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How to fix an Android camera that's not working

Person using camera on Android phone

Whether you're watching the sunset or attending your granddaughter's birthday party, there's never a good time for your Android™ camera to stop working. Maybe all you see is a black screen, or maybe the camera just won't take photos. Either way, we can help.

At Asurion, when tech breaks, we fix it—whether you need help resetting your Android phone to factory settings or freeing up storage space on your phone. Here's what to do if your Android camera isn't working.

Restart your Android phone

Sometimes all your phone needs is a simple restart to fix any bugs or glitches affecting the camera. The exact steps may vary depending on your device and Android version, but they'll go something like this:

  1. Press and hold the Power button (usually found on the right side of your phone) for several seconds.
  2. Wait until a menu appears on your screen. Select Restart to shut down your phone and turn it back on again.

Fully charge your phone

If the camera still isn't working on your Android, charge your phone to 100%. Then try using it again.

Confirm that the camera app has the necessary permissions

Your camera app needs authorizations, called “permissions," to allow it to function and save images to your device or the cloud. Occasionally, a recent app update can throw off these permissions. To fix it, follow these steps:

  1. Press and hold the Camera app, and tap the “i" button to open the App info menu.
  2. Go to the Permissions menu.
  3. Confirm that the Camera, Location, and Microphone permissions are allowed from the menu that follows. If they aren't, allow these permissions.

Close out other apps that are using the camera

Using your main camera app on Instagram® or Snapchat® is handy, but sometimes it can cause glitches. If this is your issue, troubleshooting is easy.

  1. If you use gesture navigations: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and hold until the recent apps menu appears.
  2. If you use button navigation: Tap on the recent apps button. Depending on your device, it will be to the left or right side of the home button.
  3. Swipe up (or left or right, depending on your phone) to close specific apps, like the camera app, or tap Close all, Clear all, or X to close all apps open in the background.
  4. Note that some phones may not have a Close all or similar button.
  5. Once you've closed the camera app, open it again to see if it's working.

Force quit the camera app

If your camera app has become unresponsive or if you see a camera error message on your screen, try force quitting the app. Here's how:

  1. Go to Settings > Apps.
  2. Tap the More settings icon (three-dot icon, upper right).
  3. Tap Show system apps.
  4. Find and tap the camera app.
  5. Tap Force Stop.

Update your Android operating system

Keeping your phone up to date fixes bugs and helps it run smoothly and securely. It can also improve the camera's performance. If you're not sure how to update your phone's operating system, check out our guide.

While you're at it, make sure you've updated your camera app to the latest version by going to Settings > About Camera.

Free up storage space

If the camera app for your Android phone still isn't working, your device may not have enough storage. To free up space, just uninstall apps you no longer use. Here's how (note that some of these steps only work on Android 13 and up).

Delete apps you installed

  1. Open the Google Play™ Store app.
  2. Tap the Profile icon at the top right.
  3. Tap Manage apps & devices > Manage.
  4. Tap the name of the app you want to delete, then tap Uninstall.

You can add back any apps you delete, including those you bought by downloading them again from the Play Store.

Disable apps that came on your phone

You can't delete some apps that come preinstalled on your Android phone. But you can disable them so that they no longer appear on your app list. Here's how:

Clear camera app cache

Clearing the cache from your camera app can help your phone work better and faster, and it may solve your camera glitches too. And don't worry, it won't delete your photos or related information. Here's how to clear the camera app's cache:

  1. Press and hold the Camera app, and tap the “i" button to open the app info menu.
  2. Go to the Storage & cache menu.
  3. Tap Clear cache. Try using your camera again.

If it's still not working, clear the app data.

  1. Tap Settings > Apps.
  2. Find and tap the Camera app.
  3. Tap Storage > Clear data.

Factory reset your Android phone

If you've tried all the troubleshooting steps above and your Android phone's camera still isn't working, it's time to try a factory reset. Check out our guide to learn how to factory reset your Android phone without losing important information.

If you've tried these steps and still need a little help, we're right around the corner. Schedule a repair at the nearest uBreakiFix® by Asurion or Asurion Tech Repair & Solutions™ store and our certified experts can get your device back up and running as soon as the same day.


*The Asurion® trademarks and logos are the property of Asurion, LLC. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Asurion is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by any of the respective owners of the other trademarks appearing herein.*

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