There have been a variety of methods that have circulated over the years to allow users to record calls on their iPhones – from hardware solutions to software solutions and even jailbreak apps. I’ve recommended each of these methods in the past to varying degrees – but the truth is, there are much easier and more effective methods to get the job done.
While tools such as Google Voice can be effective, Google Voice is limited to recording ONLY incoming calls. Other solutions, including jailbreak solutions and a handful of App Store apps, are somewhat shady and unreliable, and could leave you money down for an app that didn’t work, or risk the stability of your device.
I’ve nailed down two methods that have proven very effective for me personally – one which requires some “extras,” and one that doesn’t.
Method 1: Hardware Recording
This isn’t necessarily the easiest or cleanest solution, but it is extremely effective. Hardware recording of your iPhone calls involves a bit of setup, and the following equipmentL
- Audio patch cable, which you plug into your iPhone headphone jack, and into a voice recorder (less than $10 on Amazon).
- A voice recorder with simultaneous audio in and audio out (widely available on Amazon – including this one for under $20).
- Any pair of iPhone-compatible headphones or ear buds.
You more or less need to be expecting a call (or planning to place one) using this method – but it is fairly simple. Just plug the patch cable into the iPhone, then into the audio-in jack on the voice recorder, and plug your headphones into the headphone jack so you can hear the caller. When you place or answer the call you want to record, just hit the record button on your voice recorder, and you should be good to go!
Note: You may want to order voice recorders that you can return, as you may have to try several to find a model that works this way with no issues.
Method 2: Software Recording via Bluetooth and Mac (The easy way).
If you have access to a Mac, and don’t feel like lugging out the “heavy equipment,” there’s a much cheaper and easier solution available – a fantastic $5 Mac app called Dialogue (discussed here).
Dialogue is simple, and relatively flawless. Even better? The setup process takes less than 5 minutes to complete, and as expected, the app remembers your iPhone, and your settings, so you never have to worry about it after the initial setup. Using the app could not be more straight forward or intuitive.
Once it’s set up, if a call comes in on your iPhone, a floating window will pop up on your Mac – just click the accept button, and you’re all set. But wait – there’s more! This is the point where Dialogue transitions from “good” to “great”: Once your call is connected, you can use the app to record the entire call by simply tapping a single button.
Once you click the “stop” button, or the call is disconnected, you’re automatically prompted to save the recording for future reference.
Not only is it smart, well-implemented, and a fantastic idea – it’s also the only app on the Mac App Store that I know of that does anything like it. It’s brilliantly useful.
Each of the above methods have their pros and cons – and hopefully one of the two will work well for you! Let us know if you have yet another method that we haven’t discussed!
Also, it’s important to note: It’s your responsibility to make certain that you know the local, state, and federal laws governing the recording of phone calls before you attempt to do so. These laws can vary from state to state, and may require specific provisions – like informing the individual on the other end, or getting their verbal consent.
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