swalkner swalkner -4 years ago 85
iOS Question

iOS: what's the fastest, most performant way to make a screenshot programmatically?

in my iPad app, I'd like to make a screenshot of a UIView taking a big part of the screen. Unfortunately, the subviews are pretty deeply nested, so it takes to long to make the screenshot and animate a page curling afterwards.

Is there a faster way than the "usual" one?

[self.layer renderInContext:UIGraphicsGetCurrentContext()];
UIImage *resultingImage = UIGraphicsGetImageFromCurrentImageContext();

If possible, I'd like to avoid caching or restructuring my view.

Answer Source

I've found a better method that uses the snapshot API whenever possible.

I hope it helps.

class func screenshot() -> UIImage {
    var imageSize = CGSize.zero

    let orientation = UIApplication.shared.statusBarOrientation
    if UIInterfaceOrientationIsPortrait(orientation) {
        imageSize = UIScreen.main.bounds.size
    } else {
        imageSize = CGSize(width: UIScreen.main.bounds.size.height, height: UIScreen.main.bounds.size.width)

    UIGraphicsBeginImageContextWithOptions(imageSize, false, 0)
    for window in UIApplication.shared.windows {
        window.drawHierarchy(in: window.bounds, afterScreenUpdates: true)

    let image = UIGraphicsGetImageFromCurrentImageContext()
    return image!

Wanna know more about iOS 7 Snapshots?

Objective-C version:

+ (UIImage *)screenshot
    CGSize imageSize = CGSizeZero;

    UIInterfaceOrientation orientation = [UIApplication sharedApplication].statusBarOrientation;
    if (UIInterfaceOrientationIsPortrait(orientation)) {
        imageSize = [UIScreen mainScreen].bounds.size;
    } else {
        imageSize = CGSizeMake([UIScreen mainScreen].bounds.size.height, [UIScreen mainScreen].bounds.size.width);

    UIGraphicsBeginImageContextWithOptions(imageSize, NO, 0);
    CGContextRef context = UIGraphicsGetCurrentContext();
    for (UIWindow *window in [[UIApplication sharedApplication] windows]) {
        CGContextTranslateCTM(context, window.center.x, window.center.y);
        CGContextConcatCTM(context, window.transform);
        CGContextTranslateCTM(context, -window.bounds.size.width * window.layer.anchorPoint.x, -window.bounds.size.height * window.layer.anchorPoint.y);
        if (orientation == UIInterfaceOrientationLandscapeLeft) {
            CGContextRotateCTM(context, M_PI_2);
            CGContextTranslateCTM(context, 0, -imageSize.width);
        } else if (orientation == UIInterfaceOrientationLandscapeRight) {
            CGContextRotateCTM(context, -M_PI_2);
            CGContextTranslateCTM(context, -imageSize.height, 0);
        } else if (orientation == UIInterfaceOrientationPortraitUpsideDown) {
            CGContextRotateCTM(context, M_PI);
            CGContextTranslateCTM(context, -imageSize.width, -imageSize.height);
        if ([window respondsToSelector:@selector(drawViewHierarchyInRect:afterScreenUpdates:)]) {
            [window drawViewHierarchyInRect:window.bounds afterScreenUpdates:YES];
        } else {
            [window.layer renderInContext:context];

    UIImage *image = UIGraphicsGetImageFromCurrentImageContext();
    return image;
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