Why Does My iPhone Say I Have a Text Message When I Don’t?

Updated on May 2, 2016
Why Does My iPhone Say I Have A Text Message When I Don’t?
Why Does My iPhone Say I Have A Text Message When I Don’t?

Sometimes the iPhone has a glitch that makes it say you have a message when you don't. Your messages app will display a "1" indicating that there is a new message, and even after you open the app to look, the "1" just never disappears.

It is annoying because you keep looking at it thinking you have missed something.

There are a number of possible reasons for this and more importantly solutions, which will quickly and easily solve your problem.

Reasons Why Your iPhone May Indicate A Text Message

Sometimes there is nothing obvious, so there are a few tips to consider:

  • Place your finger on the top of the screen and pull down and a list of unread emails, events and text messages will appear.
  • Have you received a message that was in a ‘group’, so a message that was sent to a number of recipients at the same time? There could be an unread message amongst them still. Open each SMS conversation and scroll through to the top to find the unread message.
  • Close the SMS app in the task manager. Double click on the home button, and a row of recently active icons will appear. Scroll through until you can see the messages green icon and hold your finger down in it. A red minus symbol will appear. Select it and the app will quit. Then simply navigate back to your main screen and re-launch the app.
  • Send an SMS to yourself.
  • Reset your phone. Hold the sleep/wake and the home key for 10 seconds and your phone will turn off. It will reboot automatically.
  • Delete all of your text messages.
  • Check your voicemail. That ‘1’ could indicate a message has been left for you.
  • Sync your iPhone with iTunes and that may clear the problem.
  • Visit an Apple Store and ask one of the customer service staff to guide you.

iPhone Do Not Disturb Function

Did you know that the iPhone has a do not disturb function in the latest iOS?

Navigate to Settings>Notifications>Do Not Disturb

When this is enabled, calls and alerts that arrive whilst your phone is locked will be silenced and a moon shaped icon will appear in the status bar.

How Can I Turn My SMS Notifications Off?

Just about every phone on the market provides you with a notification when a new text message arrives; even when the phone is locked. The iPhone goes one step further and displays a preview of the message and who it is from.

For privacy reasons some people do not want details such as these being displayed on the lock screen. You may only want to see what you have One New Text Message received.

How can this be achieved?

Go into Settings > Messages > Show Preview (or Show Subject Field) and turn that OFF.

And then go to Settings > Notifications > Messages > Show Preview and then turn it off.

Note: If you want to hide the caller details, simply go to Settings > Notifications > Phone > View In Lock Screen > Off


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    • profile image

      Joy Mintorn 2 weeks ago

      thanks the siri thing worked for me. Ta Joy

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      Brett 3 weeks ago


      Have Siri help you find the offending message that is causing all the problems. Ask Siri, "Siri, read me my unread messages". She will read the message that is giving you the phantom text notification. She will ask if you want to reply. Just say no. When you return to your homescreen, the unread text notification will be gone. Simple.

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      Paul J. 3 months ago

      The Siri option worked. Thanks!

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      Linda White 8 months ago

      Read on another site to ask Siri to read the unread message. She did and it was then removed. It was part of a group message that wasn't marked unread. Hooray for Siri!

    • profile image

      Cin 15 months ago

      Success " Thanks :) after a few other attempts - I used the RESET : option

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      kate 16 months ago

      One unread shows up on my settings apps how can i get rid of it

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      Alana 17 months ago

      The sending messages to myself thing really worked. It seemed like it wasn't at first, but once I deleted the conversation with myself from the bar it worked.

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      Bala 2 years ago

      Sending text message to myself, resolved . Great. Thanks a lot.

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      Rich 2 years ago

      Open messages, hit edit, and hit read all

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      ariel 3 years ago

      sending s text message to myself was the only thing that worked, and of course that was the absolute last step i took !

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      Iggy 3 years ago

      What I did was send text messages to myself then deleted them afterwards. Worked! Thanks tres!

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      Collette 3 years ago

      Sent message to myself and finally worked after third time and deleted messages.. Thank you!!

    • profile image

      tres 3 years ago

      Try sending a text to yourself and then deleting that text.

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      Philippa 3 years ago

      Have tried sending text to myself twice and hasn't cleared it! Help! Tried the switching off that hasn't helped! Grrrrr to these I-phone glitches!

    • profile image

      Julia 3 years ago

      Actually, never mind. The sending a text to myself worked. It didn't work before, but this time it did. This was helpful!

    • profile image

      Jenna 3 years ago

      Still stuck. No good

    • AnswerQuestions profile image

      AnswerQuestions 3 years ago


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      lg 3 years ago

      Yes!!!! I called apple, and even restoring my phone didn't work. But the sending a text to myself fixed it right away! Thank you so much!!

    • profile image

      dd 3 years ago

      Thanks so much! Sending txt msg to myself fixed the problem for me as well.

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      bee vee 3 years ago

      yes! sent a text to myself and it disappeared! thanks!

    • profile image

      Morgan 4 years ago

      Thanks so much!!!! My phone said I had six unread messages for weeks and it was driving me nuts! I tried tons of things but never once thought of sending myself a message. It worked great!

    • AnswerQuestions profile image

      AnswerQuestions 4 years ago


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      ohstella 4 years ago

      it worked!!!! i tried a lot and sending an SMS to myself did the trick! thank you!

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      pet0start 4 years ago

      im new here, thanks very much, it worked like a charm!

      will try the new Iphone5S? im checking the detais at http://apple.com/ and also the new Iphone5C that one will really be good?