How to Solve the 42 Most Common Problems with Android Phones

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Your Android phone is a useful tool, but like any other device, it is not perfect. It will send you frustrating error messages from time to time. Here is a guide for troubleshooting 42 of the most common ones.

1. Curbing data usage when abroad

Android users often face the problem of costly data usage. Going overseas for a holiday exacerbates the problem.

A third party app called APNroid allows you to turn off your data connections via an on-screen widget. It acts as a reminder to use your carrier’s network wisely when you travel abroad.

2. Freezing

Anyone is apt to feel annoyed when their Android apps refuse to open. Having your phone’s screen frozen is frustrating, especially when you need it at once.

A soft reset of the phone will usually get it running again, but some Android models need the help of a third party app to start working. An example of this is Fast Reboot, an app which triggers the soft reset process. It also closes operations.

3. Difficulty Downloading Apps from the Google Play store

google-play

Software designers created some applications to conform to certain screen resolutions. A sophisticated Android phone will support more apps than one that is less so. However, you may have problems downloading apps if yours uses a landscape display. Do not worry about such compatibility issues, as the majority of apps are available for most phones.

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4. Faulty WFI Connection

If you have problems connecting your phone to your WIFI network, navigate to Wireless and Networks/Wi-Fi Settings and press the menu key. Select Advanced and then the “Never” sleep policy. Doing this should keep your WIFI connection active.

5. Running out of Memory

If your phone’s memory runs out, it may mean that your cache is too full to run apps efficiently. Use an app like Cache Cleaner, which tidies your phone’s cache and frees up memory.

Bear in mind that using a cache cleaner does not guarantee that your phone will store apps. You will still have to delete the apps you use less often to free up data storage space.

6. Unrecognizable SD Card

Viruses or other unwanted data may have corrupted your SD card, so you may have to reformat it with your computer. On Windows File Explorer, right-click your mouse and select the format option. Your PC will work better than your phone to restore your SD card.

7. Problems viewing the phone in sunlight

Anti-glare screen protectors are the best solutions for this problem. They are stronger than standard screen protectors and reduce the amount of glare that hits the screen. They may not eliminate glare completely but do decrease it.

8. Difficulty Using the Keyboard

The default Android keyboard is not user-friendly, but there are many third-party keyboards available. Sidelit, for example, allows a user to type without leaving the screen.

9. Games Play Slowly

Some phones may have slower processors, causing graphics to take more time to load. When buying a phone, test it to see how fast its operating system loads. You will need a phone with a faster system if you are an avid gamer.

10. Removing apps

Do your apps refuse to disappear when you delete them? Go to Settings/ Applications/ Manage Applications, then choose the app that you wish to remove. Click on the uninstall icon, and it will vanish at once.

11. Cracked Screen

You may have crashed your phone and cracked its screen, but there is no need to fret. Some online retailers sell phone parts. Since installing a phone screen is not an easy process, you may want to approach the manufacturer or a third-party retail shop to do it for you.

You may try to repair it yourself, though this takes some effort. Sites like ifixit.com have tutorials to guide you through the process. All you need to do is select the phone model, and you are on your way.

12. Entering Password

password-on-android-phones

Entering passwords on older Android phones may take a long time, but you can hasten the process by navigating to Settings/Security/Setup/Screen Lock. You can enter a pattern instead of a password, which is faster and more secure.

13. Flashing LEDs

Flashing LEDs on your phone can be rather annoying. Stopping LED notifications is straightforward. Go to Settings/Display/Notifications/Flash and remove all the ticks.

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14. Clearing Data

To remove phone data, navigate to Settings/SD and phone storage. Run the process twice to make sure that you have deleted everything.

15. Data Monitoring

If your phone uses too much data, you may need the help of a software application to monitor your use. My Data Manager is the solution you need; it tells you how much data your phone has been using. The program alerts you when your phone has used up a specified amount of data or needs more storage space.

16. Not being able to see the Android Market

Your phone or tablet may come with an app market which may block the Android market. The version of the Android market installed on it may be incompatible with the device. Alternatively, the hardware mounted on it may be too old.

If you own an older phone model, you may have to rely on an older version of the Android App Market. To install it, go to your Google Play Store App and open its settings. You will see the build number and the bottom, and that is the version of the App you have.

Rely on a trusted source, like android.com to obtain a Google Play APK. Choose an older APK that is compatible with your phone. You can download it on your device or laptop. Transfer it to a file location that you will remember if you have downloaded it to your computer.

17. Water Damage

If you have dropped your phone in water, take its battery out and dry it as soon as possible. Leave it for 72 hours in a cool, dry area and try it again. This solution is not foolproof but may work.

18. Kindle Books look garbled

Your Kindle downloads may look messy on your Android phone if you are using a custom Kindle ROM (Read-Only Memory). Refer to your ROM provider for a solution. If he does not have one, you may have to use a standard ROM to read your books.

19. Paid apps unaccounted for

If you are using a new phone and do not see your paid applications, check your Google Market Account to see if they are compatible with your phone. If you still do not see your apps after a system update, you may not have linked your phone to your account. Contact Market Support.

20. Setting Minimum Age for Apps

There may be apps that you may not want your curious child to access. Navigate to the market app and press the menu key. Select settings, then content filtering. Pick the apps you want to allow on your phone.

21. Inaccurate touch screen

touch-screen

Calibrating the phone on an Android screen is close to impossible. If you tap the wrong part of your phone’s screen, try rebooting it. If that does not work, restore its factory settings or contact Android support.

22. Automatic App Update

To update apps automatically, visit the Market App. Go to “My Apps” and select the app that you have not updated yet. You will see an option, roughly halfway down the screen that allows automatic updates.

23. Hiding search history

You may want to keep your browsing activities private. To protect your phone’s search history, visit www.google.com/history in your Android browser. Login and remove your searches. Remember not to save any future searches via this page.

24. Problems capturing Screenshots

Samsung phones will let you click on the back key and press the home button twice to capture screenshots.

If you use another type of phone, you will have to use the Android Development Kit. Open it from your phone’s start menu. If you have installed the Android SDK for all users, select Run as Administrator.

Select the Android SDK Platform Tools Box and install it. It contains the ADB (Android Debug Bridge) utility, which you will need to capture screenshots.

Then, configure USB debugging on your phone. You will need to download your phone’s drivers from your manufacturer. They will come installed with a software package. Then, enable USB debugging by navigating to the Settings screen, tapping Applications, Development, and selecting the USB debugging text box.

Capturing screenshots with an Android phone is not a simple process, so be patient.

25. Downloading music

Amazon MP3, available on the Android market, is the ideal choice for installing music It sends MP3 files straight from your phone. There is no need for a PC.

26. Upgrading an Android Phone

Not all manufacturers allow users to upgrade to the latest version of Android software, but doing so is still possible if you use a custom ROM. Do some research before installing one.

27. Enlarging Text

Users often complain about small font sizes. Navigate to the app you want to use, then choose the “set text size” option. The Android App market has alternatives for increasing text size as well.

28. Installing apps to an SD card

installing-apps-to-sd-card

Some apps may not install on your phone’s SD card automatically. Using the Manage Application function in Settings/Applications will set them in place. Manual intervention may help as well.

29. Changing the Phone’s Language

To use another language on your phone, navigate to Settings/Language, then Keyboard. Choose your desired language. Be aware that some apps work well only in US English, but these are few.

30. Removing pre-installed apps

You may not be satisfied with the apps on your phone and want to remove them. To do so, download an app called Root Uninstaller. This app saves your phone’s memory, but note that it may make your phone unstable.

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31. Slow Phone

These days, people expect instant gratification. A slow phone can make you feel frazzled. Try removing the apps that you do not use. Doing this frees up data storage space.

Apps such as Set CPU will overclock your phone’s processor and speed it up. They also slow down your processor to free up memory. Others, like System Tuner Pro, adjust your phone to ensure the best possible performance. Be careful when using such apps; you run the risk of overworking your processor and burning it out.

32. Stopping Virus Attacks

With everyone using a phone, mobile security is becoming a huge issue. It is common to install apps to protect phones. Software like Kaspersky Mobile Security defends them against virus threats.

33. Inaccurate Map Location

Your phone may not always indicate your position on maps. When this happens, go to Settings/Location and check GPS satellites. Your navigation will improve.

34. Disturbing LED Flashes

Flashing LED notifications are overly bright and annoying. To disable them, navigate to Settings/Display/Notification and remove the checks from all the options. The LED lights on your phone should stop blinking.

35. Quiet Phone Volume

Some Android phones are uncomfortably soft, which can be a hassle when you are trying to view an important video. Apps like Audio Boost, available from the Android market, can increase your phone’s volume by up to 30%.

36. Changing your phone’s look

You may not be comfortable with your phone’s interface for practical or aesthetic reasons. You can modify the look of your phone with apps like LauncherPro. It Introduces a new interface which includes 3D effects and a shortcut dock. It does not alter your phone’s ROM at all.

37. Wallpaper Using too much Battery

Live wallpapers are notorious for draining phone battery. They can be a problem if they cause your phone to lose power quickly. Static wallpaper deals with this issue.

38. Your Phone’s Clock Loses Time

Your phone’s integrated clock may lose time if you set it to update using your network settings. It will slow down if you do not configure the one on your system correctly. Navigate to Settings/Date/Time, make sure that you have not checked the Automatic option, and your clock should run on time.

39. Blocking Unwanted CallersĀ 

Network providers do not enable phones to block unwanted callers but do not fret. Most Android phones are adjustable. Extreme Call Blocker Droid, which works with many types of Android phones, blocks unwanted calls.

40. Not Being Able to Use Your Phone’s SD card when You Attach it to a PC

You may have already rooted your phone, but you can use an app like a Multi-Mount SD-Card, which enables access to expansion cards from phones and computers at once. It also deals with the issue of corrupted files.

41. Stolen Phone

Getting a stolen phone returned to you can be a struggle. Rely on a third-party app to track its location. An app like Phone Locator Pro tracks your phone using GPS. It also clears data from your device should you lose it.

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42. Closing a Stubborn App

Some apps may cause your phone to freeze when you open them. Navigate to Settings/Applications, then Manage Applications. Select the recalcitrant app and tap “Force Stop.” If that does not work, try uninstalling and reinstalling it.

Problems with your Android phone are not unsolvable. These tips will show you how to navigate your phone should problems occur, and help you correct them.

This is a guest post.