Being able to take a screenshot can be incredibly useful, whether you’re using the tool as a quick way to save a picture, message or piece of information, or a way to illustrate helpful how-to articles such as this one.
But not all phones take screenshots in the same way. In fact, not even all Samsung phones do. The screenshot-taking method on devices in the newly released Samsung Galaxy S23 line, for instance, is different to the method used by older Samsung models.
The good news, though, is that capturing a screenshot is always a simple process – regardless of the handset you own – and below, we've detailed all the possible methods of taking a screenshot with a Samsung phone, starting with the most commonly used one.
Steps for how to screenshot on a Samsung phone
- Press the power and volume down keys simultaneously OR
- Press the power and home key simultaneously OR
- Swipe the edge of your hand across the screen OR
- Use screen write or smart select on the S Pen menu
Step by step guide for how to take a screenshot on a Samsung phone
Need more detailed information? Here are all the methods for screenshotting with a Samsung phone, followed by information on scrolling screenshots and how to view and edit your captured image.
1. Press the power and volume down keys
Many recent Samsung phones – including those in the Galaxy S23, Galaxy S22 and Galaxy S21 lines – let you take a screenshot simply by pressing the volume down and power buttons at the same time. In fact, if your phone has both of these buttons then this method should work.
You’ll know a screenshot has been taken as your display will flash, likely accompanied by a sound if you don’t have your phone muted.
If your phone doesn’t have a Bixby button then this should just be a quick tap rather than holding the buttons, as the latter is likely to open the power menu. On handsets with a Bixby button, a longer hold is more likely to get the job done.
2. Press the power and home keys
For Samsung phones with a physical home key under the display, you simply press and hold that button and the power button at the same time to take a screenshot. You can let go when the screen flashes.
This method is mostly used on older Samsung handsets.
3. Swipe your hand
In addition to pressing one of the button combinations above, many Samsung phones also let you swipe the edge of your hand across the screen (from left to right) to take a screenshot.
As with other methods, your screen will flash when the screenshot has been taken, and in theory, this could be the fastest and slickest way to take a screenshot – except in practice we find it a bit hit-and-miss, so it might take a while to consistently get the technique right.
You may also need to enable this gesture control before you can use it. To do that, head to Settings > Advanced features > Motions and gestures, then tap the toggle next to ‘Palm swipe to capture.’
4. Use the S Pen
As well as one or more of the methods above, owners of Samsung phones with S Pens – such as the Galaxy Note line and the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra – can use their stylus to take a screenshot.
There are two ways to do this. One is to remove the S Pen from its holder, then open the S Pen menu and tap ‘smart select.’ Then simply select the part of the screen that you want to capture.
The other method is to tap ‘screen write’ in the S Pen menu, and then select the part of the screen you want to capture.
These methods are handy if you don’t want to capture the whole screen.
Step by step guide for how to take a scrolling screenshot on a Samsung phone
If you want to capture more than one full screen of information, then you’ll need a scrolling screenshot. To take one of these, use one of the button or gesture methods above, then notice the icons that briefly appear at the bottom of the display when the screenshot is taken.
One of these should be a picture of two downward arrows in a box – it may also say ‘scroll capture.’ Tap this, and your screenshot will scroll down to capture more of the page. If you still need to capture more then just keep tapping it until you’ve got everything you need. If that icon doesn’t appear then you’ve likely captured everything already.
Step by step guide for how to view and edit screenshots Samsung phone
When you take a screenshot, you’ll see a number of icons briefly appear at the bottom of the display, along with a thumbnail of the screenshot itself. Tap the thumbnail to open it – or just head to the gallery app.
To edit, hit the edit button or pencil icon while viewing the screenshot, or - if you want to annotate it - hit the icon that looks like a pencil next to a square that appears when you take a screenshot.
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James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to 3G.co.uk, 4G.co.uk and 5G.co.uk and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.
- Josephine WatsonManaging Editor, Lifestyle