Once a phone conversation is over, there’s no way to prove anything about the conversation between the two parties. However, it’s not hard to start recording your calls on Android. You might want to do so for convenience (so you don’t forget what favor your friend asked you) or security (so you have a record of everything you discuss on the phone).
Let’s take a look at some apps that allow you to record calls, and find which one is the best for your needs. Note that most of these have similar names, and we performed testing by calling an automated weather service.
A Note of Warning
In the USA, most states require that at least one party in a phone call be notified about the recording. Because of this, nearly every company will notify you of a call’s recording when you call in for support. Be sure that any recording you plan to do is legal before proceeding.
Automatic Call Recorder
True to its name, Automatic Call Recorder will grab all calls without your intervention. It allows you to add notes about the call so you can easily remember what a recording contains, and even lets you ignore certain contacts if you don’t want to record those calls. A $7 Pro upgrade removes the ads and gives some additional recording options.
In our test recording, this app didn’t sound good at first. Our side of the call was clear, but there was static throughout the recording and you could barely hear the other party. We tried the Voice Call and Voice Communication options in both AMR and WAV formats, and both sounded poor.
When we made a call using speakerphone, the recording sounded much better and was certainly loud enough. Thus, the free version of this app is fine for most people — just make sure you’re using speakerphone to record.
Download: Automatic Call Recorder (Free)
Another Call Recorder
Another Call Recorder is a bit slicker than Automatic Call Recorder. Before you start, it asks you to confirm that call recording is legal in your country and acknowledge that call recording apps can’t record Wi-Fi or internet calls. Once you jump in, you’ll find another plain Material Design app with a bit more to offer than the above.
We tested recording in M4A format and found that the recording had less static but was still way too quiet to hear. Even when we made a second call with speakerphone enabled, the other party was still quiet. Due to its advanced feature set and good looks, and despite its low volume, we recommend Another Call Recorder only if you want to share recordings to cloud storage.
Download: Another Call Recorder (Free)
On the recording side, it’s average compared to the others. Recording without speakerphone brings the same murky problems, making the other party almost impossible to understand. On speakerphone it’s better, but a hissing sound keeps the recording from being clear.
Aside from this, the app shoves “recommended” downloads in your face when you try to close it. Automatic Call Recorder has more features than this app without the ugly look, so we don’t recommend Call Recorder due to its ugly aesthetics, lack of settings, and poor recording quality.
Download: Call Recorder (Free)
Super Call Recorder
The recording quality is good on this one. There’s only minimal hissing, but again, you have to use the speakerphone to hear the other party. Because it doesn’t offer many customization options and is loaded with ads, we’d advise against using Super Call Recorder.
Download: Super Call Recorder (Free)
Call Recorder Automatic only gives you the option to enable or disable recording of incoming and outgoing calls. You can add a white list of contacts to avoid recording them, but that’s all the app offers in terms of settings.
Download: Call Recorder Automatic (Free)
When we started this comparison, we expected the apps to differ mostly in recording quality. What we found is that most apps record about the same, but offer different feature sets. The last three apps are all unattractive, loaded with ads, and make sharing your recordings difficult, which means they aren’t worth using.
Your experience with recording quality may vary due to your particular phone, network connection, or the other party’s volume. Give the loudness and recording source options a try if you aren’t happy with how your test recordings sound.
Do you record your Android phone calls? If we missed your favorite recording app, let us know about it by leaving a comment!
Originally written by Erez Zukerman on June 28th, 2013.