How to Get Alerts for New Replies in a Thread with iOS Mail

Waiting for important email messages? Have iOS Mail notify you

Mail Received Notification

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The Mail program in iOS for iPhone and iPad contains a handy feature that sends notifications to you whenever a new message arrives from a conversation thread you've marked. This is separate from VIP senders, which marks individual email addresses and adds their message to a dedicated folder. For new replies to conversations you mark, you'll get the iOS alerts, banners, sounds, and notifications you choose.

Instructions in this article apply to iPhone and iPad devices running iOS 8 and later.

Turn on Notifications for Mail

Before you can take full advantage of Mail notifications, make sure you can receive notifications.

  1. Open Settings on your iPhone, then tap Notifications.

    The locations of the Settings app and the Notifications menu on an iPhone
  2. In the Notifications screen, tap Mail.

  3. In the Mail screen, turn on the Allow Notifications toggle switch, then tap Thread Notifications.

    Turn on iPhone mail thread notifications
  4. In the Thread Notifications screen, turn on the Allow Notifications toggle switch. The notifications options for email threads are the same as the ones for all notifications.

  5. Choose to see notifications on the Lock Screen and in the Notification Center. Choose Banners to have notifications show up temporarily or stay on the screen until you dismiss them.

  6. Choose Sounds to play a sound when an alert comes through. Choose Badges to put a notification on the Mail icon when you receive a reply.

    Thread Notifications settings on an iPhone
  7. You'll receive alerts when you receive new emails in the thread according to the options you chose.

Get Alerts for New Replies in a Thread with iOS Mail While Writing

To have iOS Mail alert you about replies to an email you are writing:

  1. Tap the bell icon (it's to the right of the Subject field) while writing the message.

  2. Select Notify Me.

  3. When thread alerts are on, the bell icon appears filled in instead of as an outline. You'll receive a notification when a message for the thread is received.

    Tap the bell icon on the right of the subject line and tap Notify Me to turn on notifications.
  4. Tap the bell icon to turn off notifications.

Get Alerts for New Replies to an Existing Thread with iOS Mail

You can also turn on text thread notifications for existing conversations.

  1. Open the email thread you want to receive alerts about.

  2. Tap the flag icon, select Notify Me, then tap Notify Me again to confirm.

    Click the flag icon, and then tap Notify Me to turn on notifications and Notify Me to confirm
  3. You can also reach this menu from the inbox. Swipe left over the message, tap the More option (it's a grey box with three dots in it), tap Notify Me, then tap Notify Me again to confirm.

    Turning on notifications in iOS Mail
  4. To turn off notifications, return to the thread, tap the flag icon, then select Stop Notifying.

How Can I Find the Threads I Am Watching?

To spot conversations and emails that have thread alerts enabled in iOS Mail, look for the bell icon in the message list, in front of the sender or subject, or in the email to the right of the subject header line.