Perhaps it is because journalists make a lot of phone calls that they need accurate quotes from, but we have wanted easier ways to record phone calls on iPhone since the very beginning. In fact, we included it in our iOS 14 wishlist. If the latest report from GizChina is any indication, we may finally get our wish.
The site sources a screenshot from the jailbreak community, reportedly of a page in the Settings app of an early iOS 14 build. It shows a toggle to record the audio of all phone calls and FaceTime calls.
It includes a substantial chunk of legal indemnification language, which is typical of these sorts of features, though it is not quite written in the style we are used to seeing from Apple.
Laws regarding the recording of phone calls vary widely around the world, and even from state to state in the U.S., so we would not be surprised if this feature was not available in all regions where the iPhone is sold.
In most locations, though, it is perfectly legal for a person to record their own phone call as long as the other side is informed of the recording. Some areas require “both sides” to be informed, which in practice only applies to third-party recording of calls (obviously a person recording their own phone call is aware of that fact).
Regardless of the notification requirements for legal recording, it is not illegal in the U.S. and most other countries to sell equipment capable of recording calls. It’s already trivial to record an iPhone call by using any other recording device. Consider simply placing a call on speakerphone and recording it with any tape recorder or a webcam. For that matter, Google Voice (a virtualized phone service) has had the ability to record phone calls in the cloud for a long time.
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I have written professionally about technology for my entire adult professional life - over 20 years. I like to figure out how complicated technology works and explain it in a way anyone can understand.