I love having the luxury of video capture on my iPhone 3GS, because it’s available to me anytime I need it. The only problem is, it’s either video or photo capture, so I’m potentially out of luck if I captured one and decidedly would have rather had the other. Yeah, I kind of like having my cake and eating it all in a single sitting too.
The good news — in this particular case at least — is that if you capture the event in video, you have a pretty good chance of getting decent still photos out of it when you’re through.
While this tip is aimed at iPhone 3GS users who can shoot their own video, it’s possible to use on any model when viewing video. The beauty of editing 3GS video that you’ve shot, is the frame scrubber that is made available for editing purposes. That feature just makes it a lot easier to pinpoint the image that you want to pull from the video content. (This becomes important when one frame is blurry, and the next is not.)
Once you’ve found the frame that you want to make into a photo in your iPhone album, we just need to capture it. For the best results, make sure the control bezels are hidden from the screen. Usually tapping the screen once will cause them to slide out of view. Then, to perform the screen capture, press and hold the Home button. While holding the Home button, click the Sleep button on top of the phone. You’ve now saved that movie frame to your photo library as a stand-alone picture file.
The quality of your resulting photo depends completely on the video that was captured first. If there are slow movements that limit or eliminate blur, that will give the best outcome to this process. It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s better than no photos from an event at all!