I am using my iPhone 7 Plus for taking work photos and I am finding the timer option unsuitable and using wired earphones isn’t practical. So I’ve been experimenting with Bluetooth headphones to try taking photos with the volume controls, but can’t get this to work.

I did search via Google but all the results basically say that since the iPhone 5 people can use the volume controls of any wired and bluetooth earphones to take photos with the camera.

What am I doing wrong? I have tried 2 bluetooth headphones and 1 pair of bluetooth earphones and none of them work.

2 Answers 2


You can indeed use Bluetooth headphones for taking photos with the built-in iOS Camera app. In fact, it doesn’t even have to be headphones, so long as the device has volume controls.

However, here’s the catch:- The volume controls of the Bluetooth device have to control the iPhone’s built-in volume (i.e. they control the volume levels of their own speakers via the iPhone's built-in volume control rather than directly changing the volume of the speakers within the earphones/headphones). Unfortunately, many of them do not do this, and that's why any Bluetooth keyboard with volume controls will work as they don't have their own speakers, so can only control the volume at the iPhone end.

My recommendation is to use a dedicated remote for this purpose, such as the HISY Bluetooth Camera Remote. This device is designed specifically for this purpose and can be used for both taking photos and videos, and from a distance of up to about 27 metres (90 feet).

Note: I have no affiliation whatsoever with this product.

  • 1
    If there are two iOS devices available then "there's an app for that". I've used old phone. I didn't realize Bluetooth volume control worked, but just successfully tested that.
    – Tyson
    Jul 22, 2017 at 12:35
  • @Tyson Thanks for sharing! :) For the benefit of others, can you clarify exactly what you did?
    – Monomeeth
    Jul 22, 2017 at 22:38
  • 2
    The specific app I have used is named "remote shutter", that search in the App Store tho yields many similar apps. It must be installed on both devices
    – Tyson
    Jul 22, 2017 at 23:36

Since the title of the question is about taking photos remotely, rather than specifically about Bluetooth headphones, I’ll point out that this is also possible using an WATCH.

The Camera app that ships with watchOS lets you do a lot more than activate the shutter button remotely. It provides a viewfinder for the iPhone’s camera, so you can check how your final photo will look before taking the shot, and it also lets you switch between different modes, toggle Live Photo and HDR, and set a timer.

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