How do I save a picture sent by text message?

Updated: 05/03/2022 by Computer Hope
Illustration of a person saving a photo on their phone

Most people like sharing pictures with others, including photos of loved ones, trips, or selfies. Occasionally, you might want to save a picture received via text message or SMS messaging. Select a link below to learn how to save pictures in text messages on Android and Apple smartphones.

Tip

The instructions on this page work also work for most Android tablets and the Apple iPad.

Save photos sent by text on an Android smartphone

Android logo

The steps below show you how to save a photo sent to you in Android text messages.

  1. Open the Messages app.
  2. Find the message containing the picture you want to save.

From this point, there are two ways to save the photo.

Method 1

  1. Tap the photo.
  2. Tap the download button.

Dog laying on its bed.

  1. Your photo is saved to the Photos app.

Method 2

  1. Press and hold your finger on the photo for about 1 second.
  2. Tap the kebab menu icon.

Kebab menu icon on Android.

  1. Tap Save.

Save selector on Android.

  1. Your photo is saved to the Photos app.

Save photos sent by text on an Apple iPhone

Apple iPhone

The steps below show you how to save a photo sent to you in an iMessage or text message on an iPhone.

  1. Open the Messages app (iMessage).
  2. Find the message containing the picture you want to save.

From this point, there are two ways to save the photo.

Method 1

  1. Tap the download icon next to the photo, if available.

Download image button on an iPhone.

  1. The photo is saved to the Photos app.

Method 2

  1. Tap the photo.
  2. Tap the download icon at the bottom-right corner of the screen.

Download button on an iPhone.

  1. The photo is saved to the Photos app.

Where do my photos go once they're downloaded or saved?

Any photos saved from the SMS or text message apps are automatically sent to the Photos app. If they aren't in the main photos area, there might be a folder or album called text messages, SMS photos, or something similar.