How to Sort Texts from Contacts & Unknown Senders in iMessages on iPhone

How to Sort Texts from Contacts and Unknown Senders in Messages

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

I try to be good about keeping my Messages app clear of unwanted texts by deleting them. There are times, though, that I receive messages from people who are not in my Contacts and I may want to save the text, but not necessarily add the person to my Contacts list. That’s why I’m glad Apple added a sorting feature to Messages. Now I can keep my Contacts and Unknown Senders separate. Once you change this message-filter setting on your iPhone, you'll see two tabs in Messages: one for Contacts and one for Unknown Senders. Here’s how to sort texts from Contacts and unknown senders in Messages on your iPhone.

Related: How to Merge Duplicate Contacts

iPhone Life
Discover your iPhone's hidden features
Get a daily tip (with screenshots and clear instructions) so you can master your iPhone in just one minute a day.

To enable this feature:

  • Open the Settings app.

  • Scroll down and tap on Messages.

sms messages app
unknown text message on iphone
  • Scroll down to Message Filtering and toggle on Filter Unknown Senders.

How to Sort Texts from Contacts & Unknown Senders in iMessages on iPhone

Now you'll see a filter bar at the top of the messages list in your Messages app. Tap Contacts & SMS for messages from people you know and tap Unknown Senders for all other messages.

Top image credit: 10 FACE /

Master your iPhone in one minute a day: Sign up here to get our FREE Tip of the Day delivered right to your inbox.


Author Details

Paula Bostrom's picture

Author Details

Paula Bostrom

Paula is a freelance media broadcaster and journalist. She enjoys life at home with her husband, two kids, two dogs, two cats and a parrot. Her iPhone is never more than two feet away from her and she can't imagine life without it.