Procedure to edit or unsend an iMessage in iOS 16

In the iOS 16 beta, Apple has launched a feature to its iMessage chat app that allows you to unsend and edit a sent message — with some rules in place. (In addition, the feature won’t work unless the recipient is also on iOS 16, iPadOS 16, or macOS Ventura.)

For deleting the message

  • Long-press on the message.
  • On the drop-down menu, tap Undo Send.
  • The message will immediately disappear (in a rather pretty “poof”).

In the first public beta, you were allowed 15 minutes to unsend your message. However, if you’ve installed the second public beta, that has been changed to two minutes After two minutes, the option will disappear from the drop-down menu.

For editing the message

  • Long-press on the message.
  • On the drop-down menu, tap Edit.
  • Edit your message and tap the check mark to the right of the message to send the correction. (Or tap the “x” to the left of the message if you’ve changed your mind about changing the text.)
  • If you want to see all of your edits, tap on the small Edited link below the message. You can then tap on Hide Edits in order to just see the last message.

If you long-press on your message after 15 minutes have passed, then the Edit option will no longer be on the menu. But the second public beta adds a new limitation: while you could edit that message as many times as you want in the first public beta, you are allowed to edit it up to five times; after that, the Edit option in the drop-down menu disappears.

And a reminder that neither option works if your recipient is on an earlier version of the OS.