How to delete saved messages on iPhone

On your iPhone, you can save phone numbers with a contact name so whenever you receive a call or a message, you know who’s trying to contact you without having to memorize their number.

Unfortunately, sometimes the numbers you saved with contact names stop showing the contact names and only the numbers.

For example, if you saved Johns number as (541) 754-3010, when john messages or calls you, John name doesn’t show up, only his number. There can be very confusing when you get a text because you won’t know who it’s from.

Also, it can take you a long time to realize that your friends are trying to contact you because you may think it’s just a random number.

The Reason Only Numbers are Showing

The reason your iPhone messages are showing phone numbers but not contact names is that iCloud is having trouble syncing your numbers with their name. This causes only numbers to show up when you receive a text. To fix this, you’ll need to sync your iCloud contacts with your iPhone.

1. Turn iCloud Off

The first way to fix this problem is to turn your iCloud contacts off then on. Doing this will restart the synchronization between your iCloud and your iPhone, therefore, allowing your contacts names to show up whenever you receive a message.

To restart iCloud:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Click on your Name.
  3. Select iCloud.
  4. Toggle off Contacts. Here, you’ll be asked what you would like to do with the previously synced iCloud contacts on your device.
  5. Select Delete.
  6. Toggle on Contact.
  7. Select Merge. You’ll need to wait a while for your contacts to sync with your iPhone. Once your contacts have synced with your iPhone, you can ask someone to message you to check if their name is showing up instead of their contact number.

2. Update Contact Names

Since the problem is related to the phone app and it stores your contacts, you can troubleshoot the problem from here. To try and restore your contacts names, you can edit their contact and add a name. This should restore all of your contacts name back.

To edit contacts on iPhone:

  1. Tap a contact.
  2. Tap Edit.
  3. Assign a name to a contact.
  4. Tap Done. Check if all the other contacts name has been restored.

3. Force Quite Message App

Since the problem is coming from the message’s app, the next thing you can do is to quit the app. When using your iPhone, you use a lost of apps without closing and restarting them and this can cause a lot of problems to persist.

To quite the app: wipe up from your home screen > swipe the messages app off > open the messages app. From here, you can check if contact names are showing up.

4. Log out of iCloud

If the problem is being caused by iCloud, logging and then back into iCloud might solve the problem. If there’s a bug that’s causing sync issues within iCloud and your contacts, you’ll need to sign out.

To sign out of iCloud:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Click your Name.
  3. Tap Sign Out.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password.
  5. Toggle Off. Turn on the data you want to keep on your iPhone.
  6. Tap Sign Out.
  7. Tap Sign Out again to confirm that you want to sign out of iCloud.
  8. Enter your Apple ID and password.
  9. Tap Sign in. Check if your messages are still showing the numbers without the contact names.

5. Reset Network Settings

Resetting your network settings might fix the problem because they affect your contacts. Resetting this may restore your contacts names.

  1. Click on Settings.
  2. Go to General.
  3. Go to Reset.
  4. Click on Reset Network Settings.
  5. Put in your passcode. A message will pop up saying “This will delete all network settings, returning them to factory defaults”.
  6. Tap Reset Network Settings.