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How to Know If Your Text Message Was Read

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Here’s how to check if someone has viewed a message you sent using an Android or iOS phone, or WhatsApp.

Use the iPhone to read receipts

On an iPhone, the only way to determine whether a text you sent using Messages, the operating system’s default texting app, was read is through read receipts. You will see the word Read under your most recent message to the receiver, along with the time the message was read, if you and your recipient both utilize Apple’s iMessage service and have enabled read receipts.

To enable or disable read receipts in Messages for iOS, follow these steps:

Only when both you and your recipient enable iMessage from the Messages settings will read receipts function. If you use SMS texting or if the recipient doesn’t have an iOS device, read receipts won’t function.

  • Launch Settings.
  • The green icon with the white text bubble inside is Messages. Tap it.
  • Set Send Read Receipts to On.
  • When you read someone else’s message, others are aware. You’ll notice Read beneath your message and the time it was read if your recipient enabled read receipts as well.

Use Android smartphones to read receipts

On Android smartphones, the situation is comparable. Read receipts are supported by the Google Messages app, however the carrier is also required to support this function. For you to determine whether your receiver has viewed your message, read receipts must be turned on.

To enable read receipts on Android devices, follow these steps:

  • Open Settings from the text messaging app. Tap the three vertical dots or lines at the top of the screen if you don’t see Settings. 
  • Navigate to Conversations, Text Messages, or Chat features. Tap More Settings if this option isn’t on the initial page that appears.
  • Depending on your phone and what you want to do, toggle the Read Receipts, Send Read Receipts, or Request Receipt switches on (or off).
  • To determine whether your SMS message was received by the intended recipient, enable Delivery Receipts. You won’t know if the message was read with this option. Open the Messages app on a newer phone, then select Settings > Advanced > Get SMS delivery reports.

Read receipts from WhatsApp

Built-in read receipts for messages are shown next to them in WhatsApp as checkmarks. Two grey check marks indicate that the message was delivered, two grey check marks indicate that it was sent, and two blue check marks indicate that it was read.

Here’s how to turn off read receipts in WhatsApp if you don’t want senders to know whether you have read their messages:

  • Open WhatsApp and click the gear icon in the lower-right corner to access settings.
  • Click Account.
  • Click Privacy.
  • To stop the other person from knowing when you’ve viewed a message, toggle off viewed Receipts.
  • Close Settings. The two blue checkmarks don’t show up on messages you send or receive, and read receipts are disabled.
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