camera.getPicture

Takes a photo using the camera or retrieves a photo from the device's album. The image is returned as a base64 encoded String or as the URI of an image file.

navigator.camera.getPicture( cameraSuccess, cameraError, [ cameraOptions ] );

Description

Function camera.getPicture opens the device's default camera application so that the user can take a picture (if [Camera](camera.html).sourceType = [Camera](camera.html).PictureSourceType.CAMERA, which is the default). Once the photo is taken, the camera application closes and your application is restored.

If [Camera](camera.html).sourceType = [Camera](camera.html).PictureSourceType.PHOTOLIBRARY or [Camera](camera.html).PictureSourceType.SAVEDPHOTOALBUM, then a photo chooser dialog is shown, from which a photo from the album can be selected.

The return value will be sent to the [cameraSuccess](parameter/cameraSuccess.html) function, in one of the following formats, depending on the [cameraOptions](parameter/cameraOptions.html) you specify:

  • A String containing the Base64 encoded photo image.
  • A String representing the image file location on local storage (default).

You can do whatever you want with the encoded image or URI, for example:

  • Render the image in an <img> tag (see example below)
  • Save the data locally (LocalStorage, Lawnchair, etc)
  • Post the data to a remote server

Note: The image quality of pictures taken using the camera on newer devices is quite good. Encoding such images using Base64 has caused memory issues on some of these devices (iPhone 4, BlackBerry Torch 9800). Therefore, using FILE_URI as the 'Camera.destinationType' is highly recommended.

Supported Platforms

  • Android
  • BlackBerry WebWorks (OS 5.0 and higher)
  • iPhone
  • Windows Phone 7 ( Mango )

Windows Phone 7 Quirks

Invoking the native camera application while your device is connected via Zune will not work, and the error callback will be triggered.

Quick Example

Take photo and retrieve Base64-encoded image:

navigator.camera.getPicture(onSuccess, onFail, { quality: 50,
    destinationType: Camera.DestinationType.DATA_URL
 }); 

function onSuccess(imageData) {
    var image = document.getElementById('myImage');
    image.src = "data:image/jpeg;base64," + imageData;
}

function onFail(message) {
    alert('Failed because: ' + message);
}

Take photo and retrieve image file location:

navigator.camera.getPicture(onSuccess, onFail, { quality: 50, 
    destinationType: Camera.DestinationType.FILE_URI }); 

function onSuccess(imageURI) {
    var image = document.getElementById('myImage');
    image.src = imageURI;
}

function onFail(message) {
    alert('Failed because: ' + message);
}

Full Example

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
  <head>
    <title>Capture Photo</title>

    <script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8" src="cordova-1.6.1.js"></script>
    <script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8">

    var pictureSource;   // picture source
    var destinationType; // sets the format of returned value 

    // Wait for Cordova to connect with the device
    //
    document.addEventListener("deviceready",onDeviceReady,false);

    // Cordova is ready to be used!
    //
    function onDeviceReady() {
        pictureSource=navigator.camera.PictureSourceType;
        destinationType=navigator.camera.DestinationType;
    }

    // Called when a photo is successfully retrieved
    //
    function onPhotoDataSuccess(imageData) {
      // Uncomment to view the base64 encoded image data
      // console.log(imageData);

      // Get image handle
      //
      var smallImage = document.getElementById('smallImage');

      // Unhide image elements
      //
      smallImage.style.display = 'block';

      // Show the captured photo
      // The inline CSS rules are used to resize the image
      //
      smallImage.src = "data:image/jpeg;base64," + imageData;
    }

    // Called when a photo is successfully retrieved
    //
    function onPhotoURISuccess(imageURI) {
      // Uncomment to view the image file URI 
      // console.log(imageURI);

      // Get image handle
      //
      var largeImage = document.getElementById('largeImage');

      // Unhide image elements
      //
      largeImage.style.display = 'block';

      // Show the captured photo
      // The inline CSS rules are used to resize the image
      //
      largeImage.src = imageURI;
    }

    // A button will call this function
    //
    function capturePhoto() {
      // Take picture using device camera and retrieve image as base64-encoded string
      navigator.camera.getPicture(onPhotoDataSuccess, onFail, { quality: 50,
        destinationType: destinationType.DATA_URL });
    }

    // A button will call this function
    //
    function capturePhotoEdit() {
      // Take picture using device camera, allow edit, and retrieve image as base64-encoded string  
      navigator.camera.getPicture(onPhotoDataSuccess, onFail, { quality: 20, allowEdit: true,
        destinationType: destinationType.DATA_URL });
    }

    // A button will call this function
    //
    function getPhoto(source) {
      // Retrieve image file location from specified source
      navigator.camera.getPicture(onPhotoURISuccess, onFail, { quality: 50, 
        destinationType: destinationType.FILE_URI,
        sourceType: source });
    }

    // Called if something bad happens.
    // 
    function onFail(message) {
      alert('Failed because: ' + message);
    }

    </script>
  </head>
  <body>
    <button onclick="capturePhoto();">Capture Photo</button> <br>
    <button onclick="capturePhotoEdit();">Capture Editable Photo</button> <br>
    <button onclick="getPhoto(pictureSource.PHOTOLIBRARY);">From Photo Library</button><br>
    <button onclick="getPhoto(pictureSource.SAVEDPHOTOALBUM);">From Photo Album</button><br>
    <img style="display:none;width:60px;height:60px;" id="smallImage" src="" />
    <img style="display:none;" id="largeImage" src="" />
  </body>
</html>