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How to Recover Deleted Text Messages on Android (Ultimate Guide)

Deleted text messages on Android are recoverable. You can count on FonePaw Android Data Recovery to get the deleted text messages back easily.
author Emily Watson
date Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Life is along with accidents. Things can happen that you accidentally deleted important text messages because of a wrong tap, or find all your messages lost after a system crash, Android update, rooting, etc.

Luckily, that’s not the end of the earth. The good news is, you can still recover the deleted texts from your Android device so long as they are not overwritten by new data. And this post is going to answer all the questions you may have about how to retrieve deleted text messages on Android.

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You May Ask: Can I Retrieve Permanently Deleted Text Messages?

The answer is YES.

Although there is no recycle bin on Android phone (except for some phone models like Samsung Galaxy which does have), nor there is a undo button to undelete text messages on Android, text messages can be recovered after being deleted from Android.

Know About the Principle of Deleted Message Recovery on Android

The truth is, after you delete a text message from your Android phone, the phone doesn't immediately delete the message from its memory space. Instead, it changes the space the deleted messages occupied as "unused". So, when you continue to use the phone and create new data, the new data will overwrite the deleted messages and occupy the space. This gives you a chance to retrieve deleted messages before they are overwritten.

I'm not gonna lie to you, although it is possible to recover deleted text messages from Android, it is not easy to actually get the deleted text messages back

For one thing, the location of the deleted messages is hidden in the phone storage. There is no normal way that enables you to access the folder that contains the deleted messages, even with the best file manager app. Only by using SMS recovery software can you access the deleted Android messages.

For another, if you continue to use the Android phone after deleting the messages, there is a chance that the deleted messages have already been overwritten by new data and become unrecoverable, especially when the messages have been deleted for days or even months.

So, after you lost your Android data, please note that:
  • Stop using the device to prevent the newly written data from overwriting the lost data and affecting data recovery.
  • Try to recover the deleted text as soon as possible.
  • Keep enough battery & prepare for a USB cable (usually needed when you use an SMS recovery program).

Best Solution: Use Android SMS Recovery Software🔥🔥

As mentioned above, although permanently deleted messages can be recovered on Android, it’s hard to do it by ourselves. FonePaw Android Data Recovery is a PC-based application that can find deleted, old text messages from Android phone memory and get them back. It is very easy-to-use: all you need is connect your phone to a computer and follow the on-screen instruction of the program to restore the deleted text messages that you need.

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Brief Introduction of FonePaw Android Data Recovery:
  • Easily recover deleted Android SMS and MMS on Android phone, showing you texts, the name of contacts, and the date;
  • Provide a preview of the deleted text messages so that you can select the needed texts to recover;
  • Save that recovered Android messages in HTML, CSV to better view the deleted messages on the computer;
  • Supports retrieving Android files from Samsung Galaxy (e.g. Galaxy S10/S9/Note9/S8/S7/S6/S5), HTC, Motorola, LG, Sony, Google Nexus, OnePlus, ASUS, Huawei, Xiaomi and more, covering most Android brands;
  • Also can recover WhatsApp messages, photos, call logs, contacts, and other data on an Android phone.
  • Able to retrieve deleted text messages and more data from Android SD card and even SIM card besides the internal memory.

You can click here to see the in-depth review of this program, or just free download FonePaw Android Data Recovery on your Windows PC or Mac and then follow the steps to recover deleted text messages from Android phones.

🎬 Video Tutorial: How to Recover Deleted Messages on Android

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STEP 1. Connect Android to Windows

First of all, launch Android Data Recovery on a computer. Connect your Android device to the computer with a USB cable. The program will immediately detect your Android phone and prompt you to enable USB debugging on the phone if you haven't.

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Connect Android to Windows Computer

It doesn’t matter if you have no knowledge of USB debugging. There will be a clear instruction for you.

Allow for USB Debugging

STEP 2. Choose to Restore Text Messages

Once the computer and the phone are connected, the program will show the below screen and you can choose what kind of data you would like to recover from Android. You can choose to recover deleted messages, photos, WhatsApp messages, contacts, videos from Android or just select all. In this case, choose "Messages" and click "Next".

Select Deleted Messages to Recover

STEP 3. Install FonePaw App

The program will try to scan your Android phone for deleted messages. To gain permission to access your phone data, the FonePaw app needs to be installed on your phone. Therefore, the Android Data Recovery program will ask you to enable Install via USB.

Install FonePaw App

Follow the on-screen instruction to enable the option and tap Install when you see the following pop-up on your Android phone.

Tap Install FonePaw App

STEP 4. Give Permission to Scan Deleted Messages

Once the FonePaw app is installed, you can give permission to Android Data Recovery to access your deleted data. When FonePaw asks you to allow its access to read messages on your phone, tap Allow. Otherwise, the program is unable to find deleted text messages from your Android phone.

Allow to Access Deleted Messages

After you have granted all privileges, click Scan Authorized Files to scan out the deleted messages.

Scan Authorized Files

STEP 5. Preview and Recover Text Messages from Android

The program will first perform a standard scan on your phone. If you can't find the missing messages that you need after the standard scan, click Deep Scan to find more (root required).

Preview Messages After Standard Scan

After the deep scan, deleted messages will be displayed in red font. If you want to look at the deleted SMS only, just tap "Only display the deleted items" to ON.

Click the text messages you want to restore and then press the "Recover" button; the program will recover the messages to PC.

As it is shown in the following screenshot, FonePaw Android Data Recovery saves the deleted messages on your computer in CSV and HTML formats. You can open the CSV file in Microsoft Excel or in a text editor like Notepad. It is small-sized and easy to be printed out.

Recovered Messages on PC

And the HTML file will display the recovered messages in a more organized and clear manner. So if you just want to read the messages, HTML might be a better choice for you.

Recovered Messages in HTML Format

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That’s all about how to retrieve deleted text messages with FonePaw Android Data Recovery. Considering you may still have confusions, we also collect some tips and frequently asked questions and come with detailed answers. Hope this can help you about your Android data recovery.

Extra Tip: How to Find Archived Text Messages on Android

Sometimes, things can also happen that you thought you deleted text messages on your Android phone, but actually you have only archived it and cannot find it (If you swipe a message in the Messages app, it will archive a message according to the default setting, so you will not see it from the Home screen ). So here shows how to find and recover the archived text messages on Android for you to do a double check before the recovery.

Step 1. Open Messages app on Android.

Step 2. Tap the three-dot menu at the top right corner of the interface.

Step 3. Select Archived to view the archived messages on your Android.

Step 4. Long tap the text message you want to unarchive and then tap the up-arrow icon at the top menu to recover.

tips Note:
  • You can also try to send a message to an archived conversion, then the conversation will automatically return to your Home screen.

If there’s no archived text messages from your Android phone, you may need to think about retrieving the deleted ones.

FAQ: Can I Recover Deleted Messages on Android Without Root?

NO. For those who search about questions like “Where are deleted text messages stored on Android?”, we have to make it clear that deleted text messages are stored in a hidden folder of your phone memory, which can't be accessed by regular file explorer. Only after rooting your Android phone can an Android data recovery app gain access to the deleted messages.

Therefore, although there are apps claiming that they can retrieve deleted text messages from Android without rooting, it is very hard to get back your deleted text messages without rooting.

FAQ: Is it Possible to Recover Deleted Text Messages on Android Without Computer?

YES. Perhaps you think that it is complicated to use third-party software to recover deleted text messages from your Android phone. And in fact, there are many message apps or services that can help you better manage text messages. They even provide the option to recover your deleted text messages from the Cloud backups without computers.

Here we'll recommend an ideal choice.

How to restore text messages from Google Drive

If you have backed up your phone to Google Drive, the backup may contain your deleted texts. Go to Settings > Accounts and backup > Backup and restore. Under your Google account, tap Google Account to check if there is a Google Drive backup created before the messages were deleted. If there is an available backup, you may restore the backup and get the deleted messages back. However, by restoring a backup, everything created after the backup will be erased.

Recover Deleted Text Messages via Google Drive

How about recovering text messages with a phone app?

You may be also curious whether you can recover permanently deleted messages with a data recovery phone app. Actually, it may work, but is not recommended, especially when your phone is not rich in free space.

As you need to retrieve deleted messages, the most essential thing is to prevent the deleted data to be overwritten. However, downloading and installing a new app on your Android phone will definitely create new data on your Android internal memory and could potentially overwrite the data you need, and thus erased them permanently before you can eventually and factually retrieve the deleted messages. It’s too risky and that’s also why we would suggest you recover deleted texts on Android with a desktop program like FonePaw Android Data Recovery.

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FAQ: How to Back up Messages on Android Phones

Other than retrieving deleted messages from Android, it shouldn't be neglected that we back up messages to avoid the possible data loss. For the reason that once a message is deleted, there's no perfect solution that will absolutely get the message back.

How long can deleted texts remain before being overwritten?

Actually, we have no way to find out how long it will take before the deleted texts are overwritten - it depends on how much free storage your Android have, how many operations you do after you deleted the data, and even how new your Android system is. However, it is always for sure that the sooner you take action, the greater chance the deleted messages can be recovered.

Once you know that some important text messages are deleted, you should:

  • Put your Android phone in Airplane mode. By turning off network connection on your phone, it prevents the deleted messages from being overwritten by new messages, phone calls or other data.
  • Avoid creating new files on your Android phone. For example, try not to use it to take new photos, download a new file, etc.

Then you'll need to act fast - get an SMS recovery software for your Android phone as soon as possible to recover your deleted text messages before they are overwritten.

Therefore, to protect your text messages from being deleted again, it is a good idea to back up important Android SMS regularly so that you can have an extra copy of the important text messages in case they are deleted by mistake.

How to Back up SMS text messages to Google Drive

As we've mentioned, your Google Drive is a reliable service that even help you find accidentally deleted text messages. But one important premise should be that you need to constantly back up data on your Android phone with Google Drive. And it's fairly simple!

Open Google Drive app, tap Settings > Google backup > SMS messages and enable SMS backup.

How to Back up SMS text messages to PC

Another option is to back up text messages to a computer via some other Android SMS recovery apps or desktop tools.

FonePaw Android Data Backup & Restore allows you to make a backup of your text messages. If some messages are mistakenly deleted from your phone in the future, you can always find the deleted messages on the PC and restore them to your phone.

Back up Android Messages

Above is the whole guide to retrieve deleted messages from Android. If you have any problem, let us know by dropping a comment below!

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