Monday, 26 June 2017

Most Common Android Problems And How To Fix Them

There’s no denying the fact that Android is a great operating system. But as great as it is, it’s not perfect. There are still multiple problems that you could face when running on Android. Luckily for you, though, not all these problems are unfixable. In fact, most of them can be fixed easily.

While there is no doubt that Android offers the most stability, reliability, and malware protection among any smartphone operating system, there are going to be times when you face problems.

But, Android is one of the leading smartphone OS’ in the world, and it would be a crime if you stayed away from one just because you were worried about problems. While there are tons of problems which you may face while using Android, there are also easy solutions on offer for each of the problems. We are going to take a look at a few of them here.

Before you get irritated and throw your Android device in the trash or head to the service center, there are a few things you could try on your own to fix most problems on your Android device. Who wants to go through the extra pain and effort of visiting a service center when you can fix it yourself, right? So give this article a read before you give up all hope and start thinking Android is the worst operating system in the world. It is not the end of the world yet, and hopefully, after reading this article, you will agree too.

There are just a few steps you need to follow in order to keep your smartphone in excellent running condition. Here are some of the problems you may face on your Android device along with easy fixes for each of them:

Google Play Store Crash

If your Google Play Store crashes once you launch it, you may just be dealing with a corrupt cache. Usually, a simple ‘clear cache’ will fix this problem. You can follow the below steps on most Android devices today:

– Go to settings > apps > the “all” tab
– Then find Google Play Store and select “wipe cache & data”
– Restart your phone, and you’re done.

If this doesn’t work then perhaps you should also consider wiping the cache for the below services:

– Google Play Services
– Google Services Framework

Don’t forget to restart your phone after both wipes.

Insufficient space

The Android OS allocates fixed storage space for each of its apps. Users are not able to expand this. So, you may just get this error even if your device shows that there is a ton of storage capacity remaining.

The easiest way of freeing up space on your device is by uninstalling the apps you don’t use. But, if you’re using music apps such as Spotify, you may find it difficult to locate exactly where they are being stored. The easiest way to free up space is with the help of a cleaner app like CCleaner. If you are trying to get a visual display of where all of your memory is being consumed, you could consider using DiskUsage. It will visually display all the locations and sizes of your files for easy viewing.

Not downloading apps

There are times when the Google Play store doesn’t let you install or download apps. There are a couple of very popular fixes for this problem. The first one involves wiping the cache for Google Play. The second is to simply erase its history.

Wiping the cache seems to be the best fix for this problem. Here’s how you do it:

– Go to settings > apps > the “all” tab
– Then find Google Play Store and select “wipe cache & data”
– Restart your phone, and you’re done.

You can also give the wiping history option a shot if you want:

– Go to the Play Store > Settings > Selection “Clear History”

Reinstalling Google Play Store

There is no way you are going to be able to uninstall the Google Play Store unless you have root access. This is not something a normal Android user will know about. So while most people think they’ve deleted Play Store, what they’ve actually done is just disabled it. There are many tutorials on the internet which can teach you how to enable it. A simple Google search will suffice here. Nonetheless, here are the steps:

– Go to Settings > Apps and then swipe right till you find the “disabled” tab.
– Find Google Play Store
– Click on “Reenable.”

Installing Google Play

If you get your hands on an imported tablet or smartphone, chances are it won’t have Google Play. Users will have to find an APK from third party sources if they want to install it on their devices. Before getting started, they will have to enable third party sources. Here’s how:

– Go to Settings > Security > Check the “Unknown Sources” box
– Once this is done, you will be able to install the store.

There are videos detailing this process on the internet as well. You can look at them if you want to make the process easier.

Older version of Play Store

Sometimes, the latest version of the Google Play Store might not work on your smartphone or tablet. In such cases, you could try installing older versions instead. You can find links for APK downloads of just about every major Play Store version on the internet. Just download one of them and use the above steps to install a compatible one instead.

Freeing up memory on Android

This is most probably RAM that you’re referring to. The Android OS works best when there are minimal applications installed. This is because there are some apps which run in the background even though you aren’t actually using them. The more the number of apps you have installed, the more the chances of some of them running in the background and eating up RAM. The easiest way of fixing this is by uninstalling all the apps you don’t use.

You shouldn’t consider using app killers as they can negatively impact the way many of your apps function. RAM boosters are just as bad. At first glance, they may seem like the most useful tool ever, but on closer inspection, you will notice that they’re actually harming your phone.

System UI unresponsive

Sometimes, the UI (User Interface) may stop working. If you can’t fix this issue with a simple restart, then you should try wiping the cache for the System UI. Here are the steps to get that done:

– Go to settings > apps > swipe to the “All” tab and choose “System UI”
– Wipe the cache.
– Restart your device.

Downloads aren’t working

There are times when downloads may just fail. Android has a dedicated download manager to take care of this, and sometimes its cache may get corrupted. In such cases, all you need to do is wipe it. Here’s how:

– Go to Settings > Apps > and then swipe to the “all” tab and choose “Download Manager.”
– Wipe the cache.
– Restart your device.

Can’t locate downloads

By default, Android stores all of your downloaded files in a folder labeled “Download.” In order to find this directory, the first thing you need to do is install one of the many file managers you find on the app store. Once you have installed one, go the “SD Card/Download” folder, and you should see a list of all the files you have downloaded till date.

Can’t play downloaded videos

You can start by trying to use the MX player or VLC player. They are capable of playing just about any file you can think of. Sometimes, videos which are in proprietary formats won’t play though. There isn’t a solution for such issues apart from installing the video player which supports the proprietary format.

Accidentally installed malware

You should never install cracked apps or games onto your Android device. In most cases, it will come with malware. But if your phone already has malware, all you need to do is uninstall the app it came with. If you aren’t sure which app it is that is wreaking havoc on your smartphone, try using a malware scanner. Lookout is one of the best Malware scanners out there and should easily be able to find the untrustworthy app. It is lightweight, free, and great at what it does.

Internet not working

One of the main causes of your mobile internet not working is having poorly configured APN settings. If you are using prepaid plans for internet access, chances are you will need to set up an APN before you can use mobile data. If the settings aren’t configured properly, you will need to set them manually. If you have signed up for an MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator) which leases spectrum, you will have to configure the APN settings of your phone as well.

Can’t connect to WiFi

The chances are your router is to blame in this instance. There are a whole lot of problems that you could be facing with your WiFi router and the easiest solution at times is to simply restart your phone and your router. If this doesn’t work, troubleshooting the router is your best bet.

Breaking Android password

If you have set a password on your Android device and subsequently forgotten it, you are going to need to perform a factory reset using the bootloader. The bootloader is a preboot environment which lets you restore your operating system to the way it was when you got the phone. There are multiple tutorials on breaking Android passwords offered on the internet too, but you shouldn’t count on them.

The first thing you will have to do is get into the bootloader. The method will vary depending on the type of phone you use. For most phones, you can access it by powering the device down completely. Once you power off the device, hold down your volume down and power button to boot the device. Once you are inside the bootloader, you can easily factory reset the device.

Just remember not to try this if you have a custom ROM. It will render the device unbootable.

Android crashes on boot

If your phone isn’t booting, you can use “safe mode” to recover your device. Safe mode will let you disable all your startup apps, one of which will be the one crashing your phone. Once you have booted in safe mode, you can remove the app which is misbehaving. If you are not being able to start your phone, this is one way you may just be able to.

Android device doesn’t come on

The first thing you should do is try to take out the battery. If the battery cannot be removed, hold the power button down for 15 seconds. If this fails, plug the device into power and then hold it down for 15 seconds. If this fails as well, you will need to go to a service center.

There is only one way of turning your phone on, and that is with the power button. If that doesn’t work, you are fresh out of options.

Android doesn’t read microSD card

This happens on many occasions. Formatting the SD card is the easiest solution here. But, this solves only a part of the issue with SD cards. If you haven’t tried this solution yet, give it a shot:

– Go to settings > storage > choose “Format SD card.”
– Select “Format SD card” again from the list of options.

If this doesn’t work, you will have to connect the SD card with a card reader to recover your data. If your files can’t be read even after you connect it to a PC, you will need to use one of the data recovery software available today. There are many effective software available for free. Just pick up any one of them.

Can’t connect Android to Windows PC

There are a couple of ways in which Android devices can connect with a computer. ADB (Android Debug Bridge) is one of them, and the other is MTP (Media Transfer Protocol). ADB allows users to interact with the operating system of Android while MTP just lets you access specially designated storage directories. ADB causes the maximum amount of problems. But, it is quite useful when it comes to sending commands to the Android device from a PC. For beginners, there are many guides on the internet that will help them learn how to use ADB.

If nothing else is working and you have run out of ideas and suggestions, the last resort is to perform a factory reset. This is the Android equivalent of a nuclear option. Here’s how it’s done:

– Go to settings > “Backup & Reset”
– Choose reset from the bottom of this window


Android is supposed to be one of the most robust operating systems in the world right now. As compared to Windows, it is more or less immune to any sort of malicious software. Don’t misunderstand though as it still has a ton of malware for you to watch out for. It is also very easy to recover from almost any software fault as you would have noticed above.

All you really need to do is press a few buttons, and your problems will be solved. It doesn’t get easier than that, does it? So if you were wondering whether you should buy an Android phone or if you are facing trouble with your Android phone, the tips and suggestions provided here should satisfy any problems/doubts that you may have. However, if you still find yourself scratching your head, bring your phone to a Samsung Melbourne dealer near you.


TelcoWorld Corp. - Known as Beltz's Mobile Phones & Repairs Moorabbin


Monday, 19 June 2017

Most Common Causes of Broken Phones

It’s sometimes hard to imagine life before smartphones. They provide us with communication and entertainment, and they’re increasingly finding use as work devices; people often feel lost when they lose their phone or if it stops working correctly. However, smartphones are small and have many vulnerable parts, and it’s common for components to eventually break. While repairing a phone is difficult, it’s often possible with the right knowledge and tools. Here are a few of the most common ways smartphones break, what you can do to avoid problems, and how you can get your phone back up and running.

Cracked Screens

It’s every smartphone owner’s nightmare: a cracked screen. Today’s smartphone screens are far more durable than those of the past, and many can survive moderate falls unscathed. If the phone strikes the ground at just the right angle, however, cracks can quickly propagate across the screen, making your phone difficult to use and potentially making the screen unusable. External phones cases can provide a bit of protection, although none are able to fully prevent cracks. Practicing good habits can help as well, as avoiding high-risk scenarios can help prevent falls in the first place. However, people use phones so frequently that drops can seem all but inevitable.

Fortunately, the frequency of cracked screens means there are plenty of replacement screens on the market, and experts can replace screens in a fairly short period of time. While replacement screens are easier to find for popular phones models, even uncommon phones typically have replacement options available. Replacement screens aren’t always cheap, but restoring your favorite phone’s screen is far more economical than buying a new device.

Water Damage

Increasingly, manufacturers are offering phones designed to withstand water damage. Through tight manufacturing protocols and plugs for ports, manufacturers can create phones that can handle being submerged for extended periods of time. Surprisingly, even phones not listed as water-resistant can often survive submersion if they’re dried off in a timely manner. Unfortunately, prolonged submersion can cause damage to most smartphones, even some that are rated as resistant. Attentiveness is the best way to avoid water damage; check your pockets before hopping into a pool.

The problem with water damage comes from the electronic components within the phone itself. It’s best to leave your device unplugged and turned off for an extended period of time before powering it on again to avoid short-circuits that can destroy internal components. Some people recommend placing your phone in a bag of rice if it’s been damaged by water, but rice won’t decrease the drying time and can cause problems through dust. If your phone still won’t power on even after it’s been dried, have it inspected by an expert, as some electronic problems are easy to fix. Unfortunately, a damaged motherboard or other component can lead to expensive repairs, and replacement parts might simply be unavoidable.

Damaged Charging Port

Phones are only useful if they have power, but charging ports can become damaged. Because charging ports are frequently connected and disconnected through daily use, mechanical damage is always possible. Furthermore, the electricity that travels through charger ports is greater than many people imagine, and short circuits or other electrical problems can lead to permanent damage. Accidentally kicking a port’s cable can lead to physical damage as well. Be careful when connecting and disconnecting cables, and try to avoid hitting cables when moving.

Because charging ports aren’t integrated within the motherboard itself, it’s often possible to desolder them and solder in a replacement port, although availability varies based on the device, with more popular devices having more options available. Furthermore, it’s important to rely on expert help, as a misconnected wire can cause damage to other parts of the phone, potentially rendering it unfixable. It’s also critical to ensure the port is appropriately secured in place to prevent further damage in the future.

Scratched Screens

One of the areas where smartphones have advanced significantly is in their screens. Today’s screens are far harder than those on older smartphones, and they’re less likely to become scratched. Still, contact with materials harder than the screen itself can lead to unsightly scratches, and some of the materials that can cause damage are surprising. Metal, for example, is softer than the glass on smartphone screens; no matter how sharp a metal knife is, it can’t scratch a screen, so don’t worry about keys damaging a phone. Sand, on the other hand, is often harder than glass, so be careful when wiping away sand to avoid creating scratches. Ceramic materials and diamonds are potential sources of damage as well, and they don’t require much force to cause scratches.

There are a number of purported fixes for scratched smartphone screens, and some companies provide commercial solutions. The complex nature of modern screens, however, means results from these solutions can be mixed. Fixing a scratch involves removing a thin layer of glass to create a smooth surface, so these remedies won’t work on deep scratches. Remember that you always have the option of having the screen replaced by an expert.

Faulty Speaker

While smartphones typically fulfill a number of roles, nearly everyone uses their smartphone for at least one purpose: phone calls. However, smartphone speakers, both those used for phone calls and those used to play music or other sounds, are vulnerable, and water, electrical problems, and other issues can render them unusable. Apps that attempt to raise the volume level of speakers can potentially lead to blown speakers, so stick to headphones or exterior speakers for loud listening.

Fortunately, there are replacement speakers available for many popular smartphones, so it’s often possible to get your phone back up and running without purchasing a new one. Again, it’s important to rely on expert help, as even the act of opening your phone can lead to damage that’s impossible to repair. Wiring is also critical, as a crossed wire can damage your new speakers or cause interference within the phone.

Damaged Exterior

Phones are designed to withstand regular use, but some are more durable than others. The materials used can also dictate what damage the phone is vulnerable to. A glass exterior, for example, will be great at avoiding scratches but may be vulnerable to cracks. Metal is tough, but it can become dented. Plastic tends to be one of the toughest materials, but it can become scratched or even chipped.

Remember that all phones are vulnerable to damage even if they’re marketed as rugged. One of the greatest uses of cases is preventing damage to a phone’s exterior, so determine if preserving your phone’s look is more important than avoiding the bulk of a case. Unfortunately, replacement exteriors for phones can be hard to find and difficult to use, but adding a case to a damaged phone can restore its structural integrity.

Damaged Operating System

Smartphones are computers, and they rely on complex operating systems to run. While major operating systems are thoroughly tested malware and data corruption can cause a phone to become unusable. Keep your data backed up, as a corrupt operating system can make it impossible to access. Be especially careful when updating your phone’s software, as power losses and resets can leave the phone in an inoperable state.

Phones vary, but it’s sometimes possible to reflash the operating system with the right tools, essentially performing a factory reset. Doing so, however, will cause you to lose your phone’s data, so it’s often worth talking with an expert to find out if there are other ways to restore functionality. In some cases, you might even be able to replace your phone’s built-in storage, which can be a smart choice if it’s become damaged.

Smartphones are powerful devices, but they’re also complex, and the failure of nearly any component can make your phone unusable. Phones are typically designed to be small, not easy to service, and replacing items often involves removing strong glue and soldering parts into place. While repairs are difficult, they’re often doable with the right expertise and experience. Before writing a phone off as permanently broken, make sure to talk with an expert to find out if it can be repaired.


TelcoWorld Corp. - Known as Beltz's Mobile Phones & Repairs Moorabbin


Tuesday, 13 June 2017

How to Save Money by Purchasing A Used Phone

Buying a used phone is a great idea to bring yourself into the smartphone world at a super low price. Many of the brand-new entry level phones are not that much more powerful than that used budget phone from a couple years back. These older phones also do not have annoying contracts to go along with them, leaving you with the independent to shop around with carriers (assuming it is unlocked).

Although the word ‘used’ has a bit of a shameful sound to it, consider that all phones will be ‘used’ eventually. Once you buy a used phone in good shape, nobody will be able to tell that you bought it from a random teenager through an auction website. In fact, you may be able to enjoy the phone when it is still in-season and resell it for little to no loss. Keeping in fashion with brand new phones will also force you to lose a significant amount of money considering that phones quickly drop in value.

A problem with used phones is that you are not protected by the carrier or manufacturer. If something goes wrong, it is your responsibility to perform maintenance, repairs, or just replace the thing. If you frequently run into issues with your used phones, it may just end up costing you more money than what a brand-new phone would have cost.

However, if you plan your purchase wisely, you may end up with a real bargain that will last for months or years. Changing phones frequently is an expensive habit, so you will at least be able to save some money by going the used route. This article will detail certain facts that you must be aware of to avoid purchasing a lemon of a phone.

Know the correct price!

Using Amazon or Ebay completed listings, you should get an idea of what the fair market value is for the phone that you had in mind. If a phone is listed well below the average price, make sure that the listing is not really for accessories or a broken phone. If it otherwise appears normal, there is a chance that it is a scam or a stolen phone.

You should also do deep market research to make sure that there are no cheaper phones on the market. Some phones will have a higher price simply because of the brand name. In fact, some phones will have the same CPU, GPU, or screen as the expensive Samsung Galaxy but may end up being half of its price. Chinese companies also produce budget lines of phones that may be considered as a replacement alternative.

On auction type websites like Ebay, it is normal for prices to start very low, but then they will usually return to the mean price. If you would like to score a phone in an auction at a significant discount, hunt for auctions that end in late or early hours on weekdays to decrease competition.

Know how to sniff out shady sellers.

The internet allows us to have a layer of anonymity that we had never had before. Because of this, there are many slimy people on the internet who have no problem scamming or lying to you.

The first red flag would be if the seller has little to no feedback on the website. Anybody could use photos from another listing to create their own listing to scam your money. The seller may also simply just refuse to post pictures because they are ashamed of something and want to sell their damaged phone as-is.

Speaking of pictures, you will want to make sure that they are legitimate. Save the pictures and use them with the reverse search in Google Images. If the search produces results from other websites, you know that the seller must have copied them from another source. If this is the case, simply report their account and move on to the next listing.

Inspect the phone.

If you are buying a phone off of Craigslist or other local classifieds, make sure that you meet up with the person and have a thorough look at the phone. Asking questions may help, but ultimately a scammer may just be lying to your face since this sort of transaction is not regulated.

Bring your own charging cable and a source to charge the phone. Sometimes a seller may be trying to hide something if they do not bring along a charging cable. Perhaps the charging port is broken. It is possible that the battery is starting to fail. If the user brings the phone after the battery had died, you now have the opportunity to charge the device to see what secrets he is hiding.

Bring a laptop with to check its ability to sync via USB. The laptop will also serve as a power source if an outlet is not available in the meeting area.

Bring your own microSD card with. To make sure that there is no issue with the card reader, have the phone read your own card. It is not uncommon for a seller to bring phones without an inserted SD card since they want to save their old photos. It should still be considered that this is yet another thing faulty with the phone.

You may also bring a working pair of headphones to make sure the audio is still functional. Even if the internal speakers still work, the headphone jack may still be destroyed.

Bring a third-party SIM card to make sure that it is working for your carrier. If the phone was advertised as unlocked, this will now your opportunity to call them out on it. If the phone is from the same carrier as your SIM, you can use friend’s card to test it out.

Evaluate The Cost To Fix It

A way to capitalize on broken phones is to fix them up into working devices. You must evaluate the damage to see if it is worth fixing or if you will just have an expensive paper weight. Broken phones are widely available on Ebay and certain models will have very low competition when it comes to bidding.

Before putting in bids, Fully evaluate the types of damage done to the phone. If the damage is not clear, message the buyer and ask if he knows what is still working on the phone. If the phone can charge and can turn on but just has a cracked screen, it may be a bargain. If a phone refuses to turn on, there is a high probability that this phone would bee too expensive to repair.

Just do basic math with market research on how much it would cost to repair the extent of the damage. For example, if a cracked screen phone cost $50 and the screen repair was $50, then you will have $100 total in this phone. If the used price of this phone is normally $150, then you would have saved a great deal of money. If the market value of the phone is $90, then you would have just wasted your time. If you are confident in your own skills, you can save even more money by purchasing parts and doing the labor yourself.

It is highly recommended that you use a service like TelcoWorld since smartphone internals are extremely easy to break. Just opening up one of these phones has a high chance of breaking internal components and connecting cables. The iPhone, in particular, is an extremely delicate phone that is very difficult to open up without the proper parts.

Keep in mind, buying a used phone is highly unlikely to retain any possible manufactured warranty. If you buy a used phone through an authorized dealer or as a manufacturer refurbished phone, you will retain the warranty with certain manufacturers.


TelcoWorld Corp. - Known as Beltz's Mobile Phones & Repairs Moorabbin