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Samsung Galaxy S4: How to Show Text Message Preview in the Lock Screen

Assigning message tone is one way that you can do to make you more easier to know if you have an incoming message in your phone. You can do so through Settings menu, Messaging app settings and Contacts app(it will allow you to assign different message tone for different contact).

See also: How to Change Message Tone with Three Easy Ways in the Samsung Galaxy S4

Aside from allow you to change message tone, Messaging app also has an option called preview message that will allow you to make your phone displaying sender's name and content of received message in the lock screen and the status bar.

How to enable preview message?
FYI, this step works for all lock screen methods. But, as the example, I used swipe method to unlock my lock screen when I tried it. Well, here they are:
  1. Open Messaging app.
  2. Tap the Menu key then select Settings.
  3. Scroll down to find Preview message and then tick the box next to this option to enable it.
  4. Now, when you receive an incoming text message, you can see the message preview(sender's name and content) in the lock screen and the status bar. To open it, swipe the lock screen to unlock the screen and open the message, or swipe the top of the screen to the bottom to open notification panel then tap the message notification to open it.

Indeed, this feature will be able to make you easier to know who has sent the message and what the content of the message is. But, it also can make another people easily know your message. So, depending on your priority, if you like easiness then you can try to use this feature, while if you're tight with your privacy then you may don't need to use this feature. So, how about you? Have you used this feature on your phone?


  1. I would like to be able to have the option of just displaying the sender's name rather than both the sender's name and the content of the text message.?

    1. Hi Shelby R,
      Thanks for coming.
      Sadly to say that the stock Messaging app doesn't have an option to show only the sender name without the content.
      FYI, I've tried other Messaging apps (Hangouts, Handcent and Go SMS Pro) but they also didn't have the option to show only the sender name of the message.

  2. Is there a way to turn off the pop up on the lock screen all together?

    1. Hi Juan Lopez,
      Thanks for coming and I'm sorry for so late answer.
      There are some conditions that make the pop-up for a new message is not displayed on lock screen:
      1. When the lock screen is turned off.
      2. When the "notifications" option in the stock Messaging app settings is disabled.
      3. When the "disable notifications" option in blocking mode feature is enabled.
      So, as long as one of those conditions is not fulfilled, then the stock Messaging app will always display a pop up on lock screen when you have a new text message, either when you enable or disable the Preview message option in your phone.

  3. There is no preview message option under messaging settings

    1. Hi Ben Dick,
      Thanks for coming.
      FYI, this post was written when S4 ran with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.
      If your S4 is running with Android Kitkat or Lollipop, use the following steps to find the "preview message" option:
      1. Open Messaging app.
      2. Tap the Menu key and then select "Settings".
      3. Scroll down the screen and then tap "Notifications".
      4. If Notifications is off, tap the ON/OFF switch to turn it on.
      5. Check the box next to "Preview message" to enable it.

  4. There is no preview message button since I updated my phone. Please help!

    1. Hi Buddy,
      Thanks for coming.
      First, may I know your phone's model number and Android version?
      If yours is S4 and it runs with Android Kitkat or Lollipop, see my reply for Ben Dick's comment to find the "preview message" option.

  5. I'm using the galaxy s4 with the update from last year. A few weeks ago I disabled the message preview option. All of a sudden yesterday the previews came back. Not only that, but when I go back in to the message settings and unchecked the preview box again to disable it, it won't save that. So every time I disable and close out settings, it enables it all over again. What's going on here?

  6. Every time I click the tick on preview message it never works and I still receive messages under 'new message' know anyway on how I can change this? Thanks.

    1. Hi Cheyenne Manning,
      Thanks for coming.
      Make sure the display option for lock screen notifications is set to Show all content. You can use the following steps to set it up:
      1. Go to the settings menu.
      2. Tap "My device" tab.
      3. Tap "Sounds and notifications".
      4. Scroll the screen to the very bottom. Tap "While locked" and then select "Show all content".


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Hi the insiders,
Thanks for coming and I hope you can get something useful here.
Before submitting your comment to ask about an issue, please make sure to provide information as much as possible (at least write your model number and Android version) and describe the problem clearly.
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