Executive Editor, MacworldJUL 27, 2020 6:23 am PDT
Whether you just bought your first iPhone or have been using one since the home button clicked, there’s one thing you might not know: how to take a screenshot. But we’re here to help, no matter which model of iPhone you’re using. Here’s how.
iPhone 8 or earlier
If you have an iPhone with a home button, you’ll use that button to take a screenshot. Simply hold down the home button and the power button for a second or two and let go. Your iPhone will flash and make a click noise (if the audio is turned on) and a screenshot will be recorded.
The iPhone SE has the “old” iPhone design, so it works the same as the iPhone 8. Press the home and the power buttons for a second or two and your screenshot will appear in the bottom left corner of the screen.
iPhone X or later
The newest iPhones no longer have a home button, so the method of taking a screenshot changed. Instead of using the home button, you press and hold at the same time the volume up button and the power button for a second, then release. Your iPhone will flash and buzz, and your screen will be shot.
Apple doesn’t offer shortcut for taking screenshots in iOS proper, but you can add one if you’d like. To find it, head over to Settings, then General > Accessibility. Scroll down to AssistiveTouch. Turn it on and a small circle will appear on your home screen containing shortcuts to various actions, one of which will be taking screenshot. (Initially the option will be on the second page of the Device menu, but you can customize it inside the Settings tab.) Then, when you want to take a screenshot, you’ll only need to open the on-screen menu and tap the screenshot icon. And don’t worry, it won’t capture the AssistiveTouch overlay with it.
Sadly, Apple hasn’t taught Siri to take a screenshot, so going hands free is out of the picture. Instead, Siri will tell you how to take a screenshot with your particular phone when you say, “Hey Siri, take a screenshot.” But we’re keeping our fingers crossed that Siri-enabled screenshotting is enabled in a future update.
Editing (iOS 10 and earlier)
After you snap your screenshot, you’ll probably want to edit or share it. To do so on iPhones that haven’t been updates past iOS 10, head over to Apple’s Photos app and find it at the top of your camera roll. Tapping the thumbnail will open it and the Edit button will let you crop, mark up, and adjust as needed. Then press Done to save it.
Editing (iOS 11 and later)
Apple introduced a new screenshot interface in iOS 11, and it’s a great one. When you snap a screenshot, a small thumbnail will appear in the lower-left corner. You can wait for it to disappear or swipe it away, but if you want to act on the screenshot as soon as you snap it, you can tap it to be taken directly to the editing interface. Inside you’ll be able to crop and mark up your image and share it, with the option to delete when you’re done so it doesn’t clutter up your camera roll.
Michael Simon has been covering Apple since the iPod was the iWalk. His obsession with technology goes back to his first PC—the IBM Thinkpad with the lift-up keyboard for swapping out the drive. He's still waiting for that to come back in style tbh.