How to take screenshots on Android phones

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A picture is worth a thousand words and it is also easier to share. That is the reason why the popularity of screenshots on Android phones is increasing. The functionality was officially introduced in Android 4.0, although some customization layers, like Samsung’s, had it before.

Now, the million dollar question is how to take a screenshot on my Android phone? The answer is the same as with any other question concerning Android: it depends. Different manufacturers have devised different ways of taking screenshots. Here you will find the instructions for most Android phones on the market today.

Default way to take screenshots

The official way of taking a screenshot on Android has not changed for the last five years. You must simultaneously press the power and the volume down buttons. Usually, a flash on the screen and a sound will notify you that a screenshot has been taken.

Several manufacturers respect this method, but not all. As you will see below, there are many ways to take screenshots on Android phones. This indicates that Android fragmentation is a real barrier to a consistent user experience.

The general rule

We have already seen the official way, but not all phone manufacturers comply with it. Instead, there is another premise that (almost) always holds true, although it is more flexible. To take a screenshot on the vast majority of Android phones you must press two physical buttons at the same time.

Taking into account that there are generally three or four physical buttons: power, home, volume up and volume down, leaves us with five possibilities:

  1. Power On and Volume up
  2. Power On and Volume Down
  3. Start and Volume Up
  4. Start and Volume Down
  5. Power On and Start

Almost certainly one of these combinations will take a screenshot on your mobile. In all cases, it is necessary to press both keys at the same time and hold them down for at least one second.

Screenshots with Google Assistant

Now that many Android devices support Google Assistant, you have a new way of taking screenshots at your disposal. It is not the fastest way. However, if for some reason it is not possible to use other methods it is a great option.

To take a screenshot with Google Assistant, you must launch it either by long pressing the Home button or by voice command. If you are in an application and not on the Desktop, one of the options to choose is called Share screenshot.

This method has a disadvantage – the screenshot is not saved in the Gallery of your mobile. Right after taking it, you must choose who you want to send it to with applications such as WhatsApp or Messenger.

Screenshots on Samsung mobiles

Samsung has an arsenal of models on the market and consequently there are differences in the way screenshots are taken. The classic way of taking a screenshot is with a simultaneous press of Power and Start buttons.

However, the latest Samsung devices do not have a physical home button. So, it is also possible to take a screenshot with the standard Android method. Simultaneously pressing Power and Volume Down buttons. This is possible even in older devices with a physical start button, which support both combinations.

Another way to take screenshots on Samsung phones is by sliding your hand vertically on the right edge, sweeping the screen. This method must be activated in the mobile settings for it to work.

Screenshots on Sony mobiles

Sony has a slightly different method of taking screenshots from other manufacturers. You must first press and hold the Power key until the shutdown pop-up menu opens. One of the options available is Screenshot. Tap on it to capture.

The default Android way of taking screenshots is also available on Sony devices. That is, you can simultaneously press the Power and Volume Down buttons.

Screenshots on LG mobiles

LG uses the standard Android system to take screenshots. That is, you must simultaneously press the Power and Volume Down keys. The only difference is that in this case the power key may be at the back of the phone.

Screenshots on Huawei phones

Another brand that offers an Android standard way of taking screenshots, is Huawei (at least in its latest models). To take a screenshot, simultaneously press the Power and Volume Down buttons. In some models it is also possible to take screenshots by tapping your knuckles twice, as if you were knocking on the door.

Screenshots on Xiaomi mobiles

Xiaomi has also opted for the standard Android method to take screenshots, both in its MIUI system and stock Android devices. The method is the same: simultaneously press the Power and Volume Down buttons.

Screenshots on HTC mobiles

On HTC phones you can use the traditional Android method to take screenshots. That is, simultaneously pressing the Power and Volume Down buttons. If you think that this combination is a bit backwards, you’re probably right. Many classic models with a physical home button also allow you to take a screenshot by pressing the Power and Home buttons.

Screenshots on ASUS mobiles

Screenshots on ASUS mobiles are taken with the standard Android button combination. That is, you must simultaneously press the Power and Volume Down buttons. The only thing you have to keep in mind is that, in older models, the volume buttons are on the back.

Screenshots on Motorola mobiles

It does not matter if you own the old Motorola mobile or Lenovo’s Motorola, because the method to take a screenshot is the same. You must simultaneously press the Power and Volume Down buttons. An animation and sound will notify you that the screenshot has been taken.

Screenshots on BQ mobiles

The Spanish / Vietnamese brand BQ offers the standard method for taking screenshots. So all you have to do is simultaneously press the Power and Volume Down buttons to take a screenshot.

Screenshots on OnePlus mobiles

OnePlus joins the majority by adopting the standard mode to take screenshots on Android phones. That is, by simultaneously pressing the Power and the Volume Down buttons, which in this case are at opposite edges.

Screenshots on Nexus / Pixel mobiles

As you might expect, Google follows official Android rules. To take a screenshot, follow the usual procedure. Press the Power and the Volume Down buttons simultaneously until an animation and sound notify you that the screenshot has been taken.

Screenshots on Nokia mobiles

Nokia has opted for stock Android for its mobiles. So, it is not surprising that the way of taking screenshots on this phone is straightforward. To take a screenshot on a Nokia mobile, press the Power and the Volume Down buttons simultaneously.

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