Apple's iOS 14 update has been available for a little over a week, since rolling out to iPhones on Wednesday, Sept. 16 — and there's a lot to discover. If you've been chatting with your besties in a group chat, you've probably noticed some changes. Not only can you update the group pic after pinning your Message, but you can do so much more in the actual group messages. If you haven't seen these changes, there are a couple possible reasons why you don't have iOS 14's mentions in Messages.
First off, make sure you have the iOS 14 update. Then, make sure whoever you tag in your group chat also is running on iOS 14. If they don't, you won't be able to tag them, because they'll see the mention as a regular text instead of a tag. So first fix, make sure all group members are using iOS 14. If that doesn't work, there might be other issues.
Mentions only work in group iMessage chats, which means if you have an Android user in your group, the conversation won't be an iMessage. Instead, it will switch to SMS and MMS messages, preventing you from mentioning anyone. You also can't type a name that isn't as it appears in your Contacts app, so make sure you're mentioning them correctly. (For example, if your bestie is in your phone with five hearts in between their first and last name, you'll need to type in those hearts to get the mention to work.)
Lastly, if you're trying to tag someone outside of your group message, that won't work. If you'd like to add them in and they are an iPhone user with iOS 14, tap the info button, add them, and you'll be able to tag them.
To use mentions in a chat, you'll need to open your group message in Messages, type the contact's name, and then tap on the name when it appears slightly grayed out. You can also mention someone by typing the "at" (@) sign, followed by their name.
Most of the time, people will get a notification when they've been mentioned, even when they've muted the group message. However, if the person you're tagging has all of their notifications for messages turned off or set their phone to "Do Not Disturb," then they won't receive a notification. You can also adjust your settings to only get notified when someone mentions you in a group, or turn off notifications altogether by going to Settings > Messages and toggling off "Notify Me."
If you're using an iPad, the same rules will apply. Once you've got the hang of mentions, inline replies work similarly, and also only work with others who have iOS 14. To use inline reply, you'll need to open your group messages, press and hold the message in the thread you want to reply to and tap Reply. After you've typed your reply, hit Send.
With so many new messaging features the group chat is about to be lit. So if you don't see them at first, try the above fixes and get ready to mention on the reg.