely include rooting your cell phone and installing a third party application from the Google Play Store. A little more tedious to setup but should make taking a screenshot possible even if that feature didn’t originally come with your Android.

How to take a screenshot on a Windows phone

Windows Phone 8.1

To capture a screenshot on a Windows 8.1 cell phone, press the Power button and the Volume Up button at the same time. These Screen captures should automatically save to the Screenshots album in the Photos Hub.

Windows Phone 8

Taking a screenshot on a Windows 8 phone can be accomplished by pressing and holding the Start button (which looks like the Windows Logo) and the Power key at the same time.

Windows Phone 7

Unfortunately, Windows phone 7 and 7.5 do not provide a way to take screenshots without unlocking the phone with developer tools.

How to capture screenshots on a Blackberry

Once you are on the screen that you would like to capture press both the Volume Up and Volume Down keys at the same time. When you hear the shutter sound your screen is captured!

You should then be able to locate these images in your BlackBerry Smartphones Camera folder. To open your Camera folder open the File Manager, make sure Device is selected (note: your screenshots should get saved to your cell phones internal storage by default), and then open the Camera folder to find your newly captured screenshots.

This method only seems to be available on BlackBerry 10 smartphones operating on the latest version of BlackBerry 10 OS (and later releases). These smartphones include and are not limited to the BlackBerry Q5, Q10, Z3, Z10, Z30, BlackBerry Passport, etc.

If your BlackBerry was not released with the BlackBerry 10 OS (or later) then this screenshot technique may not be available for your device. In fact BlackBerry phones have gone without a screen capture feature until quite recently (BB10) so if you have an earlier version of BlackBerry and you absolutely need to take screenshots then configuring your phone to take screenshots may take a little work and tinkering. With some research online you should be able to locate some suggestions including the use of a Computer or downloading third party software onto your phone.

How to take a screenshot on other popular smartphones which may differ from the general process

While the steps and advice listed above is targeted more towards Operating Systems as a whole and more or less covers a wide range of devices I thought that I should also include how to take a screenshot on other popular smartphones which may differ from the general process.

How to take screenshots on a Samsung Galaxy

While built on the Android platform instead of using the Volume Down and Power keys to take a screenshot most of the smartphones in the Samsung Galaxy series allow you to press and hold the Power button and Home key at the same time in order to capture the screenshot. The outside boarder of the screen should briefly flash white and you should hear the same sound that your camera makes when taking a picture. Afterwards the screenshot(s) should be saved to your Samsung Galaxy’s gallery within the Screenshots folder/album.

Many Galaxy smartphones also allow you to take a screenshot using a unique palm swipe method. Once enabling this feature (typically by accessing your Samsungs Settings > My device > Motions and gestures > and then making sure that the Palm motion option is switched to the ON position) you are supposed to be able to capture a screenshot by swiping above your display screen from right to left or vice versa with the side of your hand. Note: on the S5 its Settings > Motions and gestures > Palm swipe to capture > switch toggle ON.

~Personal side note: I had the hardest time getting this to work on my Samsung Galaxy S4 until I discovered that you have to actually have your hand “keep in contact” or physically touch the display when swiping the edge of your hand across the screen. Samsung added this little detail/tip later which definitely helped my user experience when trying to utilize the palm swipe to capture feature. If you seem to have any issues with this particular method then make sure to take this little tip into consideration and verify that the side of your hand is making contact with the screen. But I digress. ~

These two screenshot capture methods can be used on many Samsung Galaxy smartphones including the Galaxy S3, Galaxy S4, Galaxy S4 Active, Galaxy S4 Zoom, Galaxy S4 Mini, Galaxy S5, Galaxy Note, Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy Mega 6.3, etc. and the screenshot method which uses the hardware keys can be utilized on many different Samsung Galaxy smartphones so long as they possess a Home button.

Still looking for a way to take a screenshot on your smartphone?

It would be impossible for me to list all of the techniques used to take a screenshot on every smartphone available or to include how to add the screenshot feature to a smartphone which doesn’t have this feature pre-installed or available. I do wish to mention however that where there is a will there is a way and while not every smartphone has a screen capture feature built in one of the quickest way to find the method used to take a screenshot on your cell phone would be to perform a quick search online.

Thank you for reading

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