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Tip: Use the Volume Rocker to Snap Pictures With the New Camera App

Android Camera

As pointed out in our comments section by a few of our lovely readers, while using the new camera application that was ripped from the Google Play Edition devices (download available), you can use your phone’s volume rocker to take pictures. No more tapping on the screen to capture that perfect moment. 

While in the camera app, simply tap on either volume “up” or “down” and boom, snapshot.

Now lets see some sweet cat and dog pics.

Cheers Ryuuie!

  • Guest

    The details are well-explained and very concise.

  • Thanks for giving me the useful information. I think I need it. Thank you

  • rpcxtreme

    Is there a way to turn off the shutter sound on the new camera?

  • Tyler

    Well I’m glad that Google only took 2 years to figure out that not having a physical button to take pics was awkward at best.

  • ppero196

    Works great on S3 Mini. Also on new camera you cannot save photos to SD card

  • asad nabeel

    Will it run on nexus 7?

  • Bob

    My bionic has done this since JB. You just have to go into the camera settings to enable it.

  • Ryan Stewart

    Location based reminders and a shutter button in the same week. My phone just got 17% better

  • Wil Gibson

    I’m going to admit, a dedicated camera button is something I have missed since dropping my Samsung Focus for a Nexus 4 a month ago. It’s a little thing that makes a big difference after having it for so long then not. Now, I have a reason to download the apk.

  • Jesse Blacklock

    I don’t understand how this is cool, everything else is touch, including zoom, settings, etc so you cant touch to snap the picture?

    • stewie

      Yes, you still can, but now you also can hit one of the volume rockers …

      • Jesse Blacklock

        I don’t mean it’s impossible likes it’s not there , I mean they make everything touch friendly but ppl don’t want to touch the on screen button to take a picture just ironic

        • Ryan Stewart

          You typically arent actually in the act of taking the picture when messing with the settings, unlike the shutter button. I find the phone much easier to hold and the picture much easier to frame without having ot hold it in a way where I can have a finger free to touch the screen.

          You are already holding the phone by the edges so having the volume rocker work as a shutter button is a nice addition.

    • Trickie Tom

      I find it easier to hold and take a good looking picture when I dont have to tap the screen causing me to move my phone just slightly.. Also helps to take a pic while holding the phone in an odd angle, where trying to find the button on the screen is hard cuz you can’t really see the screen.. Ive used this option on my Bionic since Ive had it, seeing I came from an OG Droid that had a dedicated shutter button.

  • Drummer62

    You can do this on the stock camera on the S4. It is in the camera settings to use the volume key as either the zoom, snap photo key or record button for video.

  • coolsilver

    I love this on my S4

  • markgbe

    Are these devices running an android version greater than 4.2.2?

  • joejoe5709

    Finally!! What’s funny is I’m still so used to using the onscreen button and I fumble trying to use the volume button and accidentally take photos of my fingers.

    I love it though! Thank you Google! My only wish is that holding down one side of the rocker would adjust the zoom. Click the button quickly to take a photo or hold it for zoom is the idea there. But heck, I’m not complaining!

  • Tim Buchanan

    Why wasn’t this introduced years ago?

    • Malia Obama

      It was introduced. Then, like SD cards and removable batteries it was gone.

  • Chris Hollenbeck

    The volume adjust is used as a zoom feature for the Galaxy 3 camera (in case somebody didn’t know).

  • Adam Elghor

    anyone get the app working on the S3 with cyanogenmod

    • Jesse Blacklock

      makes mine freeze every time after i snap it ones

      • Khary Anderson

        Just like the original JB 4.2 camera on CM. They’re incompatible.

  • cornflahkes

    Good idea, though I don’t understand the hardware manufacturers distaste for the physical camera button (MS dictates camera buttons for WP, works nicely on my Lumia 928).

    • I liked it on my OG DROID. Always nice to have an extra button that can be assigned to other stuff too.

  • Brandon Golway

    It’s about damn time they did this!

  • Raven

    I prefer to use my volume rocker to zoom in and out in Camera ZOOM FX.

    • Why even zoom while taking a picture? Just take it as is, then crop it down later. More information = better.

      • bob

        Maybe they don’t want to.

        • just doesn’t make any sense. its digital zoom. pus this new pinch to zoom is really cool looking.

  • rutgersjaffo

    Oh thank God. It is just so very, very tiresome having to touch my screen to take a picture. Whew!

    • Ryan Stewart

      It was always awkward to hold while touching the screen and it was easy to bring up the menu instead. This is an awesome addition.

      • rutgersjaffo

        Yeah, that actually makes sense. Will give you that. And yet…I stand by my sarcasm. Although I have to ask…where does that leave one as far as zoom in and out is concerned?

        • Ryan Stewart

          No clue because I never used zoom. Since its just a digital zoom I always just captured the full res picture and cropped later. Zoom on these cameras is nothing more than a crop.

  • Ryuuie

    You’re welcome, Tim-o-tato! 😀

  • moelsen8

    wow, so simple yet so brilliant

  • Alex

    Couldn’t you just go into the options on your stock camera anyway and select the volume rocker to be either zoom or take picture? At least it’s been on the phones I have.

    • STOCK camera did not have this feature, until now.

  • TheRobotCow

    I miss having a dedicated camera button

    • michael arazan

      Cool thing that was on my Droid ! I miss too

  • T4rd

    This is a stock feature on Samsung/TW phones too.

  • The photo editor is also tweaked a little. I think there are new frames too.

  • sc0rch3d

    does anyone know why the camera lense is typically on the top middle of the phone? most of us try to line up pictures as if we’re looking “through” the phone (shocking concept, i know)

    • epps720

      Because they can’t put a camera lens through the phone’s battery

      • sc0rch3d

        yes, i get the engineering complications. i meant more like….why aren’t they designing the phone in better ways we would naturally use it?

        • CheeseMcGee

          What would you suggest?

          • sc0rch3d

            camera in the middle of the back of the phone with a dedicated button that can be programmed for other apps if desired (like take pictures when in cam app, but be a TORCH button when screen is off). or have a phone understand when it’s in my pocket so that i don’t have to worry about the screen being off (and vice versa to power on). or making a phone that you don’t have to worry switching radios on/off, they can be on all the time and understand when/when not to use them. i can name many others…

      • Ryan Stewart

        This, they tend to put the big battery pack at the bottom and most of the electronics and antenna around the top.

  • Alex

    Is there a way to disable the shutter sound when you take a picture? I have been using the Camera JB+ from the Play Store that gives this option.

    • Bigwavedave25

      Not in the camera or gallery app. This is usually a ROM implemented feature. I know CM and most CM based Roms have the option in Settings to disable the shutter sound. Stock-ish Roms usually do not have the option.

      • Flat_Stanley

        So is there now no way to turn the shutter volume off? Previously I could just turn the volume down (using the rocker) until media volume was off. Is that impossible now?

        • Robert Macri

          If you are rooted you just delete the associated sounds in /system/media/audio/ui – I’ve been doing it for years.

        • RxGadget

          after JB and above took away the ability to shut off shutter volume. This was due to “privacy concerns”. By making the camera shutter sound it gives a potential heds up to others in the area

    • BRIM

      I have an S3 and no shutter noise at all (I always keep my phone on vibrate)

  • BRIM

    I love the UI of this camera (installed on my stock S3).

    But can anyone tell me why I would use this as my main camera over my stock? I’m excited about Photosphere, finally, but they’re pointless if they’re limited to G+.

  • Daniel

    I’ve had this with the Motorola cameras, and is the single feature that helps me forgive the lack of good two-stage camera buttons on phones these days :-

  • Jack Hoffman

    Imagine doing that with the LG-G2’s volume buttons…

  • JimmyHACK

    Nice. This camera running fine in addition to stock camera on stock SGS4. Love using volume rocker on stock camera so I am happy google has this on their app now.

  • cjohn4043

    One of the features iOS implemented that I’ve wanted in Android.

    • bionics sac

      wait…are you saying that is something IOS DIDN’T STEAL FROM ANDROID???? you know you will get your throat slit in here for saying such a thing

      • Paul Hansen

        Android was using it for zoom for a long time. Some phones had dedicated camera buttons for a while but when those went away the volume was still zoom and tapping the screen was to take the img. The one thing I don’t like about this is (on the GS4 at least) the lens gets covered by my finger when i try to take an image this way unless I hold the phone daintily by the edges.

    • AustinM123

      However, Android had a dedicated camera button before iOS

  • Robert Macri