How to Enable Screen Recording on iPhone & iPad in iOS

How to Record Screen on iPhone or iPad with iOS

Have you ever wondered how to record the screen of an iPhone or iPad? Thanks to the built-in iOS Screen Recording feature, you can capture recordings of an iPad or iPhone in use, and then save or share those recorded screen video files for any number of purposes.

To be able to use Screen Recording in iOS you will need to enable the screen recorder feature first, and then it’s just a matter of knowing how to use this excellent feature that is native in modern versions of iOS.

Read on to learn how to enable this feature first, and then how to capture and record the screen of an iPhone or iPad, with no computer needed. We’ll also show you some helpful tips for capturing screen recordings successfully in iOS.

Note: you will need a modern version of iOS to have native screen recording capabilities with the Screen Recording feature on an iPhone or iPad, this means iOS 12 and later and iOS 11 or later, as earlier versions do not support the feature natively. If you have an older version of iOS though there are still screen recording options available, which we’ll discuss further on.

How to Enable Screen Recording on iPhone or iPad

Here is how you can enable the native iOS Screen Recording feature:

  1. Open the “Settings” app
  2. Settings icon

  3. Choose “Control Center” within Settings and choose “Customize Controls”
  4. How to enable Screen Recorder in iOS

  5. Find “Screen Recording” and tap the green (+) plus button to add the screen recorder to Control Center in iOS, it will move to the “Include” section higher up
  6. How to enable Screen Recorder in iOS

  7. Exit out of Settings

Now you have enabled the iOS Screen Recorder. You can customize other Control Center options while you’re in that setting if you want, but we’re focusing on enabling the Screen Recording feature so that you can capture videos of what you are doing on an iPhone or iPad display.

How to Use Screen Recording in iOS

  1. Swipe to access Control Center (swipe down from the top-right of the screen on any iPhone or iPad without a Home button, swipe up from bottom of screen on any Home button device)
  2. Tap the Screen Recording button in Control Center, it looks like a little (O) circle button, this will count down from 3… 2… 1… to begin recording what’s on screen
  3. How to use Screen Recording in iOS on iPhone or iPad

  4. Use the iPhone or iPad doing what you want to be recorded, when finished recording tap the red button at the top of the screen, or return to Control Center and tap the stop recording button there
  5. How to use Screen Recording in iOS on iPhone or iPad

Once finished you will get a little notificaiton alerting you to the screen recording being captured successfully.

How to use Screen Recording in iOS on iPhone or iPad

The captured screen recording video will appear in the Photos app Camera Roll like any other recently recorded video, photo, or screen capture, except of course it’s a recording of the screen itself.

You’ll know the screen is recording because of the pulsating red recording icon / button visible at the top of the iOS device screen. If there is no red indicator, the screen is not being recorded.

This works exactly the same to capture a screen recording on iPhone and iPad, the process is identical, but of course the output of the saved screen recording video will be sized differently depending on the iOS device being used, as well as the devices screen orientation (for example if you record an iPad in horizontal mode versus vertical mode, or an iPhone, or if you’re capturing a recording of a particular app being used).

iOS Screen Recording Tips

Some additional helpful tips for capturing screen recordings on iPhone and iPad include:

  • You can enable or disable Microphone recording (audio capture) to go along with the screen recording if desired by long-pressing on the Screen Record button while in Control Center and toggling that setting on or off
  • You can stop screen recordings by tapping the red button at the top of the scree, or by going back to Control Center and tapping the stop button there too
  • How to stop a screen recording in iOS

  • To have a clutter-free screen capture, it’s often a good idea to place an iPhone or iPad into Do Not Disturb mode first so that notifications, alerts, calls, and messages don’t appear on the display while you’re trying to capture something else
  • Use the 3 second countdown to your advantage
  • You can always edit the screen recording captured video with any regular video editor on the iPhone or iPad after the fact, even if it’s just trimming the video length in iOS Photos app, or using iMovie to add text captions in iOS or to zoom or crop the video in iOS iMovie as well
  • Transferring or sending the video to a Mac or PC to edit there is also possible just like sending and sharing any other video file or movie (AirDrop works great for transferring from iOS to the Mac quickly and wirelessly)
  • You can upload the screen recordings as screencasts to a cloud server, work network, any number of social sharing sites, or even to your own computer

* The native screen recording tool in iOS is not the only way to capture a screen recording of an iPhone or iPad. Nearly all versions of iOS, including the most recent releases, also support screen recording of iPhone and iPad with a Mac by using QuickTime and a USB cable, which is very similar to how the Mac screen recording in QuickTime works as well.

Help, I can’t find Screen Recorder in Control Center!

You must have iOS 11 or iOS 12 or later to have Screen Recording as an option. If you do, be sure Screen Recorder is enabled and added to Control Center following the instructions above.

If enabled successfully, iOS Screen Recording option will be in the ‘Included’ section of Control Center like so:

Screen Recorder enabled in iOS

Why Record the Screen of iPhone or iPad?

Many people may want to record the screens of their iPhone or iPad performing various actions, but it is particularly common in technical circles, IT departments, tutorials and how-to guides and websites (like here on!), artists, gamers, and with educators and teachers.

You can record a task being performed on a screen, screen record an app being used or a game being played, you could screen record a bug or an error and how you reproduce it, you can capture a walkthrough on how to perform a particular task, and much more.

How to enable and use Screen Recording on iPhone and iPad

Do you have any helpful tips or tricks about screen recording on iPhone or iPad with the native iOS Screen Recorder tool? Share with us in the comments below!


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