Apple’s iPhone is one of the worlds most popular cameras, yet most users are unaware of many of the features Apple have included.
The following list offers a range of useful tips and tricks to help you shoot better and faster with the iPhone
1. Get to ‘Camera’ quickly when your iPhone is asleep
It is easy to get to your iPhone camera from sleep.
Just press the home or wake/sleep button, slide the camera icon (iOS 5+ required) and you are straight into your camera.
2. ‘Half Press’ – lock focus and get more immediate shutter response
Your iPhone camera can perform a ‘Half Press’ similar to a regular camera.
First, frame your shot.
Then press and hold the on screen shutter button and the iPhone will focus but will NOT release the shutter until you then release the shutter button.
3. Real Shutter Release button.
The + volume control button can act as a shutter release button affording a more secure grip and less chance of camera shake
4. Cable Release.
The + volume control button on your Apple headphones can act as a shutter release
5. Shooting at reduced resolution.
When file size is all that matters your iPhone camera is ready to take low resolution images.
Simply open the ‘Messages’ App, start a message and tap the camera icon – from here images will be captured at a low resolution (1024×768 on iPhone 4S at time of writing).
These images can be emailed from ‘Messages’
That’s right, the ‘Messages’ app can send to email addresses. Or they can be copied and pasted into mail, pages, keynote etc.
6. AE/AF Lock.
Often a camera will make an incorrect exposure decision due to an abundance of bright or dark tones in the image (it can also fail to focus correctly).
AE/AF Lock allows you lock the exposure based on the brightness values elsewhere in the scene and at the same time lock focus on that part of the scene.
To use AE/AF lock, tap and hold on dark objects to brighten and lock exposure (focus will be locked too).
If you tap and hold on light objects the image will darken instead.
Ideally you would locate objects that are the same distance as your subject and with balanced tones (neither too dark or too light), then touch and hold on the screen in this area to activate AE/AF Lock
7. ‘Rule of Thirds’ – Compositional aid.
Under the ‘Options’ button it is possible to activate a ‘Rule of Thirds’ grid. This grid overlays the screen and assists with composition (objects of interest should intersect with the lines rather than appearing within the boxes of the grid)
8. Stabilisation – avoiding camera shake.
There is a built-in stabiliser that is always active to minimise blur caused by camera shake.
9. Getting to ‘Camera’ when the iPhone is NOT asleep
The quickest way to get to the camera when the iPhone is not asleep is using a variation of the first tip.
Simply press the sleep/wake button twice and then slide the camera icon (this requires you to have the lock code active)
10. Zoom In
The iPhone camera has a little over 3x zoom Simply spread two fingers on screen to activate (unfortunately this is a digital zoom and will reduce your capture resolution to less than 1 Megapixel at maximum zoom before extrapolating back up to a 3264×2448 file)