Android P May Feature Native Support For Call Recording

Android P may feature native support for call recording, as suggested by a number of commits recently discovered in the main repository of the Android Open Source Project. Some code added to AOSP by Google's engineers references the existence of a "call recording tone" that would presumably be played once users press the corresponding button in order to start recording their conversation. The tone itself is said to be of the 1,400Hz variety, meaning people of all ages should be able to hear it without any issues, with one of the commits referring to it revealing that it's meant to be played every 15 seconds while the conversation is being recorded, presumably as to remind the person who didn't initiate the recording that it's still participating in one.

Should Google move forward with implementing the feature into a vanilla version of Android, it will likely change its terms of use so as to account for relevant laws across the world. Recording a phone call without notifying the other party of your activity and receiving their consent isn't admissible as court evidence in certain parts of the United States, with similar legislation being applicable in a number of other countries. One of the newly discovered commits suggests that the feature is presently pending "regulatory compliance requirements" but doesn't elaborate on the matter, though Google will most likely opt for a solution that will have Android users acknowledge that they're aware native call recording support must be used in accordance with applicable laws as part of the operating system's general terms of use. Wireless carriers who modify Android-powered smartphones before selling them will also be able to turn off the tone should they wish to do so, with that option presumably being meant to account for territories in which two-party consent is mandatory.

Another reference to the functionality indicates Google is planning to make it available to third-party developers, suggesting the tech will be offered as part of an application programming interface (API). Certain Android devices such as the ones from OnePlus already support native call recording but Alphabet's subsidiary never signaled such a feature may be in the works for the stock version of its operating system. Android P is widely expected to be identified by the version number 9.0 and its first developer preview is close to being finalized, according to recent reports.

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Dominik Bosnjak

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Dominik started at AndroidHeadlines in 2016 and is the Head Editor of the site today. He’s approaching his first full decade in the media industry, with his background being primarily in technology, gaming, and entertainment. These days, his focus is more on the political side of the tech game, as well as data privacy issues, with him looking at both of those through the prism of Android. Contact him at [email protected]