Mobility

SnipBack: The best audio recording Android app you've never heard of

There's a new Android audio recorder in town, and it's making its competition look bad. Find out why SnipBack should be your go-to mobile recording app.

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Image: Jack Wallen

I get inspired...a lot, and sometimes when I'm away from my desk, the only thing I have handy is my phone. I also do a lot of podcasts, some of which involve interviewing people. Because of all the creative work I do, I need to have the ability to record audio with me at all times.

For the longest time I depended upon the standard recording fare. With those apps, recordings can get rather long and take up significant space on your device. And, the important bits of a long recording can be a challenge to locate.

But what if you could have a smarter voice recording app—one that could save only the bits you want? Say, for example, you're doing an interview or sitting in on a lecture, and you want to be able to easily retain only certain sections of the audio. What do you do? You install and use SnipBack, one of the most unique and well-designed voice recording apps on the market.

Installing SnipBack

  1. Open the Google Play Store on your Android device.
  2. Search for SnipBack.
  3. Locate and tap the entry by Cosmic Pie Design.
  4. Tap Install.
  5. If prompted, tap Accept.
  6. Allow the installation to complete.

Once installed, you'll find the launcher on your home screen, in your App Drawer, or in both spots.

Using SnipBack

  1. Open SnipBack.
  2. Tap the START LISTENING button (Figure A). When you press the START LISTENING button, SnipBack does exactly what you'd expect...it starts listening.
  3. Once SnipBack is listening, tap 10 SEC, 30 SEC, or 5 MIN to save the previous block of time.
  4. Give the snip a name and tap OK.

Figure A

Figure A

The SnipBack main window on a OnePlus 3.

Say you're listening to a lecture, and the last 30 seconds of audio was really important—tap the 30 SEC button and that 30 seconds will be saved with a user-specified name. While you save that snip of audio, SnipBack continues listening, so you're not missing out on anything. You could even save the previous 5 minutes of audio, and that will include the previous 30 seconds you saved.

SnipBack allows you to stop listening and restart listening at any point. When you tap the STOP LISTENING button, you get the option to retain the entire audio session from the beginning.

SEE: Gallery: 10 Android apps every new mobile developer needs in their toolbox (TechRepublic)

Customizing SnipBack

Out of the box you can save 10 seconds, 30 seconds, and 5 minutes. Depending upon what you are recording, you might need to save 30 seconds, 60 seconds, and 180 seconds (or any combination of seconds). To customize the time snips, follow these steps.

  1. Open SnipBack.
  2. Tap OPTIONS.
  3. Move the sliders to your desired times (Figure B).
  4. Tap OK.

Figure B

Figure B

Altering the duration of snips.

You can change the audio quality within that same window. By default, SnipBack records at GOOD QUALITY. Tap that to shift to HIGH QUALITY. Tap again and you're at LOW QUALITY. Remember that the higher the audio quality, the larger the saved file.

If you want to return to the default settings, tap DEFAULT, and you're good to go.

An important step forward

SnipBack is an important step forward in mobile device audio recording. Most audio recording apps are fairly straightforward and lack much in the way of intelligence—SnipBack changes all of that. With the ability to save only what you want, while continuing to listen (in case you want to save even more), SnipBack ensures you don't miss anything, and that you don't fill your internal storage with recordings you don't want.

If you use an audio recorder on a regular basis, you must give SnipBack a try. I can almost promise it will become your go-to recorder...it's that good. SnipBack has become my default audio recorder, and I cannot imagine any other app dethroning it from that coveted spot.

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About Jack Wallen

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.

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