How to Find and Restore Deleted Text Message from iPhone for Beginners

"I just deleted an important text message on my iPhone, how can I get it back?" No matter you delete your iPhone text messages regularly or recently mass clean them up to free up space, you should always take care to back up the messages that you still need to read later. However, if you delete them by mistake, don't panic since there are a few methods to recover deleted text messages on your iPhone.

Retrieve Deleted Text Messages on iPhoneRetrieve Deleted Text Messages iPhone

Part 1: How to Recover Delete iPhone Text Message without Backup

According to recent research, the majority of users do not have the habit of backup. Can you recover deleted iPhone text message without backup? The answer is Apeaksoft iPhone Data Recovery. It can get back the lost messages if you act quickly.

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How to Recover Deleted Text Message from iPhone without Backup

Step 1Scan iPhone

Install the iPhone text message recovery tool on your PC or Mac and launch it when you deleted important SMS or MMS. Plug your iPhone into the same machine with a Lightning cable. Follow the on-screen instructions to trust the computer, click the Next button, and hit the Start Scan button.

Tip : For iOS 13 or later, enter the passcode to permit the connection.
Trust the ComputerStep 2Preview text messages

After iPhone scanning, you will be taken to the preview window. Tick the checkbox next to Messages and Message Attachments under Message & Contacts on the left sidebar. Next, pull down the menu on the top of the window and choose Show Deleted Only. Now, you will see all deleted text messages on your iPhone are recoverable. 

Preview Deleted Text MessagesStep 3Retrieve deleted text messages on iPhone

Select the conversations or messages that you want to restore from your iPhone, and click the Recover button. When prompted, set a specific folder to save the messages, and hit the Recover button again. A few seconds later, you will get the deleted iPhone text messages back.

Select Save Path

Part 2: Traditional Ways to Retrieve Text Messages on iPhone

In addition to third-party tools, you can see and recover deleted text messages on your iPhone with the iCloud backup, iTunes backup, or Mac Finder if you have set up the automatic backup features.

Way 1: How to Recover iPhone Deleted Messages with iTunes Backup

If you backed up your iPhone with iTunes, you can recover deleted messages on your iPhone from the backup easily. Bear in mind that the backup will overwrite all data on your iOS device.

Step 1Connect your iPhone to your computer, and run the latest version of iTunes.

Step 2 Click the iPhone icon at the top left corner. Once iTunes detects your device, the icon will become available.

Recover SMS iTunes

Step 3Go to the Summary section from the left menu bar, and click the Restore Backup button in the Backups pane. When prompted, select the backup file that may contain the deleted message. 

When it is done, chances are that your texts go back to your iPhone. If not, try other ways.

Further Reading:

What does iTunes Backup

Change iTunes Backup Location

Way 2: How to Get back Deleted iPhone Messages by iCloud Backup

iCloud is the cloud-based feature to back up iPhone. Apple gives 5GB of free storage to each customer, but you can expand it with subscription plans. If you have turned on iCloud backup, here are the steps to get back deleted messages on your iPhone.

Step 1Run the Settings app from your home screen. Tap on your profile, go to Reset, and tap Erase All Content and Settings. Enter your passcode to authorize it.

Reset iPhone

Step 2 Wait for your iPhone to power off and turn back again. Then set up the iOS device as a new iPhone until you reach the Apps & Data screen.

Reset iCloud

Step 3 Select Restore from iCloud Backup on the list, sign in to your iCloud account and choose the proper backup to get deleted messages back to your iPhone.

Note: If you do not want to reset your iPhone, go to the Settings app, go to the iCloud tab, and toggle off the Messages option. Confirm it, and tap Keep on My iPhone. Next, turn Messages back on, and tap the Merge button when prompted. Turning Messages off and on will download and merge the messages on iPhone.

Way 3: How to Retrieve Deleted Messages on iPhone via Mac Finder

Finder backup is the new feature on macOS Catalina 10.15 and above. It enables you to back up an iPhone to a Mac computer or laptop with a USB cable or wirelessly. Of course, you can retrieve deleted messages on your iPhone from the Finder backup.

Step 1Connect your iPhone to your Mac with a Lightning cable or Wi-Fi network.

Step 2Start the Finder app from the Dock bar, and click your iPhone name on the left sidebar.

Recover Finder

Step 3Head to the General tab, and click the Restore Backup button. If the backup is encrypted, enter your password. Then you can select the backup file from the Backup menu, and click the Restore button.

Note: Much like iTunes, the Finder backup will overwrite all data on your iPhone during the process.

Way 4: How to Restore Deleted Texts from Contact Service Provider

The last but not least way to restore deleted texts on your iPhone is by contacting your service provider. It stores all your messages and phone calls on its server.

Carrier iPhone

Step 1Open the Settings app on iPhone, tap the General option, and choose About.

Step 2Scroll down and you will find your carrier. Visit your carrier's website to find the contact information.

Step 3Next, make a phone call or visit a nearby store to ask if they can assist in recovering the deleted texts without iCloud backup or iTunes backup.

Part 3: FAQs about Retrieving Deleted iPhone Text Message

Are deleted texts removed from iPhone?

No. The deleted text messages are not physically removed from your memory immediately. Instead, they are just inaccessible and their storage space is marked for potential reuse until they are overwritten by new data.

Do deleted messages stay on iMessage?

Deleting a message on the iMessage app only affects the local copy. Once a message has been delivered, you cannot control it on the recipient's device. Moreover, the iMessages will be synced to your Mac through iCloud too.

Are text messages saved in iCloud?

Yes, iCloud backs up both text messages and iMessages if you have enabled the Messages backup feature in the Settings app. iCloud also requires an internet connection to finish backup.


This guide has demonstrated five ways to retrieve deleted text messages on iPhone with or without backup. The iCloud, Finder, or iTunes backup can help you get back lost data quickly if you have set them up. Even if you do not have backed up, you can contact your carrier service provider or use Apeaksoft iPhone Data Recovery to find the desired texts easily. If you have other questions about this topic, please feel free to leave a message below this post.

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