How to Take Photos and Record Video at the Same Time on an iPhone

Capture the perfect photo

If you have an iPhone, you can take a still photo while recording a video with your phone. When a perfect moment happens, you can capture it.

Instructions in this article apply to the iPhone 5 and newer—the 5C, 5S, SE, 6 series, 6S series, 7 series, 8 series, and iPhone X. Instructions also apply to the 6th generation iPod touch and the 4th generation iPad and newer.

How to Take Photos and Record Video at the Same Time

If you have one of the compatible iOS devices, here's how you do it:

  1. Tap the Camera app to open it.

  2. Slide the menu at the bottom of the screen until Video is centered above the large circular red button.

  3. Tap the red button to begin recording a video.

  4. When the video starts recording, a circular white button appears in the corner of the screen. Whether it's at the top or bottom depends on how you hold the device. Tap the white button to snap a photo of what's on the screen without interrupting the video.

    How to take a picture while shooting video in iOS

All still photos you take while recording a video are saved to the Photos app, just like any other photo.

One Drawback

There's one important thing to know about the photos you take this way: They're not the same resolution as photos you take when you're not also recording video.

The standard photo taken with the back camera on an iPhone 8's 12-megapixel camera is 4032 x 3024 pixels. The resolution of the photos taken while the phone is recording video is lower and depends on the resolution of the video. Photos taken during 4K video recording are higher resolution than those from 1080p videos, but both are lower than the standard photo resolution.

Here's how the resolution breaks down for recent models:

iPhone Model Standard Photo
Resolution
Photo Resolution
While Recording
1080p Video
Photo Resolution
While Recording
4K Video
Photo Resolution
While Recording
Slo Mo Video
iPhone 5 & 5S 3264 x 2448 1280 x 720 n/a n/a
iPhone 6 series 3264 x 2448 2720 x 1532 n/a n/a
iPhone SE 4032 x 3024 3412 x 1920 3840 x 2160 1280 x 720
iPhone 6S series 4032 x 3024 3412 x 1920 3840 x 2160 1280 x 720
iPhone 7 series 4032 x 3024 3412 x 1920 3840 x 2160 1280 x 720
iPhone 8 series 4032 x 3024 3412 x 1920 3840 x 2160 1280 x 720
iPhone X 4032 x 3024 3412 x 1920 3840 x 2160 1280 x 720

So, taking a photo while recording a video isn't the top resolution, but the photos you get from an iPhone 6S while recording video are nearly as good as the standard photos on an iPhone 6.

The loss of resolution is greater when you record in slow motion. Still, the standard resolutions are more than enough for many people's uses. Plus, losing some resolution is a decent trade-off for being able to capture both the photo and video at the same time.