I would say: Don't render all available messages at once. Just render the latest 30 message and if the user wants to see older ones the user has to tap a "load older" button or you just load them when scroll panel reaches the near top.--
There is rarely a need to render everything up-front especially for messaging apps where conversations are rarely deleted by users and can become pretty long.
If you absolutely don't want that then you probably need to adjust your current mechanism of switching between group/contact list view and the messages view. You haven't said how you switch views, but I guess introducing a third actor that manage both group/contact and message view/presenters can solve your problem. For example if you use GWT Activity + Places you would map both ConversationsOverviewPlace and MessagesPlace to the same Activity. That Activity then manages your ConversationsOverviewActivity and MessagesActivity internally so you can do your own transition logic.
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