Sometimes, the easiest way to share a funny conversation or picture is to take a screenshot and send it off. There are lots of options for screenshots: you can grab the entire screen or just a selection, and choose to save it to the desktop or the clipboard.
Here, find out everything you wanted to know (and more) about taking a screenshot on an iOS, Mac OS X, Android, or Windows device, and discover two cool apps that will upload your image to the web automatically for speedy sharing.
iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch
Press the Home button and the sleep/wake button at the same time to capture whatever is on the screen. The image will be saved to your Camera Roll.
Mac OS X
To take a screenshot, you can open the Grab application or use one of these keyboard shortcuts (to cancel out of any command, press escape).
- The entire screen — Press command + shift + 3
- A select portion of the screen — Press command + shift + 4
- Only a window — Press command + shift + 4 + space bar and select the window. It also works with the menu bar. This option will capture a window's shadows which looks nice in presentations.
The default setting on Mac OS X is to save the screen capture to your desktop, but you can save the image to your clipboard instead by holding down the control key while you press the other keys as listed above. This will enable you to paste the image into a document.
Apps exist that will automatically upload your screen capture to the Internet. Cloud App is a Mac desktop client that sits in your menu bar and will create a link to the image, then put it onto your clipboard. The app will notify you when the image is done uploading, and you can paste the link wherever you want. Droplr is similar: drag screen captures into the app, and Droplr will create a link for you to share.
How to grab screenshots on Android and Windows devices after the break.
If your device is running Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich), then hold the Volume Down and Power buttons simultaneously. The screen grab will be saved to the Gallery.
Some Android devices have specific shortcuts. The Galaxy Note and Galaxy S II (Android 3 and below) capture screens just like iOS devices: hold the Power and Home buttons at the same time. On the new Galaxy Note devices (Android 4.0 and up), swiping the screen to the right with the side of your hand will grab the entire screen. If the swiping motion doesn't work, then go to Settings > Motion > Hand Motion > and select Palm swipe to capture.
In Windows 7, to take a screenshot of the entire display, press the print screen key (simple, right?). To take just a select portion of the screen, press the alt + print screen keys. You can then paste the image into Paint and save as an image.
In Windows 8, press the Windows key + print screen, and the image will be saved to the Pictures folder in Library. Or, use the built-in Snipping Tool, which will allow you to take captures with different hand-drawn shapes and share the capture via email.
Droplr, the app that lets you drag and drop screen captures and uploads them to the web, is also available for Windows.