Capturing / sharing voice memos from iPhone and WhatsApp

I discovered yesterday that you can send an audio message through WhatsApp, I think it’s probably always been possible but I only just noticed. You can also save a copy separately (by emailing it to yourself), and I thought I’d write up how to save / email voice memos from iPhone too, so I added that at the end.

This post was prompted by thinking about Andy Mabbett’s (@pigsonthewing) post about the Wiki Voice Intro Project (#wikivip), while noticing that audio messages could be shared via WhatsApp. WikiVIP is about inviting people who have a Wikipedia page about them to record and share a short audio introduction (“Hi I’m X and have been doing Y since Z”, sort of thing), you can see an example on Ralph Fiennes’ Wikipedia page.


1. Here’s a redacted WhatsApp voice recording (you can make new ones by clicking on the remarkably obvious blue microphone icon at the bottom of the screen which I only spotted yesterday). If you press and hold anywhere inside the pale green box you’ll bring up the options window

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2. “Forward” is the option you’re after, to email it etc

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3. Then it’s the upload icon (bottom right in the picture below) and choose email option as before, the file is in an .opus format – I’ve never handled those before but there are file conversion tools [Zamzar – file converter (no download required)]

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iPhone voice memo app

This lets you record audio for as long as you have enough space on your phone to accommodate it. I’ve recorded several things longer than an hour, though I tend to split them up. Obviously longer recordings are bigger files than shorter ones but you can email any file to yourself [and it might be simpler to use a USB connection and iTunes for the really large ones – iPhone: Transfer Voice Memos from iPhone to Computer] by doing the following.

1. Choose the voice memo you want to share, click on it in the list to bring up the play, upload, edit and delete icons

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2. Click on the upload icon which brings up the ways to share, then choose the email option

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3. The file is an .m4a format (if recorded with an iPhone) but you can use software tools to convert to other formats [NCH Switch MP3 Converter software (download required)] [Zamzar – file converter (no download required)]

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