Self Timer


  1. A built-in camera function that delays the activation of the shutter for a preset amount of time, usually ranging from a couple of seconds to several minutes.
  2. An optional feature available in many cameras and photography apps that facilitates hands-free operation for capturing photographs or videos after a predetermined interval.


The Self Timer is a widely-used feature in the world of photography, offering users the flexibility to delay the shutter release for a set duration. This allows photographers to join group shots, position themselves, or simply eliminate camera shake that might occur when pressing the shutter button. While the self-timer has been a staple in traditional cameras, it has also become increasingly common in mobile photography.



  • The timer duration is usually adjustable, with common presets ranging from 2 to 10 seconds, and some models offer customization up to several minutes.

Visual and Audio Cues

  • Most self-timers provide visual and/or audio signals, such as blinking lights or beeping sounds, to indicate the remaining time before the shutter activates.

Multiple Shots

  • Some advanced self-timers offer the option to take multiple shots in quick succession after the timer elapses, providing users with a variety of images to choose from.


Group Photos

  • The self-timer is particularly useful for group photographs where the photographer wishes to be included in the frame.


  • Self-timers enable users to take self-portraits without having to stretch their arms or use a selfie stick.

Long Exposures

  • For long exposure photography, the self-timer helps to eliminate any camera shake that may occur when manually pressing the shutter button.

Critical Framing

  • When composing shots that require critical framing or minute adjustments, the self-timer can provide the extra time needed for those last-second tweaks.

How to Use

Enable Feature

  • The self-timer is usually accessible via the camera app’s settings or a dedicated button on the interface.

Set Duration

  • Choose the time delay according to your needs, from the available presets or through manual customization.

Compose Shot

  • Frame your shot as desired, taking into account where you will be positioned if you plan to be in the photo.

Activate Timer

  • Once ready, activate the timer and take your position. Be attentive to any visual or audio cues signaling the imminent shutter release.



  • When using the self-timer for group photos, coordinating everyone to look at the camera at the exact moment the shutter fires can be challenging.

Battery Drain

  • Constant use of self-timer features, especially those with visual and audio cues, can result in quicker battery depletion.


The self-timer is a versatile and practical feature in photography that allows for delayed shutter release, facilitating a wide range of shooting scenarios. Whether it’s for including the photographer in a group shot, enabling careful composition, or assisting in long exposure photography, the self-timer is a beneficial tool. However, its use can come with minor drawbacks such as battery drain and the challenge of timing shots perfectly.

Sebastian Chase
Sebastian Chase

Sebasitan Chase is a mobile digital photographer who enjoys trying out new mobile technologies, and figuring out how to get them to deliver high-quality images with minimal effort.Join him on his mission to help mobile photographers create incredible images and videos with their new-age digital cameras, no matter the form that they may take.

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