Even though social networking apps have become quite popular, text messages still remain a major part of the communication channel. Keeping text messages especially when they contain crucial information is of paramount importance. But it happens easily to us all that we can sometimes lose these messages. Accidental deletion or upgrading to the latest operation system (iOS 12/13) could be the causes.
If you, unfortunately, happen to have lost some of your text messages and want them back, the first question you may ask yourself is whether it is possible to get messages back. This article will show you 3 easy ways to retrieve deleted text messages from iPhone 11/XS (Max)/XR/X/8/7/6s/6/5s/5/4 for your reference. Let’s find out.
- Q: Can I Recover Deleted Text Messages on iPhone?
- Method 1: Retrieve Deleted iPhone Text Messages without Backup
- Method 2: Retrieve Deleted iPhone Text Messages from iCloud Backup
- Method 3: Retrieve Deleted iPhone Text Messages from iTunes Backup
- Tip: Fully Restore from iTunes/iCloud Backup vs Recover with Third-Party Software
Q: Can I Recover Deleted Text Messages on iPhone?
One common thing we have heard from iPhone users is “I just deleted text messages, can I retrieve them from my iPhone?”. The answer is yes. As long as the messages are not overwritten yet, you can always get them back. And if you have an iTunes/iCloud backup, the chance to recover is even greater.
What most users don't know is, the iPhone saves all data in an SQLite database. When you delete your text messages, they are just moved from the “Allocated” category to “Unallocated” category, and the actual data is still available. However, if you create new data, the “Unallocated” category will get occupied first and this will overwrite the deleted information. If the deleted messages are yet to be overwritten, you can use a third-party tool to access the SQLite database and retrieve this data.
If you had already used either iTunes or iCloud to backup your device, you can restore the data to your device. The biggest disadvantage is, however, you cannot view the backup file before the restore. And if the deleted messages are not included in the backup file, it's possible that you lose other data as well. To solve this problem, we will also show you how to extract and view messages from iTunes/iCloud backup and later restore to your device.
If you don't have any backups and want to recover messages directly from iPhone, it's important to stop using your iPhone as it may generate new data and overwrite the deleted data.
1. Retrieve iPhone Deleted Messages without Backup
Many users haven't realized the importance of backup, and when data loss occurs, there are often no backup files available. Also, some users don't want to take the risk of losing other data after restore. That's why we bring out iMyFone D-Back to solve your troubles.
As we've discussed above, when you delete messages from iPhone, they won't disappear right away. With the right tool like iMyFone D-Back, you can get access to the deleted data and bring them back.
Why Choose iMyFone D-Back
- Retrieve deleted text messages on iPhone no matter you have backups or not.
- Advanced technology with highest data recovery rate in the market.
- No matter how you lost the messages, D-Back can recover them easily.
- It's possible to recover messages deleted long time ago using iMyFone D-Back.
- The preview and selective restore feature can help you recover messages that matter to you.
- Third-party app messages like WhatsApp message, Viber message, WeChat Message can also be retrieved.
- Supports almost all iOS devices running different iOS version, including iPhone 11/XS/XS Max/XR/X/8 and iOS 13/12/11/10/9.
The following part will walk you through the process of iPhone messages recovery. Make sure you have downloaded and installed iMyFone D-Back in advance.
Step 1. Select iPhone Text Message and How You Lost Them
Firstly, launch D-Back it will ask you to choose how you lost the file and select the file type you need to recover. By specifying these details, the scan and search time can be greatly reduced. If there is no available backup, choose "Recover from iOS Device" to move on.
Step 2. Connect Device and Start Scanning
Then, connect your device using the USB cable and on the next page, tick Message only and click on "Scan" button to search for the lost files.
Step 3. Preview and Recover iPhone Text Message
Once scan is completed, your text messages will be clearly listed. You can enable the button "Only show the deleted" to view the deleted message. If you find the text message you need, click "Recover" and choose a location on your computer as the recovery path.
- To retrieve messages directly from iPhone, please ensure that your iPhone can be recognized by the computer.
- You can also use iMyFone D-Back to recover deleted text messages from your iTunes or iCloud backup file to the computer.
- The free trial version is available for both Windows and Mac users. You can download it to scan your device and check whether your deleted text messages can be recovered.
2. Retrieve Deleted iPhone Text Messages from iCloud Backup
If you have turned on iCloud on your device, then it is likely that you could retrieve the messages by restoring the iCloud backup. Here's how to do it.
- Go to Settings > General > Reset,choose Erase All Content and Settings.
- Follow the instructions on the Setup assistant and then select "Restore from an iCloud Backup".
- Choose the iCloud backup including the deleted text messages and wait for the restoration process to complete.
If you are not sure the lost/deleted messages are backed up with iCloud, you can use iiMyFone D-Back to extract and recover from iCloud Backup. Just select "Recover from iCloud Backup" from the left menu and login your iCloud account, you will be able to access iCloud backup file and recover them selectively.
3. Retrieve iPhone Deleted Text Messages from iTunes Backup
Before you restore an iTunes backup, remember that new data that was not included in the backup will be overwritten. Therefore, backup existing data before restoring the deleted messages. Here's how to restore an iTunes backup.
- After you connect your iPhone to the computer on which you perform the backup, iTunes will open, and click the iPhone icon in top left corner of the window.
- Click on Restore Backup... to choose the exact iTunes backup. After restoring, you will see the deleted messages back on your iPhone.
But besides the disadvantage of overwriting the existing data, iTunes cannot read your text messages before restoration, which means you have to restore all the messages and data you don't need. And for people who don't back up their data often, or who delete their text messages after last backup, in this situation you can use "Recover from iTunes backup" of iMyFone D-Back to preview and extract messages from iTunes selectively.
5. Restore from iTunes/iCloud Backup vs Recover with D-Back
|via D-Back||via iCloud Restore||via iTunes Restore||When to use||No backups available;
Don't want full restore
|Messages are backed up to iCloud||Messages are backed up to iTunes|
|Success rate||High||Depends on how many messages are backed up||Depends on how many messages are backed up|
No data loss or overwrite;
High recovery rate
No need of computer
|Cons||It costs||Cannot preview;
Fully restore all files;
Data overwrite on the device
Fully restore all files;
Data overwrite on the device;
Unknown iTunes errors
After going through this article, you will know how to see deleted texts and also how to retrieve deleted texts on iPhone. We sincerely hope that you recover all your deleted/lost text messages using the above methods. iMyFone D-Back may not be 100% free. However, a free trial version is available and this trial version allows you to find and preview your deleted data. If the lost messages are there, it's a certain thing that the full version will have the ability to recover them. If you encounter any further problems, feel free to contact us or leave a comment below.