How to Fix a "Failed to Obtain IP Address" Android Error

There are many causes of this common error

When you're trying to get on a Wi-Fi network or use the internet with your mobile, the last thing you want to see is the "Failed to Obtain IP Address" on your Android device.

This error usually appears when you're attempting to connect to any Wi-Fi network, even if it's your home network. What it means is that the router that manages the network can get an IP address for your Android device.

This issue not only prevents you from using that network to access the internet, but you also can't access any other network resources like printers, wireless displays, or streaming devices.

The directions below generally apply to any Android phone regardless of brand, including: Samsung, Google, LG, Motorola, and more. Each device may have slightly different menu options, however. You'll find any significant differences noted.

Cause of "Failed to Obtain IP Address" Android Error

There are many reasons you may see this error on your Android device when you try to connect to a network. The most common source of the error is a router issue. Either your device was intentionally blocked, or the connection problem is due to a router problem.

It's also possible that your Android's own network hardware or software is malfunctioning or corrupt. You can walk through the steps below to troubleshoot, starting from the most likely causes to the least likely scenario.

How to Fix "Failed to Obtain IP Address" Android Error

Since the router is usually the most common issue with this error, the troubleshooting should start there. Once you've confirmed the router isn't the issue, you can move on to troubleshooting your own Android device.

  1. If you're on someone else's network, ask them to remove the MAC filter for your device. They should also confirm there aren't any parental controls set up to block your device from accessing the internet. If the network and router is yours, then connect to your router as an administrator and make sure both of those features are turned off for your Android device.

    If you're seeing this error while trying to connect to a corporate Wi-Fi network, it's likely that you need IT approval before you can use the wireless network. If it's a public Wi-Fi hotspot like at a coffee shop, then the router is most likely not the cause of this error.

  2. Make sure your router's built-in firewall isn't inadvertently causing issues. If you aren't the only person experiencing the "Failed to Obtain IP Address" error, there's a chance that someone either recently enabled or changed the wireless router's built-in firewall. It's also possible the firewall software stopped working properly. Try checking whether the router firewall is enabled, and test disabling it to see if that resolves the error.

  3. Change your router's network encryption. If the router is currently configured to use AES or TKIP encryption, those encryption types are known to cause problems with certain devices. changing network encryption to WPA2-PSK often resolves those issues.

  4. Restart the router. If everything on the router checks out fine, restarting it will re-initialize the internal software and clear any potential cache issues. If rebooting doesn't work and multiple people are still seeing the same error when connecting to the wireless network, it may be time to reset the router instead.

    Keep in mind that resetting a router also resets all of the customized settings that were made after the router was first installed. Before resetting, make sure to make a note of all settings that were customized so that after the reset you can go back in and customize those settings the way you want.

  5. Check if your Android phone is the problem. If you've tried all of the router options above and you're still seeing the "Failed to Obtain IP Address" error on your Android, it's time to start looking into troubleshooting your Android device. The first thing you should try is having your Android forget the network connection, which acts as a reset. Once this is finished, you can reconnect your Android device to the Wi-Fi network. You'll need to type the network password since as far as your device knows, this will be the "first time" you're connecting to the network.

    Having your Android device forget a Wi-Fi network clears all cached network settings and data, which often clears any network issues the Android device is experiencing.

  6. Clear your Google Play Services cache. Google Play services that run in the background on your Android phone are known to occasionally cause network issues. This could be due to overuse of network bandwidth when the services automatically update all apps on your phone, but no one knows exactly whey these services sometimes cause network issues. The fixes for most Google Play Store errors are often the same fixes that'll resolve this IP configuration failure.

  7. Check if your router is blocking your device's IP address. Sometimes, a wireless router may start blocking the IP address of devices on the network for no apparent reason. If you've confirmed the router isn't explicitly set to block your device, you might be able to resolve this error by changing your Android to use a static IP on the network.

  8. Turn Airplane mode on, wait about one minute, then turn it back off. Make sure Wi-Fi is turned off and ensure your phone can connect to the Internet over cellular data. If that works, find a Wi-Fi hotspot in your area and test connecting to that network. If you're able to connect and use the internet, then you know the issue isn't your phone. It's the network.

  9. You may have no other choice than to factory reset your Android if this issue is happening on your home network. If you're temporarily trying to use someone else's network, a less drastic option would be to just use your mobile data for internet access while you're there.