Apple used to make it very difficult to record the screen on iOS devices. This process got a bit easier with OS X Yosemite and iOS 8 and the introduction of recording on your computer through QuickTime Player. Before that, this task wasn’t possible without turning to AirPlay recording software like X-Mirage or Reflector on your computer, which was not ideal.

In the soon to be released iOS 11, you can record the screen without having to rely on AirPlay to a computer or on QuickTime Player recording and a wired connection.

Learn how to use this new feature to capture your iOS screen on an iPhone or iPad. Two possible ways this feature could be useful is for developers who need to document software bugs, or for someone who wants to provide another user with a walk-through of how to do something on their iOS device.

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How to enable the screen recording feature in iOS 11

You can access this new feature within the Control Center panel by swiping up from the bottom of the screen on iOS devices. If you try to swipe up, you’ll be disappointed because the screen recording feature isn’t there–it needs to be enabled first by performing the following steps.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Navigate to Control Center | Customize Controls.
  3. Tap the + button beside the Screen Recording option to add it to the Include section of the list and re-order the Screen Recording button to change its ordering in Control Center (Figure A).

Figure A

Now that this feature is included in the Control Center, swiping up from the bottom of your iOS device screen will present you with a new record button; this is how you will enable and change the settings for recording. Let’s take a look at how to start a recording.

Tip: This screen recording functionality will record everything that is on your device’s screen, including notifications; you may want to enable Airplane mode before starting the recording to minimize these distractions.

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How to record the screen of an iPhone or iPad

To start a recording, open Control Center by swiping up from the bottom of your iOS device–you’ll notice the recording button that was enabled in the previous steps. To start a new recording, tap the recording button. When you navigate away from the Control Center, you’ll notice a blue recording bar at the top of the screen, and it will be visible for the duration of the screen recording process.

The screen recording doesn’t include system sounds in the recording, but you can include recorded audio from the device’s microphone. To enable this, tap and hold on the record button and enable the Microphone Audio option when it’s shown at the bottom of the screen (Figure B).

Figure B

When you wish to end the recording, tapping on the blue bar will present a dialog asking if you’d like to stop the recording (Figure C); you can also stop the recording by re-entering Control Center and tapping the record button again.

Figure C

When you tap Stop Recording, the video that was recorded can be found inside of the Photos app under the Videos album.

You can edit the clip as you normally would with any other video in the Photos app; and, because the recording will show you starting and stopping the recording, you’ll want to trim the first few seconds and the last few seconds of the video.