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8 Best Text Message Spy Apps in 2023: How to Read Someone’s Messages

In today‘s digital world, it‘s easier than ever for kids and teens to get into trouble online. From cyberbullying to sexting to viewing inappropriate content, many parents feel anxious about their child‘s digital safety. This is where text message spy apps can provide peace of mind.

Text message spy apps allow parents to monitor their child‘s text messages, social media chats, location and more – all without the child knowing. While controversial, these apps can help protect kids from digital dangers when used ethically by caring parents.

In this guide, we‘ll review the top 8 text message spy apps for secretly monitoring your child‘s phone in 2023.

What is a Text Message Spy App?

A text message spy app is a phone monitoring program that lets you view someone‘s text messages, call logs, social media chats, location history and more – all in stealth mode. The user will never know their texts are being monitored.

Spy apps work by syncing data from the target phone to an online dashboard or app on your device. Advanced spy apps can even extract deleted texts, capture passwords entered into the device, log keystrokes and take remote screenshots or photos using the device‘s camera.

Is It Legal to Use a Text Message Spy App?

In most countries, it is legal for parents to monitor their minor child‘s phone activities using a text spy app. However, there are some limitations:

  • The child must be under 18 years old
  • The parent must own the device
  • Explicit notice and consent is ideal

Installing spyware on an adult‘s device without their knowledge is illegal in the US under the Wiretap Act. However, many people still use spy apps with mutual consent in marital relationships.

It‘s best to consult your country‘s laws before using spyware. Ethical use on minors is generally accepted.

8 Best Text Message Spy Apps of 2023

1. Spyic

Spyic is a wildly popular text and phone spy app used by over a million parents worldwide. It has an excellent reputation and provides very powerful monitoring capabilities.

With Spyic, you can:

  • View all text messages, even deleted ones
  • See social media chats on apps like Facebook, WhatsApp and Snapchat
  • Track GPS location in real-time
  • Remotely monitor calls and surroundings
  • View browsing history and installed apps
  • Take remote screenshots of the device
  • Much more

Spyic is designed for stealth monitoring. The app icon is hidden after installation and runs in the background without reducing device performance. Your child will never know it‘s there!

Compatible with: iOS, Android

Price: Starts from $10/month

Overall, Spyic provides unparalleled text spying capabilities paired with an easy-to-use online dashboard. It‘s trusted by parents worldwide and comes highly recommended.

2. mSpy

mSpy is another industry-leading text and cell phone spy app on the market. It has powerful monitoring features and is easy to set up even for beginners.

mSpy lets you:

  • Read texts, even from messengers like WhatsApp
  • View call logs with durations
  • Track real-time GPS location
  • Monitor social media activity
  • View browsing history
  • Take screenshots remotely
  • Works in invisible mode

One standout feature is mSpy‘s geo-fencing capabilities – you can set up location-based alerts so if your child leaves or enters a certain area, you‘ll know.

mSpy also has versions tailored for parents and employers. The employer edition boasts even more monitoring capabilities for company devices.

Compatible with: iOS, Android, basic phones

Price: From $10.83/month

With robust features and quality support, mSpy is one of the top text spying solutions available today.

3. FlexiSPY

Boasting the most powerful monitoring capabilities, FlexiSPY is a top choice for those demanding the very best features.

FlexiSPY gives you total control over the target device, including:

  • SMS spying with deleted text recovery
  • Recording of calls
  • Ambient listening
  • GPS tracking
  • Geo-fencing
  • Keylogger
  • View media files
  • Remote camera access
  • Very stealthy

FlexiSPY is the only spy app that lets you actually intercept phone calls and listen to live phone surroundings – great for monitoring teens.

Compatible with: iOS, Android, Blackberry, Symbian

Price: From $68/month

If you need the most premium features, FlexiSPY is hands-down the best text message spy app available today. A top choice for parents serious about keeping their kids safe in the digital world.

4. Spyzie

Spyzie is an affordable SMS spy app with all the tracking essentials. It‘s designed to be easy to set up, even for less tech-savvy parents.

With Spyzie, you can:

  • Read texts and social media chats
  • View media files sent and received
  • See web browsing history
  • Monitor GPS location
  • Remotely record surroundings
  • Works in hidden mode

Spyzie stands out with its simplicity and budget-friendly pricing. It‘s built with parents in mind, not techies. Although it lacks some advanced features, Spyzie delivers on the core phone monitoring essentials.

Compatible with: iOS, Android

Price: Starts from $12.5/month

For easy phone monitoring at a fair price, Spyzie hits the mark. A solid option for parents who prioritize simplicity and affordability.

5. Hoverwatch

A well-established player in the spy app industry, Hoverwatch has been tracking phones for over a decade. It has all the standard features, plus a few extras.

Hoverwatch enables you to:

  • View texts and messaging histories
  • Track GPS location
  • See web browsing history
  • Remotely capture screenshots
  • Monitor social media activity
  • Works in hidden mode
  • Extra features like keylogger and WiFi logs

One advantage of Hoverwatch is the availability of a free demo version to test it out before buying. It also has solid customer support.

Compatible with: Android, iOS, Windows and Mac computers

Price: From $19.95/month

With responsive customer support and free demo versions, Hoverwatch is a smart choice. While it lacks some premium features, it delivers a solid package at a reasonable price.

6. Spyier

Spyier is a popular spy app focused heavily on social media monitoring. If your main concern is your child‘s digital social life, Spyier is a tailored solution.

With Spyier you can:

  • View texts and messenger chats
  • Monitor calls and contacts
  • Track GPS location
  • See web browsing history
  • Remotely take photos
  • Stealth camera capturing
  • Social media monitoring for apps like Snapchat and WhatsApp

Social media safety is a big perk of Spyier. You can even see stories and posts on many apps that delete after viewing.

Compatible with: iOS devices only

Price: From $9.9/month

For social media savvy teens, Spyier delivers robust monitoring where it matters most. A top pick for parents concerned about digital peer influences.


Trusted by millions of people, XNSPY is a market leader in cell phone spying solutions. It offers advanced features tailored for parents and employers.

XNSPY enables you to:

  • Read texts and social media chats, even deleted ones
  • Listen to phone surroundings
  • View call logs and contact lists
  • Track GPS location remotely
  • Monitor web, app and social media activity
  • Much more

Some special capabilities include video call recording, instant messenger monitoring, and WiFi network logging. XNSPY also offers helpful customer support resources like live chat.

Compatible with: Android and iOS

Price: From $8.33/month

With robust features, quality support, and an intuitive interface, XNSPY hits the mark for a powerful text and phone spy app.

8. Highster Mobile

Highster Mobile is a Spyic, Spyzie, Spyier, Hoverwatch, mSpy, XNSPY, F…

Text message spy apps provide parents powerful monitoring capabilities that can help keep kids safe online. However, they also raise privacy concerns when misused. It‘s crucial for parents to use text spy apps ethically and legally.

Some best practices for ethical use include:

  • Only monitor your minor child once other options are exhausted
  • Inform your child you‘re monitoring their phone
  • Use spying data judiciously, not punitively
  • Avoid overly invasive monitoring
  • Lead with trust and communication, not control
  • Discontinue use if no longer needed

Spy apps are not a replacement for talking with your kids. When used appropriately by caring parents, however, they can offer peace of mind in today‘s digital age.



Michael Reddy is a tech enthusiast, entertainment buff, and avid traveler who loves exploring Linux and sharing unique insights with readers.