The big downside to deleting texts in iOS 16

iOS 16 from Apple (AAPL) is finally available. The software update, which is downloaded and installed automatically on your phone as it charges on the counter overnight, brings a series of big changes to your iPhone.

There is no denying that the update is impressive for iPhone owners.

Users will experience a redesigned lock screen, complete with widgets for everything from the weather to your activity. The update also features the ability to track your medications and improve image editing tools.

But the software’s most popular new feature is the ability to edit and unsend text messages. Yes, you can fix grammatical errors, pull out sharp texts you might have sent in a hurry, and finally change the word “duck” to the word you intended to send.

It’s a powerful tool, especially when combined with the new option that lets you mark previously read texts as unread. But don’t think that you can quickly fire up and pull out hot messages or change what you originally sent without consequences.

Here’s what messages will look like to people when you delete a message you’ve sent to them. (Photo: Howley)

That’s because Apple has included a specific warning for its new feature that tells users when someone has unchecked or edited a text they sent them.

So no, the text editing and dragging feature is not your jailbreak card. You can’t fire texts at people like cruise missiles without leaving debris in their inboxes.

Moreover, if the person you are trying to pull a text from doesn’t have iOS 16 installed, they will still see your text message.

However, Apple’s latest innovation is worth using when you need to fix a text you forgot to proofread or need to change the time of a meeting. Here’s how to use it.

How to delete and edit your texts

Deleting or editing text is very easy. You have to go to the text you want to delete or edit, long press on it, and wait for the popup to appear.

From there you can choose the Edit or Undo Send button depending on what you want to do with your message. You can edit messages five times for up to 15 minutes after sending them.

After that, it becomes permanent.

To edit or delete the text, just long press on the message you want to change and select the appropriate action.  (Photo: Howley)

To edit or delete the text, just long press on the message you want to change and select the appropriate action. (Photo: Howley)

For non-send tests, you’ll only have 2 minutes to pull it back if you don’t want someone to see that message you sent out too quickly.

In other words, Apple’s text message update won’t let you send bad texts and then delete them as if they weren’t there before, and you won’t be able to modify them to change what you said earlier without anyone knowing.

For anyone else who just wants to change the word “duck” in their texts, the new text message editor and delete tool is more than a welcome change.

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