Sometimes recording a phone call is important, whether it be for legal reasons or just because you want to keep a record of the call. Sadly, making a recording for future reference isn’t as easy as you might think. Not only does Android lack a built-in tool for doing so, but very few apps in the Google Play Store can actually record calls with crystal-clear audio quality. That is why we put together this guide — to help you find the best way to record calls on your Android phone for future use.
Are you an iPhone user? Check out our guide on how to record phone calls with an iPhone.
Editor’s Note: There are federal and state laws pertaining to the recording of phone calls. As a general rule of thumb, though, you shouldn’t run into any legal trouble if you capture both parties verbally consenting to the recording. Some states require that only one party consent, however, feel free to check your state or local laws if you need further clarification.
Recording calls with Google Voice
Many Android users have the Google Voice app installed on their phone, which makes it easy to record phone calls using a Google Voice account. Not only that, but the app allows you to record your calls for free. Well, at least some of the calls. If you opt for Google Voice, you can only record incoming calls.
First, you need a Google Voice account. If you don’t have one, head to the Google Voice website and follow the on-screen instructions. Then, once your account is set up, you need to enable recording on your account, which is relatively easy to do.
Step 1: Navigate to the Google Voice homepage.
Step 2: Click the three vertical dots more menu located on the left and select Settings from the menu.
Step 3: Scroll to the Calls section and turn on Incoming call options by using the slider on the right.
Once done, you will be able to record incoming calls by simply hitting the “4” button on your keypad. When you press “4,” you and the person you’re talking with will hear a message saying that the recording is underway. Press “4” again, and the recording will stop and automatically save to your inbox. To access your recordings in the Voice app, head to the Menu and tap Recorded.
Google Voice app
You can also do this by using the Google Voice app. Click the hamburger menu located at the top right-hand corner and go to Settings. Choose Advanced Settings and turn on Incoming Call Options.
Recording calls with a third-party app
There are many apps out there designed for recording calls on your Android phone, though some of them work better than others. We tested a few of them to see how they worked, but before diving into our suggestions, there is something to keep in mind. Most of these apps rely solely on your microphone to record both incoming and outgoing audio, which means calls that aren’t recorded while on speakerphone will be a little quiet. That said, here are a few of the better recording apps we’ve come across.
Automatic Call Recorder Pro
Perhaps the best recording app around is Automatic Call Recorder Pro, largely because of how well-made the interface is. Thankfully, it doesn’t just look good — it works pretty well, too. The app provides a host of customizable settings, allowing you to tweak the audio quality and set the app to record every call automatically. Another cool feature is “shake to record,” which does exactly what you might think. If you want to record a call, simply shake your phone. You can also set the app to save recordings to various cloud services, such as Google Drive and Dropbox.
Call Recorder — ACR
Perhaps one of the best call recording apps in the Google Play Store right now is ACR. There are freemium and premium versions of the app; the latter costs $4 and gets rid of ads. The app is straightforward and looks good. It automatically records and saves calls based on phone number. The app also deletes old recordings automatically, but if you don’t want that to happen, you can mark a recording as important. Best of all, if you don’t want calls from a particular number to be recorded, you can exclude it.
One thing to note is that the app does not record Wi-Fi or VoIP calls — just cellular calls. What this means is that if you use a network like Google Fi, which makes calls over Wi-Fi, you need to disable Wi-Fi if you want the call to be recorded.
Recording calls with an external recorder
There is one more way to record a phone call, but it isn’t the easiest method and may cost a bit of money. Instead of using an app, you can pick up a dedicated recorder and then plug it into your phone’s 3.5-millimeter jack. There are several great options out there, including the Esonic Cell Phone Call Recorder and RecorderGear PR200, both of which are easy to use and cost between $80 and $110. That is more expensive than the aforementioned apps, sure, but they may be easier to use and a little more reliable.