How to edit and unsend iPhone texts

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APPLE is finally letting you edit and unsend texts – but with a catch.

The feature technically only arrives in September, but there’s a trick that lets you do it right now.

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You’ll soon be able to edit and unsend iMessagesCredit: Apple

Editing texts after they’ve been sent is a rare feature – even WhatsApp doesn’t have it yet.

But WhatsApp has offered unsending – pulling a text back from a recipient’s phone – for a while now.

Apple is finally catching up in the new iOS 16 update for its iMessage texting system.

But you’ll need to join the iOS 16 beta to try it ahead of September.

How to join iOS 16 beta

First, consider whether installing an iOS beta is right for you.

Ultimately it’s still test software, so you can encounter bugs – sometimes very serious.

So if you only have one iPhone, it might be frustrating to use a new iOS.

That said, the iOS public beta is usually fairly stable so you shouldn’t find too many devastating issues.

You’ll also want to make sure you’ve backed up all of your data before installing a new iOS.

To join the iOS beta, you simply need to head over to the Apple website.

You can sign up for the iOS 16 beta here.

“New public betas for iOS 16, iPadOS 16, macOS Ventura, tvOS 16, HomePod software version 16 and watchOS 9 are coming soon,” Apple explains.

“As a member of the Apple Beta Software Program, you can take part in shaping Apple software by test-driving pre-release versions and letting us know what you think.”

You’ll need to sign up and enrol your devices, which will give you the opportunity to test the latest iOS 16 features once the public beta is live.

The beta will also feature a special app called Feedback Assistant where you can report any issues you find.

You’ll need a valid Apple ID, and that’s it – no fees or compensation involved.

Installing the beta also won’t affect your hardware warranty.

You can leave the beta at any time.

How to edit an iPhone text

Not all iMessages can be tweaked or deleted: there’s a time limit.

You only have 15 minutes to make any changes to a text before the option runs out.

Simply hold down on the message to edit it.

Recipients will be alerted when a text has been edited.

However it won’t be possible to see exactly what changes have been made – unless you had previously seen the message and remembered what it said.

Also important is that both the sender and recipient will need to be on iOS 16 for the feature to work.

So even if you have iOS 16, you won’t be able to unsend or edit a text for a person who hasn’t yet upgraded.

You’ll receive a warning that some people won’t see your edits if this is the case.

For the feature to work, everyone needs to be running iOS 16.

Sadly, if you’re using WhatsApp then there’s no way to edit a text.

That said, WhatsApp regularly adds new features and is already testing a similar hack.

So you might not have to wait too long before you can edit WhatsApp texts too.

How to unsend an iPhone text

You can unsend an iMessage on iOS 16 within the first 15 minutes by holding down on the text.

But don’t think you can do it silently.

Just like on WhatsApp, if a text has been “unsent” then a note will appear for both the sender and recipient.

This will stop any confusion once a text has vanished.

On WhatsApp, it’s a very similar process.

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Simply hold down on the message and choose Delete For Everyone.

This option disappears after too much time has passed, so be quick.

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