While iPhone, iPhone, and iPod touch users have happily been capturing screenshots on their devices since day one, Google Android has never had a native screenshot feature — until now.
The Samsung Galaxy Nexus smartphone is now shipping in the US, and GottaBeMobile’s KT Bradford notes that you can save a picture on the first Android 4.0 phone simply by holding down the power button at the same time as the volume-down button.
This is very similar to the way you take screenshots on an iOS device by holding the power and home buttons simultaneously. The difference is Android gives you a notification to let you know the screenshot has been saved after showing you a brief animation.
Up until now there were three ways to take a screenshot:
- Root your device and install a third party app from the Android Market.
- Install the Android SDK on your computer, connect your phone or tablet with a USB cable, and run a desktop utility.
- Buy one of a handful of phones that had built-in screenshot capabilities developed by the phone maker (rather than Google).
As a Nexus phone, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus includes only Google software and no third party add-ons. That means screenshots are finally baked into the stock version of Google Android and this feature should be available on most phones and tablets going forward.