How to Use the Google Voice Recorder App on Android

Record notes, reminders and get automatic voice transcription

Recorder is the name of Google's voice recording app. It features automatic voice transcriptions during recordings so that you can not only read what's being said in real time but also search through all the recordings later.

This voice recorder differentiates between music and speech, works in the background so that you can multitask, can record and transcribe audio coming from your phone, auto-suggests titles for quick saves, records where you made the transcription, works entirely offline, lets you upload the data to Google Drive, and can share the audio and transcriptions over email and other apps.

Google's voice transcription app is installed on Pixel 4 by default, but older Pixel devices can install it manually from Google Play.

Only Google Pixel devices can use Recorder, so these steps are relevant only for Android users with a Pixel.

How to Make a New Recording

Download and install Recorder if you don't already have it, and then follow these steps to make a new voice recording:

  1. Tap the record button.

  2. Monitor the recording from the Audio tab or tap Transcript to see the voice transcription in real time.

    Live voice transcription on Pixel 3 with the Recorder app
  3. Select the pause button to save the recording. This is also how you temporarily pause the recording or quickly delete it.

  4. Fill out a title so that it's easy to recognize this voice recording later.

How to Search Voice Transcriptions

Transcriptions are the selling point in this app, and searching through them is super easy. You can search the Google voice recorder for any text, be it lyrics from a song, words in a podcast, your own voice, etc.

Since locations are saved along with recordings, you can also search for all transcriptions that were made at a specific location.

There are two ways to look through voice transcriptions. You can use the primary search bar at the top of all your recordings to find text in any of them, or you can use the search bar from within a recording to find text within that recording only.

Searching voice transcriptions in the Google Recorder app

How to Manage Your Voice Recordings

To share or delete more than one recording at once, press and hold on one and then tap the other ones you want to include.

Use the trash button to erase them or tap the share button to send the audio and/or text to someone.

Deleting and sharing voice transcriptions from the Google Recorder app

There's also a Save to Google Drive item in the three-dotted menu. You'll be asked where in your account you want the recording and transcription to be saved. Remember that these recording never leave your phone, so if you want them saved online, you have to manually select this Google Drive option.

These same options are available from each individual recording if you want to manage just one at a time.

The text part of a recording is saved in plain text with the TXT file extension. All music and voice recordings are in the M4A format.