$92.00 $98.00 Buy It Now

Can an iphone be used as a thermal camera


Thermal imaging technology has revolutionized various industries, from search and rescue operations to building inspections. The ability to detect heat signatures makes thermal cameras invaluable tools in detecting anomalies that are invisible to the naked eye. With the rise of smartphones, many wonder: can an iPhone be used as a thermal camera?

While iPhones do not come equipped with built-in thermal imaging sensors, there are external attachments and apps available that can turn your iPhone into a thermal camera. These accessories and apps utilize the iPhone’s camera and processing power to capture and display thermal images.

Is iPhone a Thermographic Camera?

While the iPhone itself is not a thermographic camera, there are accessories and apps available that can turn it into one. These accessories, such as thermal imaging attachments or cases, can be used with the iPhone to capture thermal images and videos.

Additionally, there are apps that utilize the iPhone’s camera to measure temperature and display thermal images. These apps work by analyzing the infrared radiation emitted by objects and converting it into visible images that show variations in temperature.

Although the iPhone can be used as a thermographic camera with the right accessories and apps, its capabilities may not be as advanced or accurate as dedicated thermographic cameras. Professionals requiring precise thermal imaging may still opt for specialized equipment.

Thermal Imaging Technology

Thermal imaging technology, also known as infrared thermography, allows us to visualize and capture the heat emitted by objects and living beings. It works by detecting the infrared radiation that all objects emit based on their temperature.

See also  Best clip on camera lens for iphone 7 plus

This technology has a wide range of applications, including military, surveillance, medical, and industrial uses. In the context of smartphones like the iPhone, thermal imaging technology has been integrated into some devices, allowing users to capture thermal images and videos.

How Does Thermal Imaging Work?

Thermal imaging cameras use special sensors that can detect infrared radiation. The sensors convert the infrared radiation into a visual image that represents the temperature variations of the objects in the scene. These images can be displayed in different color palettes to help identify temperature differences more easily.

Benefits of Thermal Imaging

  • Identifying heat leaks in buildings for energy efficiency improvements.
  • Monitoring equipment and machinery for overheating, preventing breakdowns.
  • Detecting hidden animals or humans in search and rescue operations.
  • Medical diagnostics, such as identifying inflammation or circulation issues.

iPhone Thermal Camera Apps

If you want to transform your iPhone into a thermal camera, there are several apps available that can help you achieve this. These apps use the phone’s camera and special filters to detect and display temperature variances in the environment. Some popular iPhone thermal camera apps include FLIR ONE, Seek Thermal, and Therm-App. These apps offer various features such as thermal imaging, temperature measurement, and color palettes to enhance the thermal imaging experience. With the help of these apps, you can turn your iPhone into a powerful thermal imaging tool for a wide range of applications.

Pros and Cons of Using iPhone for Thermal Imaging

Using an iPhone for thermal imaging comes with both advantages and limitations. Here are some pros and cons to consider:

See also  Why is galaxy camera so much better than iphone


1. Accessibility: With the right thermal camera attachment, an iPhone can quickly transform into a thermal imaging device, making it convenient for on-the-go use.

2. Cost-effective: Compared to standalone thermal cameras, utilizing an iPhone for thermal imaging can be a more affordable option for occasional users or those on a budget.

3. Integration: The ability to capture thermal images directly on an iPhone allows for easy sharing, editing, and analysis using various apps and software available on the device.


1. Limited Resolution: The thermal imaging capabilities of an iPhone may not match those of dedicated thermal cameras, resulting in lower resolution and potentially less accurate thermal images.

2. Battery Drain: Using thermal imaging features on an iPhone can significantly drain the device’s battery, reducing its overall usage time when out in the field.

3. Compatibility: Not all iPhone models may be compatible with thermal camera attachments, limiting the options available for users looking to utilize thermal imaging technology.

Alternative Thermal Cameras

If you are looking for a dedicated thermal camera with higher resolution and more advanced features than what an iPhone can offer, there are several options available on the market. These cameras are specifically designed for thermal imaging applications and provide more accurate temperature readings and higher thermal sensitivity.

Some popular alternatives to using an iPhone as a thermal camera include FLIR Systems thermal cameras, Seek Thermal cameras, and FLUKE thermal imaging cameras. These devices offer a wide range of features such as higher resolution, adjustable temperature scales, multiple color palettes, and image enhancement tools.

See also  How to fix grainy iphone camera
Thermal Camera Model Resolution Temperature Range Special Features
FLIR ONE Pro 160 x 120 pixels -4°F to 752°F MSX technology for enhanced images
Seek Thermal CompactPRO 320 x 240 pixels -40°F to 626°F Focusable lens for sharp images
FLUKE TiS20+ Thermal Camera 120 x 90 pixels -4°F to 662°F IR Fusion technology for blending thermal and visual images

While these thermal cameras may come at a higher price point compared to using an iPhone, they offer superior performance and capabilities for professional users or those who require precise thermal imaging measurements.

Carmen J. Moore
Carmen J. Moore

Carmen J. Moore is an expert in the field of photography and videography, blending a passion for art with technical expertise. With over a decade of experience in the industry, she is recognized as a sought-after photographer and videographer capable of capturing moments and crafting unique visual narratives.

Camera Reviews