How to mark messages as unread on an iPhone with iOS 16

  • Starting with iOS 16, Apple allows you to mark text messages as unread in the Messages app on your iPhone.
  • You can mark a conversation as unread by swiping it to the right or by touching and holding the conversation, then choosing Mark as unread from the quick actions.
  • The Filters view now allows you to view only your unread messages.

If you’re a long-time iPhone user, you probably know the frustration of reading a text message and then forgetting to reply to it.

Apple fixed that annoyance in iOS 16 by adding the ability to mark messages as unread on iPhone. Now, if you don’t have time to reply right away, you can mark it as unread as a reminder to come back to it later. Even better, you can change the view in the Messages app to see only unread messages.

How to mark messages as unread on iPhone

There are several ways to mark messages as unread. Launch the Messages app and go to the list of conversations. Once you’re there, you can do whatever method works best for you:

  • play a conversation. Find the conversation you want to mark as unread. Touch and hold the chat until the message preview window appears, and then touch Mark as unread from the list of quick actions at the bottom of the screen.

The Messages app on iPhone with the "Mark as unread" highlighted option.

When you touch and hold a conversation, the option to mark it as unread appears at the bottom of the screen.

Dave Johnson/Insider


  • Swipe right in a conversation. Swipe a conversation to the right. If you swipe all the way, it will automatically be marked as unread; if you slide it partially, release it and touch the Mark as unread left button.

The Messages app on iPhone with an arrow pointing to the conversation options panel.

Swipe right on a conversation to reset it to unread.

Dave Johnson/Insider


  • Select multiple conversations at once. tap on the three point menu at the top of the screen and choose Select Messages from the dropdown menu. Touch to select each message you want to mark as unread, then touch Unread at the bottom of the screen.

The Messages app on iPhone with multiple conversations selected and an arrow pointing to the "Unread" option at the bottom.

You can select multiple conversations and mark them all as unread.

Dave Johnson/Insider


How to find all unread messages at once

You can filter the conversations in the Messages app to only your unread chats. In the list of conversations, touch filters at the top left. Then, on the Filters page, tap Unread Messages. Here, he will see all the unread messages from him, both the messages that he has not read and the messages that he manually marked as unread.

The Messages app on iPhone with "Unread Messages" highlighted.

If you have a lot of unread messages, you may want to filter your view and only see unread messages.

Dave Johnson/Insider


Leave a Comment