BBC Young Reporter: Top tips for filming on a smartphone

Advice for Young Reporters filming and editing videos on a smartphone.

In the past few years there have been a lot of changes to how journalists make and break news stories. Thanks to mobile technology most of us have a video camera in our pocket so you don't need hi-tech equipment to make good-quality videos. 


Film-makers are producing documentaries and feature films on smartphones, and you can do the same. You and your students can shoot and edit on a smartphone or tablet.


There are safeguarding issues in storing footage on a phone or tablet, so check your school policy before you start. You can use an old phone without a SIM card as a camera and connect it to your school wi-fi to export the video. You can also film on tablets and a range of other devices which have the features of a smartphone - except the ability to make a call!


Here are some top tips


  • use airplane mode - you don’t want to be interrupted by calls, messages or alerts
  • battery - start with a full battery and take a portable battery pack
  • storage - videos use a lot of space so make sure you have enough memory
  • focus - lock your focus in place by tapping lock your focus in place by tapping and holding on the screen where you want the focus to be
  • stability - use both hands, a selfie stick or a portable tripod
  • zoom - move closer, for better quality, rather than using the zoom
  • sound - move closer or use the smartphone headphones as a microphone
  • light - record in a location where there is as much light as possible
  • wipe your lens - clean your lens with a lint free cloth to avoid marks on your video



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