Exporting iPhone SMS Messages - How To?
December 19, 2014 5:04 PM   Subscribe

I have a bunch of text messages that I need to use to substantiate certain statements. I would like to export many messages from my phone, for two reasons...

1. To prevent against loss or theft of the phone
2. To present the messages in organized, time-stamped manner, clearly indicating the names of the several conversants.

Preliminary research suggests I will need to purchase some software; that's OK with me, just looking for the "right" software. If I'm mistaken please enlighten!

I am using iPhone 5S still running iOS 7.1.2. The transfer will be made to a MacBook Pro early 2011 running Mavericks.

On Preview I see something from 2013 called Phoneview... is that still the king? Things move fast, may be something new and better...

posted by Mister_A to Technology (6 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I don't know of anything better than PhoneView. It'll do what you need.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 5:19 PM on December 19, 2014

The way i remember used to be best to do this was to make a non password protected backup with itunes, then read it with something like this. Phoneview is $5 less and... does the same thing?

iMazing pretends to be free but also costs $30. All these apps seem almost identical, honestly. iMazing used to be called diskaid though, and that's what i remember using in ye olden iphone days back when screens weren't as wide and phones still fit in your pocket all the way.

There appears to be no easy way to do this for free anymore unless you jailbreak the phone. The thing is, it wouldn't surprise me if many sources that needed legitimate timestamped records of stuff from a phone would question files from a "hacked" phone "because they could be faked" or whatever. SMStool let you forward timestamped messages to an email address, as i remember, though.

Getting exactly what you want seems to be a case of having to buy one of the 3 apps mentioned above though. There's also ibackupbot, but it's also $35 and has a crappier interface. There just isn't anything under $30 that does this, i guess.
posted by emptythought at 5:29 PM on December 19, 2014

I used Decipher Tools to export text messages from an iPhone5 to a MacBook Pro - I think it was in the $30-40 range.
posted by bendy at 7:05 PM on December 19, 2014

Was the phone syncd to Messages on the Mac? If so, you could just print to PDF from Messages.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:05 AM on December 20, 2014

Response by poster: Guys, I thank you for the solid recommendations. Will get this done this weekend. BB I wish I had synced it; phone = personal; comp = company so I didnt think to do so. Great idea and one to keep in mind in future.
posted by Mister_A at 9:09 AM on December 20, 2014

Response by poster: I got PhoneView for Mac and it's the bomb!
posted by Mister_A at 1:30 PM on January 19, 2015

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