How to Use Picture in Picture on the iPhone

This article will tell you what Picture in Picture is and how to use Picture in Picture on an iPhone. If you use an iPad, Picture in Picture is something you are likely familiar with, but iPhone users may not be familiar with this feature yet. Picture in Picture allows you to watch videos on your iPhone while completing other tasks at the same time. Here’s how it works:

Related: How to Use Picture in Picture on Your iPad

How to Open & Close Picture in Picture in Videos

We already know how to use another app while on a phone call on your iPhone, but Picture in Picture brings multitasking to the next level.

  1. To activate Picture in Picture, just play a video (either in a video app or from Safari).
  2. Tap the Picture in Picture icon on your video (it looks like two overlapping rectangles). You should now see a smaller version of your video on the screen.
  3. To exit Picture in Picture mode, tap the same icon again or tap the X icon.
  4. You can also resize your Picture in Picture video by double tapping the window to rotate between the small, medium, and large sizes.

How to Use Picture in Picture with FaceTime

Previously, if you tried to complete other tasks during a FaceTime call, then the video would be paused for the person on the other end of your call. Now you can use Picture in Picture to continue your video call while doing other things on your phone.

  1. Using Picture in Picture with FaceTime is pretty simple—all you have to do is swipe out of FaceTime and the FaceTime window will shrink.
  2. To adjust the size of the FaceTime window, just double tap it to move between the small, medium, and large sizes.
  3. Or simply tap the FaceTime window once to go back to full screen. Easy!

How to Move the Picture in Picture Window Off Screen

For times when you need to be able to view your entire phone screen, you can move your Picture in Picture window off screen temporarily. To do this:

  1. Drag the window to the right or left edge of your iPhone’s display.
  2. You’ll still hear the audio from your video, but you won’t see the video.
  3. Tap the little arrow that appears at the edge of the display when you are ready to return the window.

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Author Details

Amy Spitzfaden–Both's picture

Author Details

Amy Spitzfaden–Both

Amy Spitzfaden Both is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life, an award-winning novelist, and an iPhone enthusiast. Over the past decade, her work in the publishing industry has included live coverage of industry events including the Yale Publishing Course and Magazine Innovation’s ACT 9 Experience, providing editing services for several start-up publishing houses, and acting as newsstand consultant for magazines such as The Old Farmer’s Almanac and The New York Review of Books. She graduated from M.I.U. with a Bachelor’s in Literature and Writing, and has gone on to publish two novels and two short stories. Her debut novel Untold won the 2014 Chelson Award for Fiction.
Writing everything from book reviews to skincare tips, Amy discovered a passion for bringing exciting and useful information to even the most casual researcher. The mix of usability and endless possibilities is what drew her to Apple products originally, and the more she learns, the more she loves.
Amy lives in New Hampshire with her husband and daughter. When she’s not writing or glued to her iPhone, she enjoys hiking, traveling, and creating her own tea blends.