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iPhone Live Photo: Everything You Need to Know!

by Kelly B.

iPhone Camera, iPhone Live Photo, Live Photo iPhone 6

iPhone Live Photos Full Overview

Apple introduced the Live Photos feature in 2015. The feature was first included in the models from the iPhone 6S series lineup. Live Photos was a flagship feature for the 6S. When you take a picture using your 6S it will be stored as a still image on your device, however, when you activate the Live Photo feature, the same still image will include a few seconds of audio and motion.


You can only use the Live Photos feature if you are:
  • Using an iPhone 6S or a model launched after it.
  • Using iOS 9 or an advanced version.

How the iPhone Live Photo feature works

Live Photos use a background feature to function. Whenever you open your iPhone’s camera app, it starts taking pictures automatically. Later the system deletes the pics that are not needed. When you enable the Live Photos feature, your device not just takes photos but also retains them in the background.
The feature saves photos before and after they were taken and combined them to create an animation that runs for 1.5 seconds. The feature also saves audio from the 1.5 seconds. Your device will delete any footage that is captured after 1.5 seconds.
iPhone Live Photo

When to use iPhone Live Photo

The Live Photos feature can be used to capture any scene that would come alive if the sound is added to it. Typical examples include birds singing or waves crashing on the shore. The feature can also help you relive fun moments before and after taking a pic.

How to use the iPhone Live Photo

To take a smart photo:
  • Open your iPhone’s camera app.
  • To enable the feature, tap on the Live Photo icon(three concentric circles) located at the top center of your screen.
  • Click snaps

How to view your live photos

Viewing your live photo is where the fun begins. Watching a static image come to life can be a magical experience. To view live photos on your device:
  • Open the photos app on your phone.
  • Choose the live photo you want to view.
  • Once the pic is displayed on the screen, press it hard.
Note: If you have already taken a pic using your app, you just need to tap on the photo icon, and you are good to skip the first two steps.
iPhone camera

How to locate the feature on your app

New devices include a special section for Live Photos. However, if you are using an older model, you will have to locate it on your app. To find the feature on your app:
  • Open the photo app.
  • Go to Albums
  • Tap on Media Types and select Live Photos.

How to disable the feature 

Disabling the feature is not that simple. Whenever you launch your camera app, your phone will automatically enable the feature. If you don't want this to happen to follow these steps:
  • Select Settings
  • Tap Camera
  • Chose Preserve Setting
  • Select the Live Photo Folder slider and move it to off.
  • Go to the Camera app and select the Live Photo icon. Doing this will disable the feature.
Live Photo iPhone 6

How to turn a Live Photo into a regular pic

You cannot turn a static photo into a live one. However, the vice versa is possible. Follow the below steps to turn a live pic into a normal one:
  • Go to the Photos app
  • Select the Live Photo you want to turn into a still image.
  • Choose Edit
  • Disable the Live Photo icon by tapping on it.
  • Select Done

Space consumed

Unlike videos that eat up a lot of space, Live Photos on average consume twice the amount of space used by still images.

Different Uses

Once you have to take a Live Photo, you can:
  • Share it with friends on social media or via email or text message.
  • Set your favorite Live Photo as your wallpaper.

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