Can you use both iPhone cameras at the same time?

Can you use both iPhone cameras at the same time?

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iPhone taking photo of deep blue skies and mountains.
Can you use two iPhone cameras simultaneously?

You have two or more cameras on your iPhone—the rear and the front. Don’t you wish you could use them at the same time? It would’ve been awesome to film that good baseball game and your reaction, right? Also, imagine all the fun content you can produce if you could’ve used both cameras at the same time. Now, is it possible to use both iPhone cameras?

Yes, you can now use both iPhone cameras at the same time—provided that you own the 2018 iPad Pro or iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR. You also have to update to iOS 13, so you can use both cameras at the same time to produce a single output. 

Apple iPhone XS, 64GB, Space Gray - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Black - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS, 64GB, Space Gray - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Black - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS, 64GB, Space Gray - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS, 64GB, Space Gray - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Black - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Black - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
two iPhones, gray and black.
It’s now possible to use two iPhone cameras at the same time.

Unfortunately, if your device isn’t any of those we mentioned, and even if you update to iOS 13, you can’t use both cameras simultaneously. Once you start recording a video on your rear camera, you have to stop and save your video clip, so you can use the front camera. 

The same goes for capturing photos—you can’t use both cameras to capture two different photos at the same time. Now, if you want side-by-side photos or videos, you can create one in post-production using third-party apps. 

In this article, you will find out if you can use both iPhone cameras at the same time. 

Multi-cam support: Capture and record using two iPhone cameras

If you own the latest iPad Pro, or any of the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, or iPhone XR, then lucky you! You can now film yourself and any subject at the same time using the new multi-camera support. All you have to do is just update to iOS 13. After that, you can already use two cameras simultaneously. 

Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - For AT&T (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Red - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - For AT&T (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Red - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - For AT&T (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XS Max, 64GB, Gold - For AT&T (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Red - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)
Apple iPhone XR, 64GB, Red - Fully Unlocked (Renewed)

What is the multi-cam support on iPhone?

iPhone camera taking photo of morning sky and tree with red leaves.
iOS 13 brings you the multi-cam API.

The multi-cam support or the multi-cam Application Programming Interface (API) is a feature of the iOS 13. It allows any user to capture photos or record videos at once using the rear camera and front camera. 

The multi-cam support can also let you control the depth and portrait effects on both cameras at the same time, depending on your device. As for the sound, you can also configure the multiple microphones on your iPhone or iPad Pro. With this feature, you can produce a single output at once—a photo or a movie—from two cameras. 

Related: How to fix an iPhone camera that keeps freezing

When did Apple introduce the new feature?

At the WWDC Session last September 2019, Apple introduced the multi-cam support in their Filmic Pro demo. The FiLMic Pro app is a third-party smartphone camera app that has features you don’t normally find in the pre-installed camera apps. 

In the event, they demonstrated how they used the FiLMic Pro app to record two different videos in one recording session. However, FiLMic Pro is still launching the multi-camera feature on their app later this year.

The limitation of using Apple’s multi-cam support

blonde girl taking a selfie with plant.
You can only use certain camera combinations at once.

You may use two cameras at the same time using the multi-cam support; however, depending on your device, you can only use a combination of two cameras at a time. For example, if you own an iPhone XS, you can only use the rear Wide camera and the front camera to take photos or record videos. You can also use its other cameras, such as the Telephoto camera and the Front TrueDepth, to produce an output. However, you can’t use three cameras at the same time.

Related: The Best iPhone Camera Settings for Selfies (And Why)

Third-party apps for creating side-by-side photos & videos

1. Vidstitch Frames for Instagram 

vidstitch app.
Vidstitch Frames for Instragram | Photo

Developer: Fresh Squeezed Apps 
Required iOS version: 9 or later

If you only use the iPhone or the iPad to record videos or capture photos, then this is the app for you. Vidstitch is a free app that offers multiple frames and collage layouts, which you can use to combine more than one video or photo. Their paid Pro version allows you to use more than a hundred frames, combine up to 4 video clips, and add your own soundtrack. 

2. Perfect Video Editor, Collage

Perfect video editor app.
Perfect Video Editor | Photo

Developer: yinfeng tang
Required iOS version: 10 or later

Perfect Video Editor has a simple interface but has powerful features. You can combine photos into a collage and create side-by-side videos with their premium version. You can also add music, SFX, animated text, and many more. You can even edit 1920x1080HD videos on this app. 

3. Magisto Video Editor & Movie Maker

Magisto video editor app.
Magisto Video Editor & Movie Maker

Developer: Vimeo, Inc.
Required iOS version: 11.0 or later.

Magisto is another popular, easy-to-use app for anyone who wants to edit videos. Their AI-assisted video editor can choose text, themes, and effects. If you don’t have any videos, they can also provide royalty-free photos. You can also use their commercially-licensed music for your videos. 

More questions about iPhone’s multi-camera era

The past few years have been the iPhone’s multi-camera era. And with the three cameras and multi-camera API, this era won’t seem to go anywhere. Still can’t get enough of the fact that you can now use both cameras at the same time? Here are more juicy bits of information about the iPhone’s multiple cameras. 

What are the differences between iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro’s cameras? 

white iPhone 11 and space gray iPhone 11 Pro Max.

The iPhone 11 has a dual-camera system, the 12-megapixel Ultra-Wide camera and Wide camera. The iPhone 11 Pro has the same two 12-megapixel cameras, but Apple added a telephoto lens to it. The iPhone 11 also has a 5x digital zoom, while the iPhone 11 Pro has a 10x digital zoom. As for the optical image stabilisation (OIS), both Pro models have dual OIS, while the iPhone 11 has standard OIS.

Related: Can you make your iPhone camera NOT flip?

Why do the iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max have three cameras?

With the iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max, Apple seems to have targeted professional photographers. Having their three cameras, it’s now easier for advanced users to capture photos and record videos that are of high-quality. The Ultra Wide, Wide, and Telephoto cameras can give users more perspectives, more scenes and subjects, improved portrait modes, and better pictures shot in the dark. 

Is the iPhone 11 Pro Max worth the price?

iPhone 11 Pro Max in space grey.

If you’re a professional photographer or a serious content creator, then the iPhone 11 Pro Max is definitely worth the price. The three cameras alone are a guarantee of high-quality content producing at your fingertips. Moreover, the iPhone Pro Max has received a lot of praise for its long battery life. Some even said it’s the most advanced iPhone yet. So, when you look at it from a content creator’s perspective, then the hefty price is worth it.

Conclusion 

Side-by-side photos and videos are indeed interesting formats. They give your audience a deeper, richer perspective of your content. If you own any of those devices we mentioned above, then good for you. You can now use multi-cam support. However, don’t lose hope yet if you own an older Apple device. You can just use those third-party apps we listed here, so you can create side-by-side videos and photos easily!

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