How To Use iOS 17 Live Text for Video: A Complete Guide

iOS 17 brings an exciting new feature called use iOS 17 Live Text for video that lets you interact with text directly within videos. With use iOS 17 Live Text, for video you can copy, translate, lookup, and take many other actions on text detected in video – making it easy to capture important information on the go.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about using use iOS 17 Live Text for video including

  • An Overview of Live Text for Video
  • How to Enable Live Text on iOS 17
  • Using Live Text in the Photos App
  • Copying, Translating, and Looking Up Video Text
  • Live Text Compatibility and Limitations
  • Live Text Tips and Tricks
  • Frequently Asked Questions

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An Overview of Live Text for Video

Live Text uses on-device intelligence to recognize text within photos and videos. It works directly on your device – no internet connection required. This allows you to quickly interact with text without needing to manually type it out.

Once Live Text is enabled, it will automatically detect text when you open compatible photos and videos in the Photos app. All you need to do is tap and hold on the text to bring up various interaction options like copy, translate, lookup and more.

This makes Live Text for video incredibly convenient for extracting useful information from videos. For example, you can quickly copy down phone numbers, addresses, ingredients from recipes, WiFi passwords, and much more. The computer vision behind Live Text makes this possible without any manual effort.

Overall, Live Text takes text interaction in videos to the next level. Text no longer needs to be just passive – you can actually use it right from the video itself.

How to Enable Live Text on iOS 17

Enabling Live Text on iOS 17 only takes a few quick steps:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Go to General > Language & Region.
  3. Make sure Live Text is turned on by checking that the switch is green. If not, tap on the Live Text switch to enable it.
  4. Turn on Live Text for all languages you want to use it for. English should be on by default.

And that’s it! Live Text is now enabled and ready to use across your device, including the Photos app for video.

A couple things to note:

  • Live Text is only available on iOS devices with A12 Bionic chip or later. This includes iPhone XS and newer.
  • Live Text may not be available in all regions or languages. The language must be downloaded to your device.
  • You can toggle Live Text on or off at any time in Settings. Turning it off can help conserve battery life.

Once enabled, Live Text seamlessly works its magic in the background. Try it out on photos and videos in your Photos app!

Using Live Text in the Photos App

The Photos app on iOS 17 is one of the most powerful ways to use Live Text for video. Here’s how it works:

  1. Open the Photos app and find a video that contains legible text. Live Text will automatically detect and recognize text in videos as you view them.
  2. Tap on the video to pause it. You can scroll back and forth in the video timeline to find the text you want to interact with.
  3. Touch and hold on the text in the video. iOS will detect the text region and you’ll see grab points appear around the selected text.
  4. Adjust the grab points to select the exact text string or block of text you want.
  5. Take your desired action on the text: copy, translate, lookup, share, etc. Options will appear in a menu above the selection.
  6. The text will instantly be acted upon without you needing to manually type anything!

The ability to simply touch, hold, and take action on video text makes Apple’s Live Text incredibly intuitive. It removes the tedious steps of pausing videos, manually typing out text, copy-pasting, and more.

As you use Live Text in Photos, remember that accuracy depends on factors like video resolution, image quality, and the size/style of text. But it works remarkably well, especially on clear text.

Copying, Translating, and Looking Up Video Text

Let’s explore the various actions you can take on Live Text selections in more detail:

Copy Text

This instantly copies the selected video text to your clipboard, allowing you to paste it anywhere. This is great for quickly capturing things like phone numbers, addresses, quotes, recipes, and more from videos.

To copy, select the text and tap “Copy” from the menu. Then paste the text into Notes, Messages, email, or any app that supports pasting text.

Translate Text

Translate lets you instantly convert the selected text into another language of your choice. This makes it easy to quickly translate foreign languages spotted in videos.

Simply select the text, tap “Translate”, and then choose the language you want to translate to. The translated text will appear in place of the original selection. You can then copy the translated text if needed.

Look Up Text

Look Up lets you quickly get more context on selected text by looking it up online or in the dictionary.

For example, you can lookup a word definition, search for text on the web, find contact info for a business name, and more. Just select the text, tap “Look Up”, and choose where to lookup – Dictionary, Contacts, web links, etc.

Share Text

You can also share Live Text selections directly from video to any app that accepts text input.

Select the text in video, tap the Share button, and choose where you want it shared – like Notes, Reminders, Messages, Mail, third-party apps, etc. The selected text will be inserted into the app.

Live Text Compatibility and Limitations

While Live Text is very capable, it’s important to be aware of the platform limitations and text compatibility:

  • Requires A12 Bionic chip or later: Live Text only works on iPhone models XS and later. Earlier iPhone models do not have the neural engine capabilities needed for Live Text. The A12 chip brought this on-device intelligence to iOS.
  • Requires iOS 17: The Live Text feature first launched with iOS 17, so you need to be running this OS version or later. Updating to the latest iOS version enables all new features like Live Text.
  • Language availability: Live Text may only support certain languages and regions depending on your iOS language settings. Ensure your desired language is downloaded and enabled.
  • Video resolution: Higher resolution video provides better Live Text accuracy. Text detection works best on clear HD or 4K videos. Lower quality video can impact text recognition abilities.
  • Text size and style: Small, blurry, stylistic or handwritten text is harder for Live Text to recognize. Clear, in-focus printed text works best.
  • Internet connection: Live Text functions entirely offline using on-device intelligence. But look-ups may require internet access to fetch additional information about selected text.

Within these constraints, Live Text for video works very reliably, especially for readable printed text. But accuracy varies for challenging text in lower quality video.

Tips and Tricks for Using Live Text in Video

Here are some handy tips to use Live Text like a pro when interacting with text in videos:

  • Play around with the grab points to isolate the exact text you want from a block of video text.
  • Try Look Up on text snippets like business names, books, songs etc. to quickly get more info.
  • Use the Share option to send video text excerpts to your notes, reminders, social media, or other apps.
  • If Live Text isn’t perfect on the first try, retry your selection or adjust the grab points for better recognition.
  • Turn on Live Text for all your commonly used languages so it works across regions and videos.
  • You can use Live Text for video screenshots too! Pause video, take a screenshot, then use Live Text in Photos.
  • Having trouble getting Live Text to recognize text? Try improving contrast or zooming in for a clearer view.
  • For long text like articles, use line-by-line selection to copy the full text in sections.
  • If the video text is very small, consider using magnifier mode for easier selection.

With some practice, you’ll be able to quickly grab, copy, share or lookup text from videos using Live Text in no time. Get creative with it!

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to some common questions about using Live Text for video:

How does Live Text work on videos?

Live Text uses on-device machine learning to detect text regions and recognize characters within videos, without requiring an internet connection. This enables you to interact directly with video text.

What are the system requirements for Live Text?

You need an iPhone XS or later running iOS 15 or later. Live Text requires the Apple neural engine, only available on A12 chip and above.

Can Live Text detect handwritten text?

No, Live Text works best on recognizing machine printed text. Handwritten and stylistic text is more challenging for the computer vision algorithms.

Is my region supported for Live Text video?

Live Text support depends on your iOS language settings. Ensure your desired language is downloaded and enabled under Language & Region settings.

How do I copy text from a YouTube or Instagram video?

Live Text only works in the native Photos app for now. But you can take a screenshot of the video and then use Live Text on the screenshot in Photos.

What languages are supported by Live Text?

Live Text supports recognition for many languages including English, Chinese, Spanish, French, Italian, German, Portuguese, etc. Support varies by region.

Can I use Live Text on older photos and videos?

Yes, Live Text works on both old and new photos/videos in your Photos library, as long as you are on a supported iPhone model with iOS 17+.

Why can’t I interact with text in some videos?

Small, blurry, or stylistic text is harder for Live Text to recognize. Make sure the video text is clear and in focus for best results.


iOS 17’s Live Text for video opens up powerful new ways to interact with text directly within videos. Simply long press on text in the Photos app while playing videos to copy, translate, lookup, and take many other actions quickly and easily.

With this guide, you now know how to:

  • Enable Live Text systemwide or for specific languages
  • Use Live Text selection tools in the Photos video player
  • Copy, translate, lookup, and share text from video
  • Work around Live Text limitations on older devices and languages
  • Get the most value from Live Text with pro tips and tricks

So start putting Live Text to use on instructional videos, recipes, lectures, interviews, and any other videos with text you want to interact with! It removes tedious transcription and manual lookup work. Live Text makes life easier by turning text in videos from passive to actionable.

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