By Kelsey twitter / Last update April 4, 2023

How to Recover Permanently Deleted Text Messages on iPhone?

It's a common scenario that many of us have experienced: you check your iPhone messages only to realize that you accidentally deleted a few important ones. This can cause panic and uncertainty, as you may not know what to do next.

However, there are solutions available to recover deleted text messages on iPhone without backup. Whether you have a backup or not, this guide can help you choose the best method to recover your lost messages.

If you're worried about overwriting your data during the recovery process, don't be. AOMEI Data Recovery for iOS is a reliable and free iPhone data recovery software that can help you restore deleted text messages on iPhone 14/13/12/11 (iOS 16 supported). Not only can it recover data from official iTunes and iCloud, but it also allows you to preview the data before recovery to ensure accuracy. Download AOMEI Data Recovery for iOS for free now and recover your lost messages with ease.

Part 1. Can You Retrieve Deleted Text Messages on iPhone with/without Backup?

Whether you can recover deleted messages without backup depends on the circumstances. Please find the method according to the different scenarios below.


Scenario 1. When You Have a Backup

If you have previously backed up your device using iTunes or iCloud, you can follow the steps in Part 2 to restore your text messages for free. However, keep in mind that you won't be able to preview the backup file before restoring, and if the deleted messages are not included in the backup file, this may not be the best solution.

Scenario 2. When You Have No Backup

If you accidentally delete text messages from your iPhone and don't have any backup files to restore them. Don't worry, it is possible to recover those messages using a third-party tool, as long as the messages haven't been overwritten yet. This is because the iPhone saves all data in an SQLite database. 

And when you delete text messages, they are simply moved from the "Allocated" category to the "Unallocated" category, leaving the actual data intact. However, if you create new data, the "Unallocated" category will be used first, overwriting the deleted information. If the messages haven't been overwritten yet, you can use a third-party tool to access the SQLite database and retrieve the data without a backup. This is where the solution in Part 3 comes in handy.

Scenario 3. When You Have No Backup and the Deleted Text Messages Are Replaced

If the deleted text messages have been replaced, you will need to seek help from your cellular carrier as they may have stored the messages on their server. To prevent this situation, stop using your iPhone immediately and turn off the network.

You can try to retrieve the messages from iCloud by going to Settings > your name > iCloud > toggling "Messages" off and on again, and choosing "Downloading Messages from iCloud" from the pop-up notification.

However, if the messages have already been synced to iCloud, this method may not work. In such a scenario, refer to the appropriate solution based on your specific situation.

Part 2. Retrieve Deleted Text Messages on iPhone for Free

If you've lost text messages on your iPhone, there are ways to recover them, such as by restoring from an iCloud or iTunes backup. This solution is particularly useful for scenario 1, where you have a backup available. Here's how to retrieve deleted text messages on iPhone using iTunes backup:

Way 1. Recover Deleted Text Messages on iPhone without iCloud by Restoring iTunes Backup

iTunes is an official backup method for iPhones, and can be used to recover deleted text messages. To do so, follow these steps:

Step 1. Connect your iPhone to your computer and launch iTunes.

Step 2. Click on the device icon once it appears in iTunes.

Click the Device Icon

Step 3. In the Backups option, click "Restore Backup" to choose the most relevant backup, and then click "Restore".

Resote Backup

When you click "Restore Backup", all iMessages will be replaced by the text messages in the backup, and you may lose any current data on your device.
If you're not sure if the iTunes backup file you select contains the deleted text messages, you can use Option 2 from Part 3 to preview your iTunes backup first and avoid selecting the wrong backup.

Way 2. Retrieve Deleted Text Messages on iPhone from iCloud Backup

If you accidentally delete text messages from your iPhone, you can still recover them without your computer by using an iCloud backup. Here's how to get back deleted text messages on iPhone:

Step 1. On your iPhone, go to Settings > General > Transfer or Reset iPhone, and choose "Erase All Content and Settings".

Erase All Content and Settings

Step 2. Your iPhone will reboot, and from the Apps & Data screen, select "Restore from iCloud Backup". Sign in to iCloud and choose "Choose Backup" from the list of available backups.

Recover from iCloud Backup

Be aware that all settings and contents will be erased from your iPhone during this process, so it's better to back up your device first.
Keep in mind that iCloud only provides 5GB of free storage, so it may not be able to back up deleted text messages if your iCloud storage is full.
Similar to restoring from an iTunes backup, you won't be able to preview the content in the iCloud backup file.

Part 3. Recover Permanently Deleted Text Messages on iPhone by Data Recovery

If you find yourself stuck in Scenario 2, or simply don't want to restore an entire backup to your device, AOMEI Data Recovery for iOS is an excellent solution for recovering permanently deleted text messages from your iPhone. This tool is capable of retrieving deleted text messages with or without a backup, and supports iPhone models such as iPhone 14, 13, 12, and 11.

AOMEI Data Recovery for iOS uses advanced technology to ensure a high success rate for text message recovery. Developed by AOMEI, the software has received recommendations from Macworld, Payetteforward, Makeuseof, and other reputable sources.

Download Software iOS 10 and later
Secure Download

Here's how to use AOMEI Data Recovery for iOS to scan your device and recover deleted text messages:

Step 1. Download and install AOMEI Data Recovery for iOS on your computer. Connect your iPhone to the computer.

Connect iOS Device

Step 2. From the next window, select "Messages" and click "Scan Now" to start scanning your phone for deleted text messages.

Click Scan Now

Step 3. After a few minutes, you will see all the recoverable messages on the next screen. Select the ones you want to recover and click "Recover". The program will prompt you to choose a folder to store the text messages you need.

Select Contacts and Click Recover

Part 1. Frequently Asked Questions about iPhone Messages Recovery

1. Are permanently deleted texts gone forever?

Deleted text messages on your iPhone are not gone forever. When a file is deleted, the operating system unallocated the space that was previously occupied by that file, making it available for reuse. If no data is saved in that space, the deleted file remains recoverable. However, if you save more data and overwrite the unallocated space, you will need a recovery tool to retrieve your files. It's important to avoid saving further data when trying to recover deleted data.

2. How long can text messages be found?

The chances of recovering deleted text messages are not determined by the time when they were deleted, but rather by whether they have been overwritten. Therefore, it's crucial to stop using your device after losing data. Keep in mind that the messages you just deleted may not be defined as abandoned data by your device. As a result, some data recovery tools may not be able to scan them immediately, but they may still be recoverable with later attempts.

3. How can I retrieve deleted messages from my iPhone without a computer?

Aside from restoring from iCloud or iTunes, there is a third-party software option for retrieving text messages on your iPhone without a computer. While there is no completely free iPhone data recovery software, most of them offer free trial versions. You may want to try one of these options to see if it works for your situation.

4. Can you restore only messages from iCloud?

Restoring from an iCloud backup does not allow for selective retrieval of deleted text messages. To recover specific text messages, you will need to use data recovery tools.

Wrapping Things up

There are various methods to recover deleted text messages on iPhone without backup. It's best to regularly back up your device, as this increases the chances of recovering your deleted texts. If you're worried about losing text messages on your iPhone without a backup, you can try downloading AOMEI Data Recovery for iOS for free.

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