Rec (Screen Recorder) app review: record your Android screen

Developer: SPECTRLPlatforms: Android
Category: UtilityPrice: Free

Recording whatever it is you're doing on your Android device is possibly among the most sorely missed features of the versatile OS, and the years haven't been kind to any of the few solutions on the market. Even today, those apps offer a second grade recording, as quality is often far below the sanitary minimum, not to mention that the footage itself is downright laggy due to a low frame rate. Worse yet, running some of those apps puts quite the strain on your smartphone, often barring you from recording game footage.

But here are the good news: Android 4.4 KitKat fixes all of that. Thanks to a new native feature, devices running KitKat are able to record whatever is happening on your screen quite successfully. Bitrate can be tweaked to high enough levels, the frame rate is acceptable, and you can capture at a resolution of up to 1080x1920 pixels. Unfortunately, there's a catch -- you need to fire up a command prompt, tether your phone to your PC that has the correct drivers and tools running, and a bunch more. That, as you can guess, is not optimal, and that's exactly where the new Rec app comes in. Rec allows you to do all of that, and more.

Before we get into the rather shallow depths of Rec, first things first. You'll need a rooted device for this app to work, and it unfortunately also needs to be running Android 4.4 KitKat or higher. It'll also work on some custom Android 4.4 KitKat ROMs, but not all.

Anyway, Rec is very much alike the native screenrecord feature, as we noted. Unlike it, however, it gives you wider berth to tweak settings, such as the duration of the clip -- 5 minutes tops in the free version, versus the 3 minutes limit using the native screenrecord. Moreover, you don't need to be tethered to your computer for the app to work, meaning that you can record footage on the go -- a considerable advantage over Google's rather poorly-concocted solution. Lastly, Rec can record audio (up to 30 seconds in the free version) via the microphone, though that's obviously not the best solution out there. It goes without saying that, as with most free apps, there's a 'Pro' version of Rec. For the price of £1.99 ($3.25), you're getting extras, such as up to hour of video/audio capture, the option to create your own presets, play with the notifications, and the option to shake your device to stop recording. Another well thought-out feature that the Pro version adds is 'auto-show touches'. That said, the Android system itself supports such a feature, and you can enable it on your device whenever you're about to shoot manually from the developers options.

Another side of the Rec app that caught our attention is its simplistic design. True to Google's latest design guidelines, Rec will make you feel at home instantly, and you won't have to go digging through countless settings to figure out what the app can do. We only regret the developer's choice to always force you to set your preferred settings manually, as to prompt you to consider the Pro version of the app. Nevertheless, setting those is a pain-free and quick process, and the free version will get you the job done in most scenarios.


  • Can operate without a PC
  • Offers more settings than the native screenrecord feature
  • Minimalistic and efficient design


  • Lack of presets forces you to re-setup every time
  • Audio recording is inevitably poor

PhoneArena rating:

Developer: SPECTRLPlatforms: Android
Category: UtilityPrice: Free



1. xperiaDROID

Posts: 5629; Member since: Mar 08, 2013

Only for Android 4.4 KitKat? Damn, I wish my phone is running 4.4 right now cuz this app is a must have. :(

2. wilsong17 unregistered

agree i can show some tutorial for my friends on something they need help with

4. jaytai0106

Posts: 1888; Member since: Mar 30, 2011

YES!! This is an app I have been looking for. I'm so happy to find it :D I'm going to test it out and see if I like it before I upgrade to the pro version.

9. Berzerk000

Posts: 4275; Member since: Jun 26, 2011

You already need to be rooted in order to run the app, might as well install a custom ROM.

10. wilsong17 unregistered

i may but i have a note 3 dont need too i wait for the update

13. downphoenix

Posts: 3165; Member since: Jun 19, 2010

shouldnt "Only Supports Kitkat" be in the con section as well? That is a pretty small percentage of phones that have it.

3. Ant34

Posts: 193; Member since: Aug 10, 2013

"meaning that you can record footage on the go -- a considerable advantage over Google's rather poorly-concocted solution." It's not poorly concocted. It is what it is because it's for developers. They're trying to discourage end users from using it.

5. Chris.P

Posts: 567; Member since: Jun 27, 2013

You mean the same devs that went out of their way to create tiny tools to easily operate the feature? Weird that they would do that. Yes, it's not for the general public -- fair enough. Doesn't mean that devs enjoy having to deal with it. It's a hassle, no matter who you are.

7. Awalker

Posts: 1986; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

No. They made a tool for a group that it is not intended for simply to make a buck. They could have kept the tool to themselves or allowed other devs to use it.

8. Chris.P

Posts: 567; Member since: Jun 27, 2013

Not referring to the app above.

6. Sauce unregistered

I use Display Recorder for my iPhone and it is amazing. You can try downloading Cydia for Android (although it isnt nearly as full and complete) and download Display Recorder if it's available.

11. wilsong17 unregistered

cydia for android tf did i just read

12. Sauce unregistered

Yes, Cydia for Android. It is no where as complete as it is on iOS but it might have DisplayRecorder

14. ManManny

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 08, 2014

Hands down best screen recorder / streamer for android is Shou .( web: ) Search YouTube for "Shou android screen"

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