Why Does Phone Camera Zoom in on Video?

Have you ever wondered why your phone camera zooms in when you start recording a video? It can be frustrating when you are trying to capture a wide shot, but your phone seems to have a mind of its own. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind this phenomenon and how you can overcome it.

Why does it happen?

When you switch from taking photos to recording videos on your phone, the camera lens behaves differently. Unlike taking photos, where the camera captures a single frame at a time, video recording involves capturing multiple frames per second. To achieve this, the camera needs to adjust its focus and zoom levels continuously.

1. Optical Zoom

Most phone cameras come with an optical zoom feature that allows you to zoom in and out while taking still photos. However, this feature is not available when recording videos as it requires physical movement of the camera lens. The lack of optical zoom means that your phone uses digital zoom instead.

2. Digital Zoom

Digital zoom is a software-based technique that enlarges a portion of an image or video to make it appear closer. When you start recording a video on your phone, the camera automatically switches from optical to digital zoom as it cannot move the lens physically while recording.

Tip: If you want to avoid digital zoom while recording videos on your phone, try stepping closer to your subject instead of relying on the zoom feature.

How can you overcome it?

If you want to capture wider shots without sacrificing quality or resolution, there are several things you can do:

1. Shoot in Landscape mode

When shooting videos on your phone, always use Landscape mode instead of Portrait mode. This will allow you to capture more area and reduce the need for digital zoom. Use Third-Party Apps

There are several third-party camera apps available that allow you to control the zoom and focus manually while recording videos. These apps provide more control over your phone’s camera settings, giving you the freedom to capture videos without any unwanted zoom.

3. Invest in a smartphone with Optical Zoom

If you are serious about capturing high-quality videos on your phone, consider investing in a smartphone with an optical zoom lens. These phones come with multiple lenses that allow you to zoom in and out while recording videos without compromising quality or resolution.


Now that you know why your phone camera zooms in while recording videos, it’s time to put this knowledge into practice. By following the tips mentioned above, you can capture better quality videos without any unwanted zooming or loss of resolution. Whether you’re shooting a family vacation or a professional project, these techniques will help you get the most out of your phone’s camera.