Mark Voicemail As Read / Listened on the iPhone Without Listening to Them

Mar 14, 2014 - 10 Comments

Mark Voicemail messages as heard / listened / read on the iPhone

Voicemail messages have been modernized quite a bit by the iPhone’s visual voicemail service, but it’s still fairly common to wind up with many stale voicemails that aren’t listened to. You don’t have to delete the messages, or even listen to them to mark them as read (listened? heard?) though, thanks to a simple yet handy little trick in the iPhone’s Phone app.

To mark a voicemail as read (or listened, whatever you want to call it) without actually listening to the message just do the following:

  1. Open the “Phone” app on the iPhone and go to the “Voicemail” tab
  2. Tap on the message in question to expand it
  3. Drag the scrubber slider from the left side all the way to the right so that the time remaining indicator says “0:00″
  4. Repeat as necessary for other voicemails to mark as listened / read

(The scrubber bar tap target in Voicemail is fairly small, you may need to try dragging it a few times to get the hang of it)

Mark Voicemail as Read on the iPhone

Outside of simply deleting a voicemail message from the iPhone completely, this is the best way to mark a voicemail as listened / read without actually listening to it.

If you’re overwhelmed with tons of voicemail messages that you know aren’t particularly worth listening to because they’re ancient or just because they’re voicemails from something that you’ve already addressed, this is a great trick to clear them out and remove that little number badge on the “Voicemail” portion of your Phone app. Those who forward their iPhone number often or just turn off inbound calls will probably find this particularly useful.

The scrubber tool in the Phone apps voicemail service is really what makes visual voicemail what it is, letting you easily skip around within a message to listen to parts of it again or rewind. That same handy scrubber tool is found throughout iOS, including the Music app, Podcasts app, movies, and
and the music controls within Control Center as well.

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPhone, Tips & Tricks

10 Comments

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  1. Kr00 says:

    Listen, could you stop posting tips that only relate to US users. Visual voice mail doesn’t exist anywhere else on the planet. If you wish to be taken seriously as a world wide Apple blog, enough with the US centric reports already. A world does exist out side your country, you know!!

  2. beebs says:

    “Visual Voicemail” has been “unavailable” for me for quite a long time now…at least a month…I have to “call” voicemail.

    What happened to it? I”ve got an iPhone 5, and it has been doing this since even before the last two updates.

    It seemed to disappear about two months or so ago, with the “Visual voicemail is currently unavailable”.

  3. John says:

    Like I needed so someone to tell me this. I have got a lot of other good OSX and iOS tips from you in the past though so thanks for a great site Paul.

  4. Penney says:

    I, too, have found a lot of useful information on this blog. I am happy to have found it accidentally while looking for a fix for a Mac issue and have been a subscriber ever since!

    It doesn’t matter that I cannot use or apply every single post (I don’t own an iPad for example). I take what I can use and ignore the rest.

  5. a says:

    I actually had figured this out on my own but was looking for a quicker way. Yes, sliding the marker is much quicker than listening, but when you have 30 to do, it still takes a long time (you have to wait until it starts, slide, wait until it clicks off, go to the next one, etc.). Seems smart if they would have just made a “select” and then “mark as read/received/listened to”.

    Still, for those trying to listen to them all, this is quicker.

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