How to record a phone call on your iPhone

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iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Mini.

Jason Cipriani/ZDNet

There are many reasons to record a phone call on your iPhone and a few ways to do it. However, since Apple prioritizes customer privacy, this process isn’t simple – on purpose. Also keep in mind that different states have different laws regarding when you can legally record a conversation.

However, to record a phone call on your iPhone, you will need two devices for the most popular call recording method. This is because iPhones do not allow recording through the built-in microphone while the specific iPhone is handling a phone call.

There are apps available that can help bypass this, but the method below is often considered the most handy for those who want to record their iPhone conversations.

also: How to record a phone call on your Android phone

Record a phone call on your iPhone

Materials and tools:

  • iPhone
  • Another iOS device with microphone and APP function

time needed:

  • A few minutes of preparation, plus the duration of the conversation. If you plan to edit or copy the call recording, these steps will add more time.
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Image of the Voice Memos app page in the Apple App Store.

Joshua Cox Step

1. Test the voice memos app

First, make sure you have an iPhone and another iOS device that includes a microphone. The second device could be the iPhone as well. The important part is that the Voice Memos app can be loaded and work with either a built-in or a connected microphone (either of which should be fine). Apple Voice Memos is free from the App Store and comes pre-installed on some devices.

Before proceeding, make sure that the application is installed and running. Open the Voice Memos app, hit the record button, and start speaking into the microphone. You only need to do this long enough to create an audio file. Now, play the file again and see if the audio can be discerned. If the sound quality is too low, you may need to speak louder, increase the sensitivity of the microphone, or place the speaker close to your mouth. Once you have done a good test run, proceed to the second step.

2. Start recording

In the Voice Memos app on your second device, tap the record button again. Once you start recording on your second device, start the phone call on your iPhone and set it to speakerphone mode. Starting the recording before the call starts may add a few seconds of silence to the file but will ensure that no conversation is missed. iPhone audio must be discoverable from the second iOS device’s microphone. Besides turning on the speakerphone, this might involve turning up the volume and arranging the second device’s microphone close to your iPhone’s speakerphone.

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Image of the Voice Memos app showing both the record button and the sound waveform screen.

Joshua Cox Step

You can somewhat tell how well Voice Memos captures audio by watching the red lines that appear above the record button. This is known as an audio waveform display. When the red bars are larger, a larger volume is detected. If the line of red bars remains constant, the app or microphone is not detecting enough sound for a viable recording. If the app appears to be picking up audio correctly, you can continue your conversation.

3. Inform the other party that you are registering

Before entering the conversation, tell the other party that you are recording the call, as many states require consent from two parties for this to be legal.

Suppose you know the laws of your state and live in a state that requires only one party’s consent (and so do the other people in the conversation). In this case, you can technically keep quiet about it, even though it may be considered rude or unethical.

Now you can carry on the conversation as usual. However, make sure that the phone in use is in speakerphone mode and that the second device is actively recording and close enough to pick up the sound from your phone’s speakerphone. If you move during the conversation, it is necessary to ensure that these devices remain close to each other.

4. File Transfer

You can end the call on your iPhone and end the recording on your second device when the conversation ends.

From within the Voice Memos app, select the recording file, hit the delete button to bring up the sharing options, and send it directly to the iPhone via text message. Alternatively, you can share it with yourself via email or other media.

Is it illegal to record phone calls?

Federal law requires at least one party’s consent, which means you need to be part of the conversation you’re recording or have at least one person in that conversation agree. Otherwise, it can be interpreted as wiretapping or illegal eavesdropping. Some states have stricter laws that require the consent of all persons involved in the conversation.

Before recording a conversation, it’s always a good idea to check your state’s laws — and those of everyone else in the conversation. While call recording is probably a less extreme privacy violation than others iPhone Spy CasesIt can still be very annoying to people.

Is there a call recording app on the iPhone?

There are many who perform this function in one way or another. However, Apple is restrictive about allowing third-party apps to use the microphone during a phone call. For this reason, most of the apps that help you record a call on your phone should use smart mechanisms to get around this barrier. In addition to the method described above with the Voice Memos app, people also use Google Voice, TapeACall, and Otter.

Alternatively, you can use most computers and microphones to record phone conversations as long as the phone is in speakerphone or the microphone is mounted near the speaker next to your ear. Both iOS and Windows computers have many audio recording software options available.

also: How to stop spam messages on your iPhone