How To: Take Scrolling Screenshots of Entire Webpages on Your iPhone or iPad

Take Scrolling Screenshots of Entire Webpages on Your iPhone or iPad

If you've never edited a screenshot on your iPhone or iPad, there's a chance you're missing out on one of the coolest features Safari has to offer: full-page screenshots.

Full-page screenshots are saved as PDFs instead of PNGs like regular screenshots. So if you were looking to save images of entire webpages to the Photos app, you'd have to use a PDF to PNG converter app or shortcut. It's also worth noting that you can only take full-page screenshots in Safari, so you won't be able to use Chrome, Firefox, or another third-party browser.

Apple's screenshot editor first appeared in iOS 11, but scrolling webpage screenshots came later in iOS 13 and iPadOS 13. However, older iOS versions did have ways to make PDFs of complete webpages; they were just hidden. For example, there was the "Create PDF" action in iOS 12, which was called "Markup as PDF" in iOS 11, and the "Print" tool that let you make PDFs in iOS 10.

While you can't save PDFs to Photos, you can save them to Files or share them with another app. The same is true for the older webpage-to-PDF actions, but using the newer screenshot utility is a more natural experience, where the Markup tools show up right away instead of being hidden behind another button.

Step 1: Take a Screenshot

On your iPhone or iPad, take a screenshot anywhere on a webpage in Safari. You can use the default method below for your device model or another option such as AssistiveTouch, Siri, Back Tap, Shortcuts, or Voice Control.

  • iPhones with Face ID: Press the Side and Volume Up buttons together
  • iPhones with Touch ID: Press the Side or Top button and Home buttons together
  • iPads: Press the Top button and either Volume button together

A thumbnail preview will appear in the bottom left; tap it before it disappears to open the screenshot editor. If you don't open the editor, the screenshot will only save what was visible on the screen when it was taken. To capture the whole webpage, you need to access the editor right after taking the screenshot.

Step 2: Choose the Full-Page Version

At the top of the screenshot editor, you'll see tabs for "Screen" and "Full Page." The former is the default screenshot, which shows what's on the screen when you took the screenshot. For a snapshot of the entire webpage, switch to the "Full Page" tab, which automatically stitches together the webpage from beginning to end.

Step 3: Find Where You Want to Crop

Depending on the webpage, you may want to crop any unnecessary sections out, like comments, further reading links, the site's footer, etc. On the right, you'll see the entire webpage as a long, tiny, probably unreadable preview with a highlighted section. That's the spot you're viewing in the big preview to its left. Tap and hold the highlighted part, then move it up or down to scroll through the page to see what you want to keep and delete.

Step 4: Trim the Screenshot Down

To edit the length of the screenshot, tap on the crop icon in the top toolbar and make adjustments as necessary. Unfortunately, you can't zoom in during cropping, so it's important to find the crop area beforehand, as seen in Step 3 above.

If you try to pinch to zoom in, the image in the crop zone may enlarge but not the crop tool itself, leaving you with vital areas of the image unseen. You can pinch to zoom the image out or tap "Reset" to try again.

After dragging the crop edge to where needed, the crop preview will resize to that specific crop a few seconds after letting go of the screen. That allows you to try again with a bigger image, and you can repeat that as many times as necessary until you're happy with what's in the crop zone.

Hit "Done" when finished.

Step 5: Preview and Make Adjustments if Needed

If it's a very long screenshot, you may want to preview the result after cropping it to make sure you've cut it exactly where you wanted. Use the highlighted area on the right to check the page. If adjustments are necessary, repeat Step 4 above.

Step 6: Use Markup (Optional)

When you're satisfied with your cropped area, you can use the Markup tool to write on the image, magnify parts, add shapes, draw on it, change the opacity, show the ruler, etc.

Step 7: Share or Save the Screenshot as a PDF

Unfortunately, due to the length of the screenshot and the file type, you cannot save it to Photos as a PNG file, but you can save it as a PDF to the Files app, AirDrop it, message it, or share it with another app.

Once you've edited the full-page screenshot, tap "Done" and choose "Save PDF to Files" from the action menu if you want to save the image to Files. You could also tap the share icon to open the Share Sheet, where you can save it to files or share it another way.

If you choose to save it to Files, tap on the name of the PDF up top next to the preview image to rename the document, if needed. Then, select the primary destination, such as On My iPhone, iCloud Drive, your server, or a third-party cloud service. Next, choose a directory within one of those options if desired, and hit "Save."

Step 8: View the PDF in Files

To view the full-page screenshot, open the Files app and locate the PDF just like any other PDF file. Tap on it to see it in its entirety. You can use the Markup tools via the top-right icon to draw on the PDF and the share icon to share it, copy it, print it, save it to Dropbox, etc.

Again, full-page screenshots only work in Safari, so third-party browsers such as Chrome and Firefox will not work, nor in-app browsers such as the one built into the Reddit app. Let's hope this changes in the future to work system-wide in apps like Messages, WhatsApp, Firefox, and more.

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Cover photo, screenshots, and GIFs by Justin Meyers/Gadget Hacks

1 Comment

Do you have any solution for the problem with long PDFs? If the webpage is too long they cut it. And I can't figure out a way to make the whole page aPDF. Then I loose alot of info and the point is gone. Don't know if you guys tested that before writing this page

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