How to Fix Google Pixel Problems

Troubleshoot all your Google Pixel problems

Photograph of human hand holding a Google Pixel in white with the display blank.

Unknown/CC0/Pxhere 

The Google Pixel and Pixel XL haven't been problem-free. Known hardware issues have affected some devices, while software updates have created problems of their own. That's not to mention the headaches caused when apps go rogue. No matter which Google Pixel problems you face, though, we've got you covered.

Instructions in this article apply to Android 8.0 and later.

Google Pixel Wi-Fi Problems

It's not a unique problem to the Pixel, but if you find yourself unable to connect to Wi-Fi, or you're experiencing drops in connectivity, there are steps you can work through to get your Pixel connected again.

  1. Restart your Wi-Fi connection by going to Settings > Network & Internet and toggling Wi-Fi off and on again.

  2. Remove the network you're attempting to connect to in Settings > Network & Internet > Wi-Fi > Saved Networks, then tap and hold on the chosen network and tap Forget. You can then connect to the network as if for the first time.

  3. To completely reset all network connections and settings, navigate to Settings > System > Reset options > Reset Wi-Fi, Mobile & Bluetooth. This will restore all network settings to their defaults, clear saved networks, and remove connected Bluetooth devices.

  4. Restart your Pixel. Long press the power button on the right side of your device to display the power menu, then tap Restart.

  5. If other devices on the network are experiencing issues, it may not be a problem with your Pixel. To rule this out, restart your router and modem.

Google Pixel Issues With Bluetooth Connectivity

Not long after the phone's release, users reported they were unable to connect the Pixel to their Bluetooth devices, including many in-car systems. These Bluetooth issues occasionally reappear after system updates, including the most recent update to Android 9.0 Pie.

  1. Reset your Pixel's Bluetooth connection. Navigate to Settings > Connected devices > Connection preferences > Bluetooth and toggle Bluetooth off and on again. You should also restart Bluetooth on the device you're connecting to.

  2. If you've successfully connected to the device in the past, it will be saved in Settings > Connected devices > Previously connected devices. Locate the device you're experiencing difficulty with and tap the Settings icon. This will display options for that device. Tap Forget to remove the device. If the Bluetooth device also has the option to remove connected devices, then remove the Pixel. This will allow you to attempt a connection to the device as if for the first time.

  3. Restart your Pixel. Long press the power button on the right side of your device to display the power menu and tap Restart.

  4. To completely reset all Bluetooth connections and settings, navigate to Settings > System > Reset options > Reset Wi-Fi, Mobile & Bluetooth. This will restore all Bluetooth settings to their defaults and remove connected devices.

    This will also reset all other network settings to their defaults and remove saved Wi-Fi networks.

  5. Check for any system updates. Google issues monthly security updates alongside their annual operating system upgrades. Many of these updates also include bug fixes and may contain a fix for your issue. Navigate to Settings > System > Advanced > System update and tap Check for update and install any available updates.

  6. If the problem persists, perform a factory reset of your Pixel. This will remove all files, apps, and settings, so ensure you've fully backed up your device before performing the reset. To begin, navigate to Settings > System > Advanced > Reset options and tap Erase all data (factory reset).

Pixel Camera Issues

With so many people relying on their smartphones to capture the special and everyday moments of their lives, a problem with the camera can feel more than just inconvenient. Fortunately, there are a few troubleshooting steps that can get you back to taking your favorite pictures in no time.

  1. The Camera app may be the cause of the problem and has been known to experience crashes after app updates. To restart the app, navigate to Settings > Apps & notifications and expand the list to see all installed apps listed alphabetically. Tap the Camera app, then tap Force stop. On the same screen, tap Storage > Clear storage > Clear cache. This will remove any stored data in the app, and reset all settings back to their defaults.

  2. Restart your Pixel. Long press the power button on the right side of your device to display the power menu and tap Restart.

  3. Check for any app updates in the Play Store. Open the Play Store from your apps list, then swipe in from the left to display the navigation menu and tap My apps & games. This will open the Updates tab where you can see all available app updates.

  4. If your photos haven't been saving, or have been corrupted during saving, you may be out of storage space. You can check this in Settings > Storage. Consider enabling Smart Storage to allow the system to automatically clear space when your storage is almost full. If your device is almost full, tap Free up space to locate files you may wish to delete.

  5. If the problem is related to image quality, the camera hardware may be at fault. Ensure the camera lens is clean and free of dirt, debris, or grease. You can enable a dirty lens warning, which will display on your screen when using the camera app. Open the Camera app, then swipe along the bottom menu to More. Navigate to Settings > Advanced, then toggle Show dirty lens warning on.

  6. If after troubleshooting the camera and image quality the problem persists, there may be a hardware fault. Contact Google Support to investigate further options.

Unresponsive or Intermittent Microphone

Just a few months after the Pixel's release, Google confirmed reports of a microphone hardware fault caused by "a hairline crack in the solder connection on the audio codec." However, there may be other reasons your microphone isn't working, so it's worth troubleshooting first.

  1. Check for anything blocking access to the microphone on your handset. The Pixel's microphone is located underneath the screen, next to the USB-C charging port. This area is prone to dust and debris build up, and this could be blocking the microphone. Try removing any cases you have on your phone, especially third-party variations.

  2. If you noticed the issue in one app, check other apps that require the microphone for the same issue. If the problem is isolated to one app, uninstall the affected app and reinstall from the Play Store.

  3. Restart your Pixel. Long press the power button on the right side of your device to display the power menu, then tap Restart.

  4. Test if the microphone can record any sound. Use an audio recording app to record a segment of audio. Include quiet and loud noises to test the full range of the microphone. A damaged or malfunctioning microphone might still pick up some sound.

  5. If the microphone is still unresponsive, your Pixel may suffer from the known hairline crack in the solder connection. In their response to the issue, Google committed to replacing affected devices. Contact Google Support to discuss the problem.

Pixel Overheating

Picking up your smartphone and finding it searingly hot is hugely alarming. Given that it's not unheard of for smartphone batteries to explode or catch fire, it's understandably worrying if your Google Pixel suddenly overheats. However, it may not be a battery fault causing your phone to overheat, and could be an app causing the problem.

  1. If your Pixel only overheats while charging, the charger itself may be at fault. Switch your current charger for a new one, preferably a Pixel charger supplied by Google. Try connecting the charger to different outlets too to rule out faulty power outlets.

  2. Your overheating phone may be caused by a phone case or the inside of a warm pocket. Try giving your phone some ventilation; remove any cases and store at room temperature. 

  3. Heavy phone usage will cause the Pixel to get warm, especially power-intensive tasks like video streaming or gaming. In this case, turn off the Pixel and allow it to cool. If the phone doesn't get overly hot during regular light usage, then it's likely normal heat given off by high power consumption.

  4. Your Pixel may overheat even when you aren't running demanding apps. However, an app could still be at fault. An app drawing too much power may cause the phone to overheat, and will appear to use a large percentage of the battery. Navigate to Settings > Battery, tap the three dots at the top right of the screen, then tap Battery usage. This will list apps that have used the battery since the last full charge. If there's an app consuming a large percentage of the battery, then it may be the cause. Try uninstalling the affected app and reinstall from the Play Store.

  5. Some Pixel and Pixel XL users noted their Pixel charger no longer provided fast charging after the update to Android 9.0 Pie. Google confirmed that some non-power delivery chargers are affected and released a patch in October 2018. Although there are no related reports to overheating devices, if all other troubleshooting fails, you should contact Google Support to discuss the issue.

Google Pixel Battery Life and Excessive Battery Drain

One of the Google Pixel's strengths is its 2770mAh battery and battery-optimized software. Since its release, however, there have been multiple reports of software updates causing battery drain issues, but it could just as easily be misbehaving apps.

  1. Close all open apps. To view running apps, tap the Square at the bottom of the screen. Swipe an app up to close it, or swipe right until you reach the end, then tap Clear all to remove all running apps.
  2. Restart your Pixel. Long press the power button on the right side of your device to display the power menu, then tap Restart.
  3. Navigate to Settings > Battery, tap the three dots at the top right of the screen, then tap Battery usage to view battery usage by app since the last full charge. If you notice any unusual or infrequently used apps towards the top of the list, uninstall them to see if they're the root of the excessive battery drain.
  4. Since the Pixel's release, some users have noted that certain Android features misbehave after a system update. Adaptive Brightness has been known to malfunction and uses an excessive amount of battery. To turn this feature off, head to Settings > Display > Adaptive Brightness and toggle the feature off.
  5. If the problem persists, perform a Factory Reset of your Pixel. This will remove all files, apps, and settings, so ensure you've fully backed up your device before performing the reset. To begin, navigate to Settings > System > Advanced > Reset options, then tap Erase all data (factory reset).
  1. If, after a factory reset, the problem still occurs, contact Google Support to discuss a potential hardware fault.