You’re in a hurry, on the go, racing to make some kind of
deadline… and you get an incredibly important call that requires your utmost
attention, but you’re completely scattered and distracted. Or you have a phone
interview with a prospective client and you need to retain everything in
the conversation. How do you manage this?
I set out to find the means with which to record calls on an
Android device a while ago. As I dove into this task, I realized two things:There are a lot of apps that promise to
- Few of those apps actually work
In defense of many of those apps, they do make the promise
of working flawlessly on a rooted phone. But who wants to root their only means
of communication (on the off-chance of bricking the device)? With that in mind,
I decided that I had to find an app that would work without rooting, and I did — sort
of. The app is called Call Recorder. On the Motorola Moto X, it works flawlessly. However, on the
Samsung Galaxy S4, it took a bit of tweaking (but did eventually perform
So, even when I did find a solid app, it was very picky
on which devices it would work. Before you install Call Recorder, check the full listing of non-supported devices. If you see your device on that list, Call Recorder isn’t the app for you.
Here are some features you can expect to see with Call Recorder:
- Enable/Disable call recording
- Records all calls
- Easy Play/Stop recorded audio
- Delete recorded items
- Lock recorded items to prevent from
- Share recorded items (only in Pro version)
- Confirmation dialog (only in Pro version)
Call Recorder is absolutely free, but Call Recorder Pro will set you back $5.57 (USD). If you need to be able to easily
share recordings or make use of the confirmation prompt, you’ll have to purchase the Pro version.
For those of you with a supported device, this app
will work like a charm. Let’s walk through the installation and usage of Call
As you might expect, the installation of Call Recorder is
simple. Just follow these steps:
your supported device, open the Google Play Store
for “call recorder” (no quotes)
and tap the entry for “Call Recorder Clever Mobile”
the installation to complete
That’s it. Call Recorder is now ready to be set up and used.
There’s isn’t much setup for Call Recorder (when used on a
supported device). It should just work, out of the box. When you first launch
the app, you’ll be prompted to turn recording on (Figure A).
Call Recorder on a Verizon-branded Motorola Moto X.
After recording is switched to on, all incoming calls will be recorded. With the free version, you will not be prompted to save or delete
Once a call is recorded, you’ll see it listed (by contact
name, if the caller is in your contacts) in the main window (Figure B).
The listing of recorded calls.
To listen to a recording, tap the entry, and then (if
prompted) select the app to play the audio. Call quality is surprisingly good
on both ends. Once you’ve listened to a call, you can delete it by selecting it
and then tapping the trash can icon that appears.
If you do wind up needing to make configuration options, you
can do so by tapping the settings (gear) icon in the upper right corner of the main window. Within
the settings, you can configure:
- Auto cleaning
- Audio source
- Audio channel (mono or stereo)
- Recording quality
- File format
If you’re not sure about your device’s compatibility with
Call Recorder, install the app and try it out. If it doesn’t work, visit the
settings and play around with the Audio Source options (Figure C).
Select the audio source to record.
You might get lucky and one of the different sources (Phone
line, Mic, Own voice, Opponent voice) could do the trick. On the Samsung Galaxy
S4, I was able to finally get the app to work by doing the following:
Call Recorder to record only the Opponent voice as the audio source
the file type to MPEG 4
a single call
Call Recorder to use Phone Line as audio source
to call using Google Play Music
If you have a need to record incoming (and outgoing) calls,
Call Recorder is probably the best option. I will say that, should you opt to
record incoming calls, you might need to inform the caller that they are being
recorded (some states do have laws to that effect). As a default, you should
probably have recording turned off on the app and turn it on only when
needed… lest you accidentally record a call you’d rather never relive.
Have you used Call Recorder or another recording app to capture calls on your Android device? Share your experience in the discussion thread below.