Recovery & Repair
Data Transfer

Where Are Text Messages Stored on Android Phone [2023 Updated]

author Emily Watson
date Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Sometimes you may need to save your Android text messages to a computer so that you can print them out or copy the messages to your email. Or you will lose your precious texts and need to recover them. But you may ask: Where are text messages stored on Android phones? Are the deleted text messages recoverable or not?

Don't worry. This article will guide you to find the location of your Android SMS/MMS. And you can also learn how to back up messages on Android to the computer and retrieve deleted text messages.

Where Are Messages Stored on Android

Where Are Text Messages Stored on Android?

Before you try recovering or saving your Android text messages, the first thing you should know is where text messages are stored on your phone. In general, Android SMS are stored in a database in the data folder located in the internal memory of the Android phone. However, the location of the database might vary from phone to phone. You can find the texts in the following locations according to your Android version.

Android 4.3 or older:


Android 4.4 or later:


Android 7.0 and above:


tips Note:
  • Android text messages are stored in the SQLite database folder which you can only find on a rooted phone. Also, it is not in a readable format, you need to view it with an SQLite viewer.

Tip: Where are MMS pictures stored on Android?

If you have manually saved the pictures or audio that are contained in your received MMS, then you can find them in the Gallery app on your Android device. If not, you can only view your MMS photos in the Messages app.

How to Save Messages on Android to Computer Folder

You may receive many precious text messages and you want to keep them forever. However, saving all the messages severally means a lot of work for you. Therefore, it is wise to choose a better and more efficient way to back up your Android SMS and then transfer it to your computer. FonePaw DoTrans can be of great help. It enables you to save everything on your Android mobile to computer (It's currently only available for Windows. Mac users could turn to FonePaw Android Data Recovery). With a few simple clicks, you can effortlessly back up all your text messages to a computer folder. You can also preview the messages before backing up and transferring them between devices.

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Step 1: Connect Android to the computer

Install and launch the program on your PC. Then connect your Android phone to the PC and enable USB debugging on the device. The program will detect your Android phone and show the following screen.

Android Data Backup & Restore Homepage

Step 2: Cho0se a Data Type and Start to Save SMS

On the left side, you can choose 5 types of data to export. If so, just select "Messages". DoTrans will instantly scan your SMS / MMS messages on your mobile phone.

tips Note:
  • For higher Android OS, the program will request access to your SMS or MMS app. Tap Allow on your phone to allow the process to continue.

Step 3: Start the SMS backup

After the quick scan, DoTrans will show all the messages on your Android. Select the ones you want or just check the "Select All" option. Then click the export button above. Choose a format and location for your SMS messages. And the transfer will start automatically.

Select Data Type

Note: If your text messages are important and you don't want anyone else to access them, here I suggest using the encrypted backup option. Just click "Encrypted Backup" to add a password and memorize it well.

When the progress bar reaches 100%, the messages on your Android phone have been successfully saved to the computer. You can restore the text messages from the backup and save the messages in HTML or CSV format.

Export Message from Android in HTML or CSV

How to Find and Recover Deleted Text Messages on Android

If you delete the texts accidentally and want to recover them, you should know that, unlike the existing messages, deleted ones cannot be found in the folder, because files that have been marked as deleted are hidden and can be overwritten at any time.

Here we recommend you try FonePaw Android Data Recovery to recover those deleted SMS text messages and MMS. It just needs some simple steps.

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Step 1: Install and run the program. Then, connect your phone to the computer and enable USB debugging.

Enable USB Debugging

Step 2: When your phone is detected successfully, choose "Messages" and click "Next" to scan. To proceed with scanning and the recovery, you need to follow the on-screen instructions to install FonePaw App on your Android and authorize it to aceess your deleted files. This app will be automatically removed when the recovery is completed, so do not worry.

Select Android Messages

Step 3: After scanning, you can see the deleted text messages in detail. Preview them and mark down the messages you need, then click "Recover" to retrieve them back to the computer.

Find Deleted Text Messages on Android

You can view your deleted messages on your computer now.

Watch our tutorial video: How to Recover Deleted Text Messages from Android


Now, you've learned that your text messages are stored in a hidden SQLite database folder in the Android internal memory. You can use FonePaw DoTrans to back up your important messages to the computer. And you can use FonePaw Android Data Recovery to recover deleted text messages on Android. Hit the download button and have a try!

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