Project: Cross Device Screenshots with a Smartphone Camera

Applications that allows creating screenshots of a computer screen by photographing it with a smartphone.

Status: ongoing

Runtime: 2020 -

Participants: Alexander Hartmann, Andreas Schmid

Keywords: cross device communication, interaction technique


Even though all broadly used desktop operating systems ship with dedicated tools for creating screenshots, instead a smartphone camera is often times used to capture the contents of a computer screen.

There are several reasons for using a smartphone camera instead of taking screenshots:

  • Novice users might not know how to use screenshot tools.
  • Taking a screenshot saves the image on the PC. If the user wants to share the image with an instant messenger on his smartphone, taking a photograph is faster than transferring the image from PC to smartphone.
  • People are used to taking photographs of all kinds of things with their smartphones, therefore this is a rather natural interaction. Why should the form of interaction be different for the contents of screens?

These advantages outweigh the fact that photographs of screens are commonly very low in quality because of reflections, distortions and moiré patterns.

Moiré patterns on a photograph of a computer screen.


Work in progress!


Work in progress!


Work in progress!


Work in progress!

Supplementary Material

Work in progress!