How to record a call on your iPhone

Maria Diaz/ZDNET

There are many reasons you might want to (legally) record a phone call on your iPhone and so few ways to do it. While it’s reassuring that Apple prioritizes the privacy of its customers, the company’s commitment to this can unnecessarily complicate times when records are required.

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Before you record a phone call from your iPhone, there are a few practical things to keep in mind:

States have different laws about recording phone calls. Click here for your state’s guidelines. The iPhone does not allow recording through the built-in microphone while this phone is actively calling through its own software. Simply put, you cannot press record while actively on the phone.
You’ll need either an external iOS device with audio recording and microphone capabilities, or a third-party app with separate calling software like Google Voice. Also note that these third-party apps may incur a subscription fee. The method below is considered to be the most accessible for most iPhone users who want to record a conversation, especially if you want to be subtle about it.

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For the following steps use:

1 iPhone using speakerphone to make the call Another iPhone or iOS device using voice memos to record the call Record a call on your iPhone

First, make sure you have both an iPhone and another iOS device, e.g. B. an iPad or another iPhone that includes the Voice Memos app. The Voice Memos app comes preinstalled on most devices, but is also available for free on the App Store.

Open the Voice Memos app, tap the red record button, and speak long enough to ensure the audio quality is good enough to record a conversation and then hear it clearly. When you’re done recording, press the red button again and an audio file should appear that says “Voice Recording (number corresponds to existing voice recordings)”.

Screenshot by Christina Darby/ZDNET

Now play the file and see if the sound is detectable. Make the necessary adjustments before recording a call.

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For example, if the sound quality is poor, you may need to speak louder, increase microphone sensitivity, or move the speaker closer to your mouth.

Set up the second device to record voice memos. Place the device near the phone making the call and press the red button again to record.

Starting the recording before the call begins can add a few seconds of silence to the file, but ensures you don’t miss any of the conversation. On your iPhone, make sure you initiate the call in hands-free mode.

A tip: the red lines in the Voice Memo app indicate how well the app is picking up sounds. The bigger the red bars are, the more volume was detected. If the lines stay flat, you may need to turn up the call volume or move the devices closer together.

The higher red bars indicate a louder sound, while the lower ones mean a quieter sound, and you may need to move closer to the phone for voice memos to pick up a more accurate sound.

Screenshot by Christina Darby/ZDNET

For legal reasons, verify that the state in which you are recording and where you reside is a one-party or bipartisan state when it comes to consent to recording.

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One-party states only require that one person in the conversation – who would be considered you – consents to the recording. A two-party state requires that both the recorder and the person to be recorded consent.

When the conversation is over or you’ve got the information you need about your grandmother’s top secret apple pie recipe, end the recording by tapping the red button again.

In the Voice Memos app, select the recording’s file, tap the ellipses button (three dots) to bring up the sharing options, and send it directly to your via SMS, email, AirDrop, or even Google Drive iPhone.

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other methods

The above steps are the easiest, most efficient and least obvious way to record a phone call. If you (or a trusted 2nd party) don’t have another iOS device to spare, here are some alternatives.

Google Voice app for iOS allows you to make free and recorded calls over WiFi using Google Voice. You can select the device you want to make calls with from the app. For incoming calls, you can go to Settings > Calls > Incoming calls and then toggle the option to record incoming calls. Once everyone is on the phone, press the number four (4) on the keypad to start and stop recording. The call will appear in the Record menu option when it ends.

The Rev Voice Recorder app is also free and can record while you’re using your phone and transcribe your files after a conversation is over. Note that the transcription option costs $1.50 per minute, however. Once you’ve downloaded your file, it will appear as an MP3 file directly on your device. This is also another great and easy option to record phone calls and annotate screen recordings.

Easy Voice Recorder is another free app that allows you to record high-quality sounding voice memos or recordings to PCM, MP4 or ACC files, all of which can then be saved to your iCloud account. As the name suggests, this app is designed so that users can just whip out their phones and start recording anytime, anywhere. As a plus, Easy Voice Recorder is capable of converting text to transcription. If you download the app and use it on an iPad to record, you can also drag and drop recordings with the files or other recording apps for further transcription or simply to consolidate recordings.

If you want to record important business phone calls, conference calls, or interviews, this $11 app might be worth the investment. In order for this app to record, you conduct a “conference call” where the TapeACall app is one of the parties. Then go into the app and press the record button to record and “dial in” the app at the same time. You need to merge all “three” calls, so note that this process is a bit more tedious and a lot less subtle.

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Also: How to record a call on your Android phone

FAQsIs it illegal to record phone calls?

Federal law requires the consent of at least one party, which means you must participate in the conversation you are recording or have the consent of at least one person in that conversation. Otherwise, it may be construed as wiretapping or illegal wiretapping. Some states have even stricter laws that require the consent of everyone involved in the conversation.

Before recording a conversation, it’s always best to check your state’s laws.

Is there an app to record calls on iPhone?

There are several that perform this function in one way or another. However, Apple is restrictive when it comes to letting third-party apps use the microphone during a call. Because of this, most of the apps that help you record a call on your phone have to use clever mechanisms to bypass this barrier. Besides the above method using Voice Memos app, people also use Google Voice, TapeACall, Easy Voice Recorder and Rev Voice Recorder.

Alternatively, you can use most microphone-equipped computers or tablets to record phone conversations, as long as the phone is on speakerphone or the microphone is held close to the speaker next to your ear. Both iOS and Windows computers have numerous audio recording software options.

Does Apple Have an App to Record iPhone Calls?

Unfortunately no – at least not yet. Apple itself doesn’t have an app, but third-party apps are available on the App Store. Also, Voice Memos will most likely be installed automatically on your iOS device.

Will Screen Recording on iPhone Record My Call?

Screen recording during an audio or FaceTime call does just that – record your screen and screen only – no audio included.