How to capture movies of your iOS device's screen

ios mirror1

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A reader who wishes to remain anonymous has a question about capturing an iOS screen for broadcast. This person writes:

I’m creating a website of Mac and iOS tutorials and tips and I’m wondering if there’s a way to make a screen recording in iOS like there is through QuickTime in OS X.

Regrettably, unless you jailbreak your device, there isn’t a way to capture its screen directly on the device. However, with the help of your Mac, it can be easily done.

Here at Macworld (and in plenty of other places I’ve seen) we use a tool such as App Dynamic’s $15 AirSever or Squirrels’ $13 Reflector. These are apps that you run on your Mac that allow you to wirelessly mirror your iOS device’s screen to your computer as well as capture whatever the device’s screen displays.

Once you install one or the other of these apps your Mac becomes an AirPlay destination for your device. So, on a device running iOS 7 you just swipe up from the bottom of the screen to expose Control Center and from the AirPlay menu, tap on the name of the Mac running AirServer or Reflector (these must be on the same local network).

When you do this a Mirroring switch will appear below the Mac’s name (see the image above). Flick the switch to the On (green) position and the device’s screen appears within a window on your Mac. You can then click on a Record button within the app to capture not only the device’s screen but also the audio it plays. If, for some reason, you’re unhappy with the recording features offered by the apps you’re welcome to use a different app to capture the video—QuickTime X or Telestream’s ScreenFlow, for example.

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