How to use Burst Mode on the iPhone 5S

Apple's latest flagship iPhone, the 5S, includes some enhancements to the camera, including a new Burst Mode.

Jason Cipriani
Jason Cipriani
Jason Cipriani Contributing Writer, ZDNet
Jason Cipriani is based out of beautiful Colorado and has been covering mobile technology news and reviewing the latest gadgets for the last six years. His work can also be found on sister site CNET in the How To section, as well as across several more online publications.
Jason Cipriani
2 min read

Jason Cipriani/CNET

When Apple unveiled the iPhone 5S, one of the main feature sets shown off during the presentation was the camera improvements. Two of the new features stood out more than others, were slo-mo videos and a new Burst Mode.

Burst Mode will take photos at up to 10 frames per second on the 5S, so you don't miss the best shot. This comes in especially useful when taking a photo of a child, or an action shot and timing isn't easy.

To use Burst Mode on the iPhone 5S, you launch the Camera app and ensure that you're using either the Photo or the Square setting.

Next, frame your shot and then tap and hold on either the shutter release button on the screen, or the volume-up key on your iPhone.

You'll hear the familiar shutter sound, but instead of just one click, you'll hear a rapid series of them. You'll also find a count indicator on the screen next to the shutter button, going up faster than you can count. This count lets you know how many photos you've snapped in a quick burst.

Don't worry, though, the software in the iPhone 5S will group all of the photos from the same burst into one thumbnail. Doing so prevents any clutter in your Camera Roll, especially if you take a long burst of 50 or 60 photos.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

When viewing a set of burst photos, you'll notice a few extra pieces of information on the screen. The first is how you can identify a set of burst photos, complete with a count of photos in the bunch.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

The second is the Favorites text at the bottom. What happens after you take a burst of photos is iOS 7 automatically selects what it thinks is the best photo of the bunch and shows that as the main photo. When you tap on Choose Favorites, you're able to scroll through the photos in the set and select a different favorite, or even select multiple favorites. Doing so will copy your selections and paste them into your Camera Roll where you can then share, edit and do what you'd like with the photos.

Deselecting a favorite photo will remove it from your Camera Roll, without removing the copy stored in the original set of burst photos.

When using an older iOS device you may note you can also hold in the shutter button and it will snap a series of photos. While that behavior is similar to that of the iPhone 5S, it's not near as fast, and you'll also notice that all photos taken are placed in your Camera Roll, instead of being grouped as they are on the 5S.

What do you think of the new Burst Mode on the 5S? Is it something you have used, plan or using or will never use? Have you taken an amazing photo only made possible by Burst Mode? Feel free to share it with us below in the comments.