When iTunes creates a backup of your iPhone data, your text messages also get saved to your computer. Unfortunately, these backups are unreadable database files, which can only be loaded onto an iPhone for viewing. However, there are many third-party software solutions that let you read iPhone text messages on your PC and export them into other readable file formats, such as PDF documents or spreadsheets.

DiskAid

Purchase this software from the DigiDNA website for $30 and install it on your PC (link in Resources). Connect your iPhone to your computer with the USB cable and launch the application. Locate the "Data" category on the sidebar and select "Messages." All of your text messages appear onscreen, sorted by conversation. You can read text messages within the DiskAid app, or export them into a PDF document or Excel spreadsheet.

IExplorer

Purchase and download this software from the Macroplant developer website for $35 (link in Resources). Connect your iPhone to your computer with the USB cable and launch iExplorer. Click on the "Data" tab and select "Messages." As with DiskAid, your messages are grouped by conversation and you can browse through them within the program. You can also export the messages to TXT or PDF for other viewing formats.

Backuptrans

Purchase a Backuptrans license for $19 from the developer website (link in Resources). Download and install the application. Connect your iPhone to your computer with the USB cable and launch Backuptrans. Right-click on your iPhone from the "Device" category in the sidebar. Choose "Export SMS to File" and select a TXT, DOC, CSV or HTML file format. Open the exported file to view your text messages.

CopyTrans Contacts

Purchase and download the CopyTrans Contacts software from the developer website for $20. Install the application and plug your iPhone into the computer with your USB cable. Launch CopyTrans Contacts and click on the Message icon, which looks like a speech bubble. All of your text messages appear on screen, sorted by conversation.