However, if you're new to iMessage, deleting photos and attachments may seem a bit confusing, especially when deleting multiple items at once. To make matters worse, Apple has also removed and then added again, a well-established way to remove iMessage photos and attachments in iOS 13, confusing even the most experienced users.
However, it is extremely easy to delete photos and attachments, as long as you know how to do it. There are three ways to accomplish this, we will see below.
Warning: If iMessage is set to synchronize with iCloud (iPhone Settings> Profile> iCloud> Messages), you may also lose photos and videos deleted from other iOS or iPadOS devices.
Delete photos and attachments directly
When you use the Messages application, you can delete multiple photos and attachments directly from any iMessage conversation thread when they are displayed. However, this method is better for deleting a few items at a time. For a better way to delete a lot of photos and attachments, check out the following method.
Step 1: Tap and hold an image or attachment. In the menu that appears, tap More … to enter the selection mode.
2nd step: Tap to select the photos and attachments you want to delete. The Messages application tends to lose your selections if you scroll too far from your initial selection, so keep this in mind. When you are finished, tap the Trash icon, and then tap Delete messages to confirm.
Warning: Do not touch the Delete All option in the upper left corner of the screen. This will remove the entire conversation thread.
View and delete photos and attachments
With the initial release of iOS 13, Apple removed an important feature that allowed deleting multiple items while reviewing all the photos and attachments of a conversation thread. However, the missing feature has been added with the iOS 13.2 incremental update. So be sure to update your iPhone before proceeding (iPhone Settings> General> Software Update).
Step 1: Tap the contact's profile photo at the top of a conversation thread. Follow by pressing Info.
2nd step: On the screen that appears later, you will see a list of photos, shared links and attachments divided into separate sections. Tap View All Photos or View All Attachments to review all photos and attachments related to the conversation thread.
Step 3: Tap Select in the upper-right corner of the screen, and then choose the photos or attachments you want to delete. Tap Delete to delete the selected photos and videos.
Note: If you have not updated your iPhone to iOS 13.2, the Select option will not appear in the upper right corner of the screen.
Delete photos and attachments through the Settings app
Another convenient way to easily delete multiple iMessage photos and attachments is to use the Settings app on your iPhone. However, it will not separate photos and attachments by conversation thread. On the contrary, it displays the elements of all the conversation threads.
Step 1: Open the Settings app on your iPhone. Tap General, and then tap iPhone storage.
2nd step: Scroll down and tap Messages. You can then view your photos, videos, and other attachments by tapping the corresponding category under Documents.
Step 3: After pressing the desired category, tap the Edit option in the upper right corner of the screen and select the items you want to delete. Finally, tap the Trash icon to delete them.
Point: Use the storage size indicators next to each item to determine which items to delete in order to save the most available space. You can also preview a photo, video, or attachment directly from the Settings application itself.
Bonus Tip – Automatically delete old messages
The Messages application also offers you the ability to automatically delete old messages (photos, videos, attachments, etc.) after 30 days or a year. However, you will also lose text messages. However, if you regularly receive many photos and attachments and storage is a problem, it may be interesting to watch.
Start by opening the iPhone Settings application. Scroll down the list, tap Messages, and then tap Keep messages under Message History. On the next screen, press 30 days or 1 year.
Your iPhone will then automatically delete messages whenever they exceed the selected duration.
Manage your storage
Deleting photos and unwanted messages can really help you in the long run. You not only get much cleaner conversation threads, but you also release valuable storage. Make sure you have a cleaning party once in a while, just so the whole process does not take too much time.
Then: Did you know that you can send SMS and MMS directly in the comfort of your iPad? Find out how below.