If you ever asked why you read a message they sent to your iPhone 13 and you didn’t answer, it’s because of a feature called read receipts.

There is a setting on your iPhone that allows people who text you to know when the message has been read. Some people don’t mind and even love it, while others prefer to keep their text message reading activities private.

You can turn off read receipts for text messages on iPhone by going to Settings > Messages > and turning off Send Read Receipts option.

How to prevent people from seeing that you are reading their text on iPhone

  1. Click “Settings”.
  2. Select Messages.
  3. Disable sending read receipts.

Our guide continues below with more information on how to turn off read receipts on iPhone 13, including pictures of the steps.

Outlook users might be familiar with receipt receipts as this has been a feature of this application for quite some time now.

Basically, a read receipt lets the sender know when you saw the message sent to you.

iPhone has a similar feature and it is likely that it is currently enabled on your device.

But this isn’t something you need to keep around, and it’s possible to turn off read receipts so the sender won’t know when you’ve read their text.

Our guide below will help you find and disable this setting so that the “read” notification below a received message does not appear again.

Related: You can read our guide about iMessages sent as text messages if sometimes some blue texts are green instead.

How to disable iPhone text message read receipts

The steps in this article were completed on the iPhone 13 running iOS 16, but will work for most other iPhone models and most other iOS versions.

Step 1: Find the Settings app icon on the Home screen and open it.

I open Settings

Step 2: Scroll down and select the Messages option.

Select Messages

Step 3: Scroll down and tap the button to the right of Send Read Receipts to turn it off.

How to disable read receipts on iPhone 13

Now that you know how to turn off read receipts on iPhone 13, you can tweak this setting depending on whether you want others to know that you’ve read their text messages or iMessages.

More information on disabling iPhone read receipts

If you disable read receipts on your iPhone, it will only affect whether or not other people can see if you’ve read their messages. It will not affect whether you see that others have read your messages.

Read receipts can be turned on and off as you like.

However, please note that this applies to anyone who sends you messages. You won’t be able to selectively block read receipts for individuals or groups of contacts.

If someone continues to spam you, you can block that sender by opening a conversation, tapping their name at the top of the screen, tapping the info button, and then selecting the “Block this caller” option.

The Messages menu in the Settings app includes several other options that you can also customize for your text messages.

For example, this list contains the SMS / MMS group, which includes the following items:

  • MMS – Allows you to send photos and videos in text messages.
  • Group Messages – Allows you to create and join group messages.
  • Show subject field – Turns the subject field on or off.
  • Character Count – Displays the number of characters used in the current SMS.
  • Blocked communications. You can open it to view the list of contacts and phone numbers that you have blocked.

You can also scroll down on the screen and turn off the Low quality photo mode option if people tell you that your photos appear blurry. You can also enable this if you want to use less data when sending photos.