How to copy or forward iMessages

How to copy or forward messages on iPhone and iPad

Replying to an iMessage (or SMS or MMS) is only one of several things you can do with the iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, and Mac Messages app. You can also copy it or forward it onto someone else. Copying an iMessage is a great way to move important information to other apps, like Mail or Notes or for searching in Safari. Forwarding is a super fast way to share one person's iMessage with another. Here's how!

How to copy an iMessage (or SMS) on iPhone, iPod touch and iPad

Copying is handy for a time when you only need to copy the text from an individual message to the clip board and paste it somewhere else. That can be in a new or existing message or into a completely different app. This is the option you want to use if you need to use the content in a way other than forwarding it in another iMessage or SMS.

  1. Launch the Messages app on your iPhone or iPad and find the message you'd like to copy.
  2. Hold your finger down on the message until you get a popup menu.
  3. Now tap on Copy.

The text of the iMessage (SMS) is copied to the clipboard and you are now free to paste it wherever you'd like.

How to forward an iMessage (or SMS) on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad

  1. Launch the Messages app on your iPhone or iPad and find the message you'd like to copy.
  2. Hold your finger down on the message until you get a popup menu.
  3. Now tap on More....
  4. Tap on the Forward button in the lower right hand corner.
  5. A new message will populate pre-filled with your forwarded text. Just fill out the rest and send it on its way!

Keep in mind you can forward more than one message at a time too. Just tap all the ones you want to forward before you tap the actual forward button!

How to get more help with iMessage

If you're having issues getting iMessage to activate, get more help at the iMore forums, and for more tips, check out:

Allyson Kazmucha

Editor for iMore, Potter pundit, and the ninja in your iOS

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There are 3 comments. Add yours.

impaler says:

Always great tips, keep 'em comin'!

The notion of forwarding is kind of tricky though...all you're doing is copying a message into another message. Would be nice if iOS would add a "forwarded from" indicator to the outbound message, so I can see the trail.

James Viall says:

How do you delete a single message on OS X?

jeffsf says:

Nice rundown, but please note that the method for deleting individual messages doesn't work on iPad.