iOS tip: changing the email address your iMessages are sent from

By , Apr 28, 2016

iMessage not delivering

iMessage lets you keep in touch with other iOS and OS X users, and it ties together your Apple ID with your preferred email address and your iPhone phone number.

If you’ve ever wondered how you can control what phone number or email address the other person you’re texting can see, then you may be interested in learning how to set the default email address your iMessages get sent from on your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad.

In this tutorial, we’ll cover just that, and we’ll also talk about some scenarios where doing this is very important.

Why to choose a default email address for iMessage

Some people use iMessage for one thing – to keep in touch with their friends and family. Others use iMessage for a wide array of things, such as answering Craigslist ads or doing work-related activities.

If either of the aforementioned scenarios sound like you, then you should be considering choosing a default email address for where your iMessages will be sent from. After all, do you really want a random stranger from Craigslist or someone from work to have your personal phone number or email address? – It would be far better to give them one you can add or remove at any time.

Choosing a default email address for iMessage in iOS

If you’re interested in picking what email address or phone number that these kinds of people see when you do end up sending them an iMessage, then you should consider choosing a default email address for iMessage on your iOS device.

To do that, follow these steps:

1) Launch the Settings and and open the Messages preferences pane.

Changing Default iMessage email address in iOS

2) From the next page, tap on the Send & Receive preferences pane to open it.

Now you’ll see two sections – one that shows the phone numbers and email addresses you can be reached by, and those that you’ll start conversations from. Focus on the section titled Start New Conversations From.

3) Select the phone number or email address you wish to start iMessage conversations from.

That’s all there is to it! Now when you start a new iMessage with a stranger, they’re going to see the phone number or email that you’ve selected, and your other contact information will remain hidden from them.

This is perfect for answering any Craigslist ads or keeping personal information away from co-workers and other people who you don’t want to have your main contact information.

Wrapping up

It’s not that difficult to change the default email address that your iMessages are sent from, and in practice, it’s a good idea to choose one so you don’t inadvertently give the wrong person your personal contact details.


If you found this tutorial useful, we’d appreciate you leaving a comment below.

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  • diggitydang

    What happens in the scenario where I’ve previously iMessage with someone from my phone number and then I switch to Android, let’s say… Do the other people still see it as iMessage or will it get re-routed somehow into a text message? I know there was a class action lawsuit about this but never heard about what came of it.

    BTW, not that I’m switching (yet). I just don’t like the way Apple has been going lately and I’m mentally preparing myself. Hahahah!