There are plenty of apps in the Google Play Store that claim to record your telephone calls, but few work – especially since the launch of Android 8. Apps that used to work perfectly every time have suddenly stopped recording the person on the other end of the line, making them faintly pointless. So how do you record calls on Android?
How to record calls on Android
My long-term favourite app for this job was Call Recorder Pro by C Mobile. (I mention the maker, as there are several apps using that name.) However, this app stopped working properly when my Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge was recently upgraded to Android 8.
After smashing through half the call recorders in the app store, I finally found a decent replacement: Automatic Call Recorder by Appliqato.
It’s very simple to use. Every call you make or receive is automatically recorded – you’ll get a notification after the call is completed showing you that it’s been stored. You can then go into the app, click on the call in question and listen to it again, which is invaluable if someone dictated a telephone number, address or other piece of vital info and you didn’t have a pen handy.
Calls are saved as MP4 files by default, but you can change that to AMR, AAC or WAV files in the settings. You can also determine how many recordings to keep – the default is the last 100 calls, which could fill up your phone storage.
You can also share the recordings, with all the regular options to share to social media or to online storage services such as Dropbox. As a journalist, being able to record phone interviews and keep them in Dropbox for safekeeping is great for (a) transcribing said interviews later; and (b) legal protection. Talking of which…
Is it legal to record telephone calls?
Yes, it is perfectly legal to record your own telephone calls for private use (such as transcribing conversations at a later date). You might argue it is plain courtesy to inform the other person that the call is being recorded, and I certainly do so when I’m interviewing people over the telephone, but it’s by no means a legal requirement.
It is most definitely illegal to record a telephone conversation between two or more people which you are not party to, however.
There are also different rules for businesses. This primer from telecoms regulator Ofcom (PDF) should help if you’re thinking about recording business calls.
Now read this: How do I stop unwanted telephone calls?