How to Undelete Voicemails on the iPhone

Recovering a deleted voicemail is often possible

how to undelete iphone voicemails
Recovering deleted voicemails in iOS 11.

We've all had the experience of deleting a voicemail from our phones only to realize a little while later that we actually needed to save it. Well, if you're in that situation and you've got an iPhone, there's good news.

Each new version of the iPhone's Visual Voicemail has made checking your voicemail easier and better. It's even made it easier to things that were previously difficult, like undeleting voicemails.

When you delete a voicemail on the iPhone, it's not gone — at least, not right away. Instead, it moves into a Deleted Messages area, similar to the trash or recycle bin on your desktop computer. The files aren't deleted until you empty the trash or recycle bin.

How to Undelete Voicemails on iPhone

If you've deleted a voicemail and would now like it back, follow these steps:

  1. Tap the Phone app to open it.

  2. Tap the Voicemail icon in the bottom right corner.

  3. If you have deleted messages that can be undeleted, you'll see Deleted Messages option. Tap it to bring up a list of all the voicemails you've deleted that are still on your phone and can be undeleted.

  4. Tap the voicemail you want to undelete. In iOS 7 and up, this reveals some options beneath the voicemail. In iOS 6 or earlier, the selected voicemail is highlighted.

  5. In iOS 7 and up, tap Undelete beneath the selected voicemail. In iOS 6 or earlier tap Undelete at the bottom left side of the screen.

  6. Tap the Voicemail menu in the top left corner to return to the main Visual Voicemail screen. The voicemail you just undeleted will be there waiting for you.

When You Won't Be Able to Undelete Voicemail

While undeleting voicemail is easy on the iPhone, in some cases, you won't be able to save your old voicemails by following these instructions.

As mentioned previously, the Deleted Messages section of the iPhone is like the trash or recycle bin on a desktop computer, and the files stay there until they're emptied. While there's no "empty" button on the iPhone, the deleted voicemails are cleared from memory when you sync your iPhone with your computer. 

As long as you haven't synced your phone since you last marked a voicemail for deletion, you should be able to get it back. If a voicemail doesn't appear in the Deleted Messages section, though, it's likely gone for good. 

How to Permanently Delete iPhone Voicemails

You may want to permanently delete voicemails so that you're confident they're gone and can't be recovered. As noted, syncing with iTunes is one way to do that, but there's a faster step. You can clear deleted voicemails permanently and immediately by following these steps:

  1. Tap the Phone app.

  2. Tap Voicemail.

  3. Tap Deleted Messages.

  4. Tap Clear All in the top right corner.

  5. Tap Clear All in the pop-up confirmation screen.

  6. With that done, the deleted voicemails are gone and cannot be recovered.