Android 4.4 KitKat allows developers to do direct screen recordings of their device, allowing you to easily make how-to videos for your application, or to record device issues / bugs. In order to record your device, you need to install the Android SDK on your computer and download the latest updates.
I won’t go through this process as it’s covered in the Android Documentation.
Then, connect your device to your computer and run ADB (see example below, line #2). From the ADB shell, you can run a command to record your screen for a set amount of duration or using a specific bitrate. I’ve included a few examples below:
You can an example of a screen recording on my Google+ page or below, recorded in full HD using the above methods. Remember to watch it in 1080p HD.
You can also enable “Show touches” from the [Developer options] menu in [Settings] so that your touches on the screen come through in the video you record. See the below view for an example:
To clarify the process of running the process above, here are the summarised steps:
- Install the Android SDK if it hasn’t been already.
- Open up Terminal (Mac) or Command Prompt / MS DOS (Windows)
- Navigate to where the Android SDK was installed (use
cdon Terminal or
diron Command Prompt / MS DOS)
cd /Developers/android-sdk-macosx/on Mac or:
dir c:\android-sdkon MS DOS
- ADB is located in a folder called
platform-tools. Move into that directory using the
- Run the ADB shell by entering
./adb shellinto Terminal / MS DOS
- If a device is correctly connected, ADB should enter the shell correctly. Otherwise you’ll see a “Device not connected” error.
- Enter a
screenrecordcommand from above to start a screen recording of your device.
screenrecord --verbose --time-limit 10 /sdcard/screen.mp4as shown in the video
The video below demonstrates steps 2-5:
There is an easier way to enable screen recording on Android 10, as it’s now been built into the UI. However, you still need the Android SDK to enable it. You can run the below command line to enable the screen recording UI.
adb shell settings put global settings_screenrecord_long_press true
The above option will enable the “Screenshot” button from the power menu (down down the power button to see the button). If you press and hold the “Screenshot” button, you will see a new screen recording menu (see below):