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How To Record a Phone Call on Every Device (and What You Need To Know)

This article was published on June 21, 2024

Recording a phone call isn’t a new concept for businesses. Sometimes you need a way to remember important customer information.

 

Additionally, in contact centers, recorded calls are valuable tools for teaching and mentoring agents. However, you need to ensure you comply with any privacy requirements to avoid potential disputes.

 

Regardless of the reason, you’re here because you want to know how to record a phone call — and you’ve come to the right place!

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How To Record Phone Calls on iPhone/IOS & Android

Wondering if you can record phone calls on iPhone and Android? The short answer is yes, you can. Let’s look at the range of options available.

Google Voice

Google Voice is a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) app for phones. It may come pre-installed on some Android devices, but you can also download it from your relevant app store.

Keep in mind that Google Voice can only record incoming calls.

Here’s how to record a phone call with Google Voice:

  • Download and install the app if you don’t have it.

  • Open the Voice app and go to Settings.

  • Look under Incoming Call Options and turn on Incoming Call Recording.

  • After answering an incoming call, press 4 to begin recording

  • Press 4 again to stop recording.

Always gain caller consent before recording a call with Google Voice (more on the consent aspects of call recording later).

The Phone App (Android only)

On most Android devices, you can record calls with the basic Phone app. The record feature works in the U.S. and other countries that allow call recordings.

Note: Call recording is only available on Android 9 and later versions.

Here’s how to use the Phone app to record phone calls:

  • Open the Phone app to make or place a call.

  • To record your call, on the ongoing call screen, tap Record.

  • To stop recording, tap Stop.

You can also use the Phone app to record calls automatically:

  • Open up the Phone app.

  • Tap More options and click on Settings.

  • Find and select Call recording.

  • From here you can turn on Always Record for:

    >    Numbers not in your contacts

       -         Tap Always record.

    >    Selected numbers from your contacts

     -       Tap Always record on selected numbers.

     -       Click the Add button to select each contact from the list you want to add.

As always, be sure to comply with local and/or state laws when using the Phone app to record call conversations. When you start a recording, a message is played to notify both parties that the recording is starting.

Using Third-Party Apps to Record Calls

There are plenty of third-party apps in Android app stores like Google Play. Options range from simple call recording apps to full-blown business communication platforms. The latter comes packed with features.

Of course, to use these apps, you’ll need to install them and create a user account. If they offer a free service, it’s typically quite limited, such as only 60 seconds of recording time per call.

You won’t find standard call recording apps for the iPhone in the App Store. iPhone call recording apps require you to receive or make calls first. To do this, connect to the online phone service as the third “caller,” who listens in and records the call.

External Recorders

You can always try a good old external device to record phone call audio. Any device with a microphone can record phone calls. It works best if you keep the recorder close to your smartphone while you’re on a call. Of course, you’ll need to turn on the speakerphone.

Some modern external recorders can use audio line out and Bluetooth connections to receive audio from your phone. These devices will give you better audio quality. However, if you experience connectivity problems, you’ll fail to record the session.

Use Another Phone

Do you know what else works perfectly fine as an external recording device? A spare mobile phone. Both Android and Apple devices come equipped with a recording feature. 

You can use the Recorder app on Android phones or the Voice Memos app on iPhones. Just set the device up near your other phone and hit record before starting a call. Remember, you’ll need to put the call on speaker so that the recording app can pick up the audio from your phone call conversations.

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The Best Apps To Record Phone Calls

Recording phone calls helps your business in a number of ways, but the above options simply aren’t that convenient at scale. Luckily, there are plenty of apps that streamline the process — let's look at some of the best.

Vonage

Vonage is a business communications solution that comes packed with call recording features. Add our On-Demand Call Recording to any business phone number, and you’ll be able to download, manage, and delete recordings as needed.

Every department extension can store up to 15 hours of call recordings. Recordings are private for each user and not accessible to Super Uses or Administrators.

Alternatively, there’s the VBC Company Call Recording option. In this case, the Administrator can set up call recording rules and all recordings are accessible through the Admin Portal. This comes with 500 hours of storage, with increments of 250 hours available as add-ons.

We should mention that Vonage uses VoIP calling to handle inbound and outbound calls. As a unified communications solution, it gives you unlimited domestic calling with SMS, voicemail, and team messaging. You can also set up “contact center lite” features, such as an AI virtual assistant, shared line appearance, and advanced call management features.

Unlike mobile call recording apps, Vonage call recording can be set up to work on desktops and laptops.

ACR Phone

The ACR app is a dialer and spam call blocker that you can find on the Google Play store (Android only). It replaces your default dialer to streamline the blocking of unwanted or unsolicited calls. It also comes with phone call recording capabilities, and additional features like an auto dialer for reaching busy lines and call notes you can create after a conversation has ended.

Automatic Call Recorder Pro

The Automatic Call Recorder Pro app does exactly what the name says. Use this app to turn on automatic recording for every call. In fact, once installed and opened, automatic recording is on by default.

You’ll have to accept accessibility permission when first launching the app. There are plenty of customization options, and you can add to a list of callers to exclude from automatic call recording. Call recordings upload to the cloud, where you can listen to, download, and delete files.

TapeACall

TapeACall works with both Android and iPhone. In fact, it’s one of the limited offerings that manages to bypass Apple’s no-recording policy. The app is able to do this by leveraging your device's three-way calling.

You conduct a phone call as normal. Next, you open TapeACall and press the record button, which actually starts a call with the service. You then “merge” the calls together. The recording line listens to and stores the phone call for later use.

Rev Call Recorder

Rev Call Recorder is another iPhone app that offers users the ability to record phone call audio. It lets you record both inbound and outbound calls without having to merge them with a third line. You need only to push the record button while on call. Recordings can be emailed, sent as SMS, or uploaded to your Dropbox account. 

The biggest difference between Rev and other offerings is transcription capabilities. Transcripts make it easier for you to search for keywords and other important information. Recording is free but you will have to pay for transcription services.

Rev also offers a Voice Recorder app to both Android and Apple users. You can use this app to voice record phone calls on speaker and send them off for transcription.

Is Recording a Phone Permissible? What You Need To Consider

The legality surrounding call recording or call monitoring is somewhat complex, as both federal and state laws apply.

Federal law requires at least one party give consent to record a call. So, if (for example) you are a party to the conversation, you may give your consent to record a call.

State laws may require consent from one or all-parties involved. With the latter, all involved parties must be aware and consent to any call recording taking place.

Here’s a Justia survey of all 50 states on call recording:

One-Party Consent

All-Party Consent

Alabama | Alaska | Arizona | Arkansas | Colorado | District of Columbia

Georgia | Hawaii | Idaho | Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Kentucky | Louisiana

Maine | Minnesota | Mississippi | Missouri | Nebraska | New Jersey  

New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | North Dakota | Ohio  

Oklahoma | Rhode Island | South Carolina | South Dakota | Tennessee

Texas | Utah | Virginia | West Virginia | Wisconsin | Wyoming

 

California | Connecticut | Delaware | Florida | Illinois | Maryland

Massachusetts | Michigan | Montana | Nevada | New Hampshire

Oregon | Pennsylvania | Vermont | Washington

 

Jurisdiction and compliance get murkier when a call involves multiple states — and even more so if different countries are involved.

For instance, what happens when your remote agent in Australia connects to your cloud contact center in Atlanta to take a call from a customer in Utah?

The simplest solution is to cover all your bases. Always gain consent from every party on a call before recording phone conversations. Letting customers and employees know that calls are being recorded (and why) goes a long way to maintaining trust.

Record Phone Call Audio With Purpose-Built On-Demand Software

Call recording is useful for journalists, call center agents, and anyone who wants a record of what was said. For basic use, built-in or third-party apps will do the job just fine. Even a professional conducting a phone interview can get away with using an external recorder.

In a business setting, these simple recording methods don’t always fit the bill. You need seamless call recording for both on-site and remote team members. Plus, call recordings contain sensitive data about your clients and your business. Data breaches can prove costly in more ways than one.

The best option is to go with a purpose-built, on-demand solution like Vonage. With our platform, you can manage all business communications from one central space. Team members can use our apps to work and make calls from anywhere with an internet connection.

Our on-demand call recording works with any extension, giving users access to recordings stored securely in the cloud. Search for specific records according to name, direction, date, duration, and user notes. 

Listen to and download calls with just a few clicks, giving you crucial information when in or out of the office. 

Basic apps are okay for occasional use, but not for everyday. Instead, sign up with a purpose-built VoIP solution like Vonage and do much more.

Still Have Questions About Recording Phone Calls?

Most Android devices have built-in call recording for incoming calls. However, you need to customize your phone settings to turn this feature on.

Remember: You should never record a phone call without consent. To confirm consent, the phone announces that recording has started so both parties are aware.

You can record calls on your computer. First, you need a purpose-built VoIP calling solution to enable you to make phone calls. Second, you need a service provider like Vonage that lets you add call recording options to any package.

Once you’ve added call recording to your VoIP system, you can start a call and hit that record button once the recipient has answered.

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