How to Retrieve Deleted Text Messages from an iPhone: A Step-by-Step Guide

Accidentally deleted a crucial text message and now you’re in a panic? Fear not! Retrieving deleted text messages from an iPhone is possible through iCloud backups, iTunes backups, or third-party software. With a few steps, you might just be able to recover that all-important message.

After following the steps to retrieve your deleted text messages, you can breathe a sigh of relief as you hopefully recover your lost data and get back to communicating without missing a beat.


We’ve all been there – the accidental swipe or tap that leads to deleting an important text message. It’s a modern-day nightmare, especially when the message could be a sentimental keepsake or contains critical information. But before you let panic set in, know that all may not be lost. If you’re an iPhone user, there are ways to retrieve those deleted messages.

This topic is particularly important for individuals who rely heavily on text messages for personal or professional communication. In an era where much of our lives are tied to our digital devices, losing vital information can be more than just inconvenient. It can affect relationships, work productivity, or even legal matters. That’s why knowing how to retrieve deleted text messages on an iPhone is a valuable skill. Whether it’s for peace of mind or in times of crisis, understanding the recovery process can save the day for anyone in the Apple ecosystem.

How to Retrieve Deleted Text Messages from an iPhone

Before diving into the steps, it’s crucial to understand that success in retrieving deleted text messages can depend on several factors, such as whether you have a backup in place and how much time has passed since the deletion.

Step 1: Check Your iCloud Backup

First, check if you have an iCloud backup that predates the message deletion.

iCloud automatically backs up your iPhone daily when connected to Wi-Fi, plugged in, and locked. If you have this feature enabled, there’s a good chance your deleted messages are in the cloud. To check, go to Settings > [Your Name] > iCloud > Manage Storage > Backups. Here, you can see your latest backups and their respective dates.

Step 2: Restore from iCloud Backup

If a suitable backup exists, reset your iPhone to factory settings and choose to restore from the iCloud backup during the setup process.

This step requires you to erase all contents on your iPhone to access the backup, which means you’ll lose any data generated after the backup was made. Go to Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings, then follow the on-screen steps to restore your device from iCloud.

Step 3: Use iTunes Backup

If iCloud is not an option, connect your iPhone to a computer with iTunes and check for an available backup.

iTunes, or Finder on macOS Catalina and later, can also be used to back up and restore your iPhone. Connect your device, open iTunes or Finder, select your iPhone, and click ‘Restore Backup’ if you have an older backup that may contain your deleted messages.

Step 4: Use Third-Party Software

Consider using third-party software options that can scan your iPhone for deleted messages.

Several reliable third-party applications can help retrieve deleted text messages without needing a backup. They often come at a cost, but if the information is invaluable, it could be worth the investment. Some reputable options include EaseUS MobiSaver, Dr.fone, and Tenorshare UltData.


Recovery of Important MessagesBeing able to retrieve deleted text messages can be crucial if they contain important information that you cannot afford to lose.
Peace of MindKnowing that there are ways to recover lost data can provide significant relief in stressful situations.
Avoidance of Potential ConsequencesRecovering a deleted message can prevent potential negative consequences in personal or professional settings.


Potential Data LossRestoring from an iCloud or iTunes backup may lead to the loss of any data generated after the backup date.
Time-ConsumingThe process can be time-consuming, especially if you have to reset your iPhone to factory settings.
Cost of Third-Party SoftwareWhile effective, third-party recovery software often comes at a price, which may not be feasible for everyone.

Additional Information

Remember that acting quickly is key when it comes to recovering deleted text messages. The longer you wait, the higher the chance that the deleted data will be overwritten by new data, making recovery more difficult or even impossible. Always make sure to regularly back up your phone to either iCloud or iTunes to safeguard your data against accidental loss.

Another tip is to enable the ‘Messages in iCloud’ feature, which syncs your text messages across all your devices. This can be a lifesaver in situations where you’ve deleted a message from your iPhone, but it’s still available on another device.

Lastly, be cautious when using third-party software. Ensure you’re downloading from a trusted source to avoid malware or other security risks. And always read user reviews and check ratings before making a purchase.


  1. Check for an iCloud backup.
  2. Restore from the iCloud backup if available.
  3. Use iTunes or Finder backup for restoration.
  4. Consider third-party recovery software.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I don’t have a backup?

If you don’t have a backup, your best option would be to use third-party recovery software to try and retrieve the deleted messages directly from your iPhone’s storage.

Can I recover messages deleted a long time ago?

The possibility of recovering old deleted messages decreases with time, especially if new data has been added to your iPhone, which can overwrite the deleted messages.

Is it possible to retrieve deleted messages without erasing my iPhone?

If you’re using third-party software, it’s possible. However, using iCloud or iTunes backups for recovery will require resetting your iPhone to factory settings.

Are third-party recovery tools safe?

Most reputable recovery tools are safe to use, but always do your due diligence to ensure you’re using a trusted software.

Can I recover texts from a broken iPhone?

If the iPhone is still recognized by a computer and you’ve previously backed up your messages, you may be able to recover them using iTunes or third-party software.


Deleting important text messages can be a stressful ordeal, but knowing how to retrieve deleted text messages from an iPhone can ease that stress. Whether it’s through iCloud, iTunes, or third-party software, there are multiple avenues to explore for recovery. Just remember to act swiftly and keep regular backups to increase your chances of success.

For anyone who’s faced this issue, I hope this guide has shed some light on the steps you can take to recover your precious messages. Keep this knowledge in your back pocket – you never know when it might come in handy. And always remember, prevention is better than cure, so make backing up your iPhone a regular habit.