Screenshots on unrooted Android

2010.12.01 23:26 by Leo Antunes - 12 Comments

A few weeks ago I noticed an image on my Froyo phone which appeared to be a screenshot. This came as a surprise, since I don’t have any screenshot applications installed and am generally economic when it comes to the amount of fluff on my phone. I did a few searches and there doesn’t seem to be any visible mention of this feature out there, only mentions of how to do it with the SDK or with specific apps.

Since today I finally managed to discover how to actually do it again (holding the Back button and pressing Home), I took these screenshots using different launchers to be sure it wasn’t some feature of ADW.Laucher.

I still haven’t beat my laziness to actually reset to factory settings and make sure it’s not some other random app (which would be a bit unsettling, actually) and it could also be a Samsung specific feature, implemented as one of those pesky unremovable apps.

Can anybody out there confirm this (not particularly useful) feature? Did I miss it being published somewhere?

[UPDATE]: I found a couple of “hidden” apps that probably have something to do with this (through Settings→Applications→Manage applications→All).

The first one is an obvious suspect, but since it isn’t named after Samsung (which admittedly doesn’t mean much) I figured it might be activated by the second one, which in my overly-creative and not-really-investigative mind could be a sort of hotkey-daemon. [UPDATE 2: well, that’s ignoring the obvious fact that SEC stands for “Samsung Electronics Corporation”. D’oh!]
I don’t think the feature is important or interesting enough for me to investigate much further, but still I thought I might leave some pointers if people want to get this on their ROMs.

  1. I’m pretty sure it’s an added feature by Samsung (though it would be nice if it was a Froyo feature). The 2.2 rom I’m running seems to have removed it, unfortunately. Would be handy.

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    Could you check for any of the apps mentioned in the update above? Would be nice if we could dissect this and get it into other ROMs.

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  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Planet Debian, Tech Drops, Debian Feeds, Devilicus, Rene Nachtnebel ✔ and others. Rene Nachtnebel ✔ said: #Open-Source: Leo 'costela' Antunes: Screenshots on unrooted Android http://dlvr.it/9YDKK […]

  3. Still work on rooted Froyo. Tested on SGS as well

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  4. This is actually a feature only on Samsung Galaxy S (and possibly on the tab as well) but is a bit weird in how it is implemented..Won’t any of the app, of which you want to take screenshot, exit when you hold back button?

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    Not really, you have to release the back button for it to actually work as “back”. If between pressing and releasing you press Home, it just does its screenshotty magic.

    It might really be an SGS-only feature, but as posted in the update above, the biggest suspect isn’t really marked as a Samsung app. Not sure if this means anything though…

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  5. First is actually named after Samsung, since SEC == Samsung Electronics Corporation ;)

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    Shit, you’re obviously right. That was silly.

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  6. Thank you. Was looking for this feature on my SGS. Works on my Froyo

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  7. i have an LG esteem with metro , how can i do it ?

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  8. thos doesnt work on my samsung admire -_-

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  9. will it appear in your pictures because i felt the vibrate shortly after i pressed in between the two buttons?

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