There are times when you really need to share to others what’s on your Android device’s screen. At such moments, you’ll need to capture screenshots, which are nothing more than snapshots of whatever is currently showing on your screen. App developers take lots of screenshots to document their apps. Writers take screenshots to complement their online articles. Some gamers take screenshots of their game sessions. There are varied reasons for needing screenshots.
Related: how to take a screenshot on an iPad.
The good news is that taking screenshots on Android is a very easy task. You can do it blindfolded. Do you know how? In this guide we show you how to take screenshots on Android.
The general way to take a screenshot
Capturing a screenshot usually involves pressing two buttons on your Android device — either the Volume Down key and the Power button, or the Home button and the Power key.
When the right button combo is pressed, your device’s screen will flash, usually accompanied with a camera shutter sound. Sometimes, a pop-up message or notification alert appears, suggesting that the screenshot has been made.
At other times, you can find a screenshot option on the Power menu. Just long press the Power button, wait for the Power menu to appear, and select Take screenshot to capture a screenshot of the current screen. This can be a useful method, especially when pressing combos of physical buttons is difficult.
Android device manufacturers even include extra and unique ways of taking screenshots on your device. For instance, you can take a screenshot on the Galaxy Note series using the S Pen. In most high-end Samsung phones, you can take a screenshot by swiping the screen with the side of your palm. There are alternate ways to capture screenshots, and those may or may not be mentioned in this guide.
Important Note: The procedures described in this post are for stock software. Procedures for capturing screenshots under custom ROMs may be different.
Taking screenshots on Samsung devices
Devices with a physical home button
For many high-end Samsung phones with a physical Home button, you can use the Home + Power button combo to take screenshots.
Just press the two buttons simultaneously until the sides of the screen flash and you hear the camera shutter sound. You will also get a notification confirming that the screenshot has been captured.
Devices without a physical home button
A few Samsung devices, however, don’t have a physical Home button. They are rare (and often old), but there are some out there. One example is the Samsung Galaxy View. In this case, the button combo is Volume Down and Power, as usual with other devices. Hold down both buttons until your device takes a screenshot.
Certain tablets also have a quick launch button that can be set to capture screenshots.
On Samsung devices that come with the S Pen (e.g., the Galaxy Note series), you can use the stylus itself to take a screenshot. Just pull out the S Pen and launch Air Command (if it’s not done automatically), then select “Screen write”. Usually, after the screenshot is captured, the image will be immediately opened for editing. Just remember to save the edited screenshot afterwards.
Most high-end Samsung phones also let you capture screenshots by swiping the screen with the side of your hand. For this method to work, go to Settings > Motion and activate the “Palm swipe to capture” option.
Taking screenshots on HTC devices
On HTC devices, capturing a screenshot still involves the Home and Power buttons. But, instead of simultaneously holding them down, you hold down the Power button first, then tap the capacitive Home button quickly. The screen flashes, and you’ll hear audible feedback. You will also see a popup message confirming that your screenshot has been saved.
Looking for more details on HTC’s latest flagship, from taking screenshots to setup and more? Check out the HTC 10 beginner’s guide.
Taking screenshots on Sony devices
On Sony Xperia phones, the screenshot combo is Volume Down + Power. Hold down both buttons at the same time until the screen flashes and the screenshot thumbnail appears on the screen. A notification also appears on the notification menu once the screenshot has been captured.
There’s an alternate method, too. You can also capture a screenshot through the Power menu. Hold down the Power button until the Power dialog appears. Tap on Take Screenshot to capture the screen underneath the dialog.
Taking screenshots on LG devices
On LG devices, the button combination is still Volume Down + Power. Long-press these buttons at the same time until the screen flashes and you hear the capture tone. A notification also appears on the notification menu once the screenshot is captured.
You can also take a screenshot with Quick Memo, which can instantly capture and let you create doodles on your screenshots. Just toggle Quick Memo from the notification shade. Once enabled, the editing page will then appear. You can now write notes and doodles on the current screen. Tap the floppy disk icon to save your work.
Taking screenshots on Nexus devices
Capturing screenshots on the Google Nexus devices remains uniform — hold down both Volume Down and Power keys until you hear audio feedback. The screenshot thumbnail will flash briefly on the screen, and you will get a notification about your screenshot.
Capturing a screenshot on your Android device is easy. With screenshots, you can easily share what’s on your Android device to everyone. What Android device do you own? How do you capture screenshots on it? Share your screenshooting tales in the comments.