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The Top 18 Tools for Retrieving Your Lost Text Messages

Whether you dropped your phone a little too hard in the parking lot, were updating its operating system and something went amiss, or heck maybe you deleted all your texts in a drunken rageWhatever the reason, your worst-case scenario has now become a reality…

Your text messages are gone...

Can you recover deleted text messages? 

Is it even possible?

The short answer is yes. Thanks to the advent of text-recovery software. Now you have a host of options to retrieve lost text messages, whether they were sent via SMS or other services.

But determining which one is right for you can take some research. SMS recovery software programs are sprouting like weeds, and they come at a variety of price points (not to mention effectiveness levels).

To help you figure out which tools can help you, we’re highlighting a few popular recovery options, and we’ve also rounded up some other programs that may meet your needs. You’re well on your way to getting every last one of those heart-eye emojis back.

Best Tools For Recovering Text Messages on iPhone and Android

Tenorshare Ultdata

  • Official product description: Tenorshare UltData enables you to get back messages (carrier SMS and iMessage) that you deleted or lost due to accidental deletion, jailbreak, factory settings, iPhone damage and other data-loss scenarios. It offers three different recovery options (from iOS device, iCloud backup files, or iTunes backup files), so you have a big chance to recover your lost messages even without backup in iTunes/iCloud.
  • Price:
    • $59.95 for a one-year subscription on a Mac.
    • $49.95 for a one-year subscription on a PC.
    • Family packs and unlimited licenses are also available.
  • Compatible phones: iOS, but the software package is designed for both Mac and Windows computers.
  • Sample review: “With Tenorshare, which is currently available at half price, you have all the freedom you want to browse your backups and pick and choose exactly which files you want to keep and which ones you are happy to lose. There is even a free trial.”
  • Our take: Tenorshare forces you to buy a long-term solution when all you might want is a one-time fix. But the subscription does include a whole suite of other tech products too, which might make the price more palatable for you.





  • Official product description: dr.fone toolkit - iPhone Data Recovery is a professional iPhone recovery software that tells you how to retrieve deleted messages on iPhone. It offers you three options to recover deleted text messages: recover messages directly on iPhone, extract iPhone messages from iTunes backup and retrieve iPhone text messages from iCloud backup. Android Data Recovery is one of a kind, all in one data recover software that enables user to recover any kind of deleted data almost instantly. Recover Android data by scanning your Android phone & tablet directly.
  • Price:
    • $59.95 for Android
    • $79.95 for iOS
  • Compatible phones: iPhone and Android
  • Sample review: “The trial version I used first worked very well; that's why I purchased the $79.00 license and I am very happy with the product.”
  • Our take: dr.fone is one of the most trusted names in data recovery, and great reviews indicate that it can be a solid option for both iPhone and Android users.





  • Official product description: The program can help you freely transfer files like contacts, apps, photos, music, video, etc. between iPhone, Android, Nokia (Symbian) and BlackBerry within 3 steps. The software can also help you to restore the deleted files like contacts, music, videos, photos, books, apps as long as you have the backup.
  • Price: $49.95
  • Compatible phones: Android
  • Sample review: “It really retrieved the message that I accidentally deleted. It was a relief because I badly needed the information in it. It was worth downloading.”
  • Our take: Mobikin has racked up some positive coverage for its approach to Android recovery, and it could be a viable solution for you if you have backups.





Your own phone

If you have an iPhone, you can be your own best resource for data recovery. Apple offers built-in methods to recover your data, and the best third-party software is tapping into those methods anyway. 

Apple encourages users to back up their phones constantly, and with good reason. Most data-recovery software will rely on these backups to extract your data and recover your text messages. You can either back up to Apple’s iCloud service, which includes options for automatic nightly backup, or use the iTunes format, which require a more manual approach.

Storing your information in either spot, though, guarantees you some peace of mind in knowing that you.






Other Resources Retreiving Text Messages

Of course, the Internet is teeming with companies that claim to offer data-retrieval services, and not all of them are as effective as others.

It’s not always easy to figure out which ones offer legitimate value, and it can be especially difficult to tell when you’re already anxious about lost information and eager to try whatever you can to get it back.

Some red flags to note when searching for recovery software:

  • Bad reviews
  • No clear explanation of how recovery will work
  • Lots of glowing reviews written in nearly identical language
  • No contact information for company 

Here are a few companies we scouted that, due to either a proliferation of poor reviews or other reasons listed above, seemed less reputable: 

You may find that some of these tools work for you, but the best option for ensuring your messages’ safety is always to back them up while you have access to your phone. That way, you’ll know you can retrieve copies no matter how many times you drop that phone in a parking lot.

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