Recording phone calls is a basic skill smartphone users should know how to do, as recordings are valuable for future reference, quality purposes, and other reasons. For Android users, many options are available to capture and save conversations done over the phone.
Call Recorder Apps
There’s an app for everything, and recording phone calls is no exception. As of this writing, these are some of the popular apps for recording phone calls in the Play Store with at least 10 million downloads and a user rating of 4 and above:
- Automatic Call Recorder
- CallApp: Caller ID & Recording
- Call Recorder
- Call Recorder – callX
- Call Recorder – Cube ACR
- Call Recorder Automatic
- RMC: Android Call Recorder
Besides their main function to record both sides of the conversation, these apps offer a variety of free and paid features like cloud storage integration, automatic recording, multiple audio file format support, and the ability to record voice calls made on other apps like WhatsApp, Skype, Facebook, WeChat, and Slack.
Some developers behind these apps, however, have noted that security and privacy-related changes to Android 9 and later versions have made it harder for recording apps to function well, leaving them only able to record your side of the conversation. As for apps that claim to fully work, note that they may only be compatible with certain phone brands and models.
As a workaround, recording apps may require you to use the loudspeaker during calls so they can capture and record the person on the other side via the microphone. Though in such cases, you might as well use a dedicated voice recorder to record the conversation.
Take note that Google is set to remove the phone call recording apps by May 2022, so make sure to download them if you want to have that functionality on your smartphone. You may also check out these Google Play Store alternatives if you download APKs.
Record calls from your PC
These days, it’s easy to connect your Android smartphone to a computer, so you can place and receive phone calls on the latter. Start by linking your phone to the PC with, say, Microsoft’s Phone Link app. Pair your computer and smartphone via Bluetooth to make and receive calls on the former. Then, with a microphone peripheral and the right software, you can record the conversation too. Two common software options that are free and open source are Audacity and OBS Studio.
Built-in Call Recording Features in Android
Perhaps you don’t have to look for external options, as Google has already developed an official call recorder feature for Android. The Phone by Google app has the ability to always record calls from unknown numbers as well as specific contacts. Or, you can do it manually via a record button on the ongoing call screen.
Phone manufacturers such as Samsung, OnePlus, OPPO, Vivo and Xiaomi may also have their own take on the recording feature on their own custom Android skins. Similar to Phone by Google, their own calling apps may have a record button on the call screen, although the feature may need to be enabled beforehand in the Settings app.
However, these built-in options may not be available for Android devices in the Philippines. It seems the country’s anti-wiretapping law is the reason behind the lack of support for the feature, as explained below.
- 10 useful widgets for your Android phone
- 6 online pen pal apps to meet someone and learn a new language online
- Android apps for video to MP3 conversion
Is recording phone calls legal in the Philippines?
The Republic Act No. 4200, also known as the Anti-Wiretapping Act of 1965, prohibits any person from intercepting and listening in on private communications done over the phone and related devices. The act also prohibits creating a record of such communication without the consent of all parties involved.
So, to record a phone call without courting controversy and getting into legal trouble in the country, you must get an express permission from the other parties to do so, and as clear proof the permission should be established during and part of the recorded communication itself. Read more about RA 4200 here.