How to Retrieve Deleted Text Messages on iPhone

By Emily Watson, Monday, October 09, 2017

Updated on September 20, 2017. Added with iOS 11 support. 

I was fed up with spam text messages. When I deleted these unwanted messages on my iPhone as a routine, I cleared up all messages by tapping wrong button at the moment I took my attention away. Those deleted messages include two pieces of verification information for group-buying. Any way to retrieve my messages from iPhone 6s?

    • Delete important messages by mistake?

    • iPhone screen crashed when you want to reread a last-minute text message?

    • Want to retrieve message from lost/stolen/ badly damaged iPhone?

    • Lost messages after factory restore or iOS 11/10 update?

FonePaw iPhone Data Recovery is an excellent recovery tool for those guys who delete text messages from their iPhone by mistake. This professional software allows you to retrieve deleted or lost SMS/MMS from iPhone X/8/8 Plus/7/7 Plus/6s/6/5s, iPad, and iPod Touch quickly with/without backup. The recovered messages will be exported as CSV and HTML files on your computer. Generally speaking, there are three ways to help you retrieve deleted text messages on iPhone.

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How to Find Old Text Messages/iMessages on iPhone

You can get a trial version download here and have a try under the instructions below.

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Solution 1: Retrieve Text Messages from iPhone X/8/7/7Plus/SE/6s Plus/6s/6 Plus/6/5s

Step 1: Preserve the Deleted Text Messages

What you should do first is to preserve the deleted text messages from being wiped out by new data, that is to use your iPhone as less as possible after deleting the messages. The truth is, when a messages is first deleted, it just becomes invisible but the data of the text messages still remains in our iPhone until new data generates and overwrites the deleted messages.

Step 2: Install iPhone Data Recovery

iPhone Data Recovery can detect and retrieve the deleted messages to PC. So download the iPhone data recovery and install it. Then, run it on the computer as well as connect your iPhone with computer.

Analyze Your iPhone Device

Step 3: Scan Your iPhone

After clicking "Start Scan" button, the program will start to scan your iPhone for deleted messages.

Scan the iPhone Quickly

Step 3: Preview Text Messages from iPhone

After scanning, all your iPhone text messages, including the lost ones and the existing ones are listed in category. You are allowed to preview them one by one. You can choose "Messages" and "Messages Attachments" only to preview the specific content to save time.

Preview the Deleted Message Attachment

Step 4: Recover Deleted Text Messages from iPhone

Mark down all text messages you want to get back in previewing, click "Recover" button in the bottom of the right corner to retrieve them. The SMS will be saved as HTML and CSV files on your computer and you can find that photos in MMS will be save in an attachment folder.

Retrieve the Deleted Message from iPhone

Solution 2: Retrieve Text Messages via iTunes

In this solution, you need to assure that:

  • You have installed iTunes on the PC;

  • You have backed up your iPhone data to iTunes on the same PC previously.

Normally, we don't want to restore the whole iTunes backup just to retrieve several messages since the data not included in the backup will be removed from our iPhone after restoring. Thus we need iPhone Data Recovery, which enables us to extract only the deleted messages from iTunes backup.

Step 1: Choose "Recover from iTunes Backup File"

Launch the program and choose "Recover from iTunes Backup File" on the left side bar of the window. All iTunes backup files will be found and displayed automatically.

Recover Messages from iTunes Backups

Step 2: Start to Scan

Select the one you want from all iTunes backup files which have been found and click "Start Scan" button to extract it.

Step 3: Preview Deleted Text Messages from iTunes

After scanning, lost data files will be shown orderly. You can choose "Messages" or "Messages Attachments", preview them one by one, and select those messages you want back at last.

Preview the Messages of iTunes Backups.png

Step 4: Recover the Deleted Text Messages from iPhone

After choosing all you want, click "Recover" on the lower-right corner of the interface. And wait till the process ends. It needs seconds or minutes.

Solution 3: Recover Text Messages from iCloud

Step 1: Sign in iCloud

Please launch the program and select "Recover from iCloud Backup File". Sign in your account with your Apple ID and password. To be able to retrieve data from an iCloud backup, you must have previously set up iCloud as a means of backing up iOS data.

Sign in iCloud First

Step 2: Download Your iCloud Backup

After entering the program, you will see the backup files in your iCloud backup account automatically. Choose the backup you want to recover by clicking "Download" button on the right side of the table. The whole progress of downloading iCloud backup is decided by the amount of your data.

Recover iPhone Data from iCloud Backups

Step 3: Download Your iCloud Backup

After downloading, the software will scan the data found in the backup spontaneously. Please click "Messages" item to preview all the deleted text messages.

The Process of Scan the iCloud Backups

Step 4: Restore Text Messages from iCloud

Click "Recover" button to retrieve your deleted messages on your computer. Now, you must know how to retrieve deleted text from iPhone.

Retrieve iPhone Lost Messages from iCloud Backups


To prepare for data deletion accident, you should:  

  • Create a backup of your iPhone to PC, iTunes or iCloud monthly;  

  • Install FonePaw iPhone Data Recovery on your computer. The program can not only help you to retrieve deleted text messages, but also help you recover your previous SMS, call history, notes, calendar, photos, videos, bookmarks, and so on. It is powerful, simple, and capable of saving the deleted or lost data.

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