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Samsung Galaxy J3 keeps showing “Warning: Camera failed” when camera is opened [Troubleshooting Guide]

The error message “Warning: Camera failed” is often referring to the sensor that failed to initialize or failed to do what’s expected of it. Some of our readers who own the Samsung Galaxy J3 seem to be experiencing this error every time they try to take pictures.

In this post, I will guide you through in troubleshooting your device that may help us get rid of the error and bring the phone back to its normal operation with its camera working without a hitch. So, if you own this phone and are currently bugged by the same problem, read on as this post may be able to help you.

Before we jump right into our tutorials, if you have other issues, drop by our Galaxy J3 troubleshooting page for we have already addressed many issues with this phone since we started supporting it. Try to find problems that are similar with yours and use the troubleshooting procedures or solutions we suggested. Should you need further assistance from us, fill up our Android issues questionnaire and hit submit. Don’t worry, it’s free.

Error message “Warning: Camera failed” shows when camera is opened

Problem: I’m not sure if this problem is with the app or with the camera hardware but apparently, I need your help in figuring out the error message “Warning: Camera failed.” It opens as soon as I open the camera app. Oh well, the camera app doesn’t open when I tap it, instead this error message shows up. I’m not sure what I need to do to fix this or get rid of the message to give way for the camera to work. Can you help? Thank you.

Troubleshooting: There are, at least, two error messages you may get when the camera freezes, crashes or stops working. The first one is “Unfortunately, Camera has stopped” while the second is “Warning: Camera failed.” The former usually occurs when the problem is with the app and latter when the problem is with the hardware. However, we’ve encountered cases wherein this error occurs simply because the sensor was able to initialize leaving the hardware to crash. Therefore, just by looking at the error message, we really can’t tell if the problem is with the app, the firmware or the hardware itself. We need to troubleshoot. That said, here’s what I suggest you do…

Step 1: Make sure third-party apps have nothing to do with the problem

There are times when third-party apps crash and affect the normal operation of the phone. So, we need to make sure it’s not that. I need you to boot your Galaxy J3 to temporarily disable all third-party apps. In so doing, you’re already isolating the problem to know if it has something to do with third-party or pre-installed apps. This is how you run your device in safe mode:

  1. Power off your Galaxy J3. Press and hold the Power key, tap Power off and then touch POWER OFF to confirm.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the screen with the device name.
  3. When ‘SAMSUNG’ appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see ‘Safe Mode’.

While the phone is in this mode, try to open the camera app to see if you’ll still be greeted with the same error. If so, then the apps you downloaded and installed have nothing to do with the problem, otherwise, you just have to find the apps that cause it and uninstall them.

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap the desired application in the default list or tap Menu icon > Show system apps to display pre-installed apps.
  5. Tap Storage.
  6. Tap Clear data and then tap OK.
  7. Tap Clear cache.

Step 2: Clear the cache and data of the Camera app

Assuming the error still shows up when the camera app is opened in safe mode or if the problem still persists after doing the first step, then it’s time to go after the app itself. You have to reset it by clearing its cache and data so it will be brought back to its default settings as well as delete all possible corrupt caches and data. If the problem is with the app only, then this procedure is enough to fix it…

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap the Camera app in the default list or tap Menu icon > Show system apps to display pre-installed apps.
  5. Tap Storage.
  6. Tap Clear data and then tap OK.
  7. Tap Clear cache.

Don’t worry, none of your pictures or videos will be deleted as they’re saved somewhere else. So, after doing this, try to open the app to see if the error still shows up and if so, then move on to the next step.

Step 3: Wipe the cache partition so caches will be replaced

We need to rule out the possibility that some of the caches got corrupted and are causing this kind of problem. Since we don’t have access to individual caches nor can we delete them individually, we have to bring the phone to boot in recovery mode and wipe the cache partition from there. This is how you do it:

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the device logo screen displays, release only the Power key.
  4. When the Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe cache partition’.
  6. Press the Power key to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘yes’ and press the Power key to select.
  8. When the wipe cache partition is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  9. Press the Power key to restart the device.

It will take a little longer for the phone to become active but when it does, try to open the camera to know if the error pops up and if so, then you have no other choice but to do the next step.

Step 4: Perform a reset on your Samsung Galaxy J3

A reset will bring the phone back to its factory default settings ruling out the possibility that the problem might have been caused by incorrect settings or configurations. Other than that, it will also delete all possible corrupt data and system files. However, all your personal files and data will also be deleted, so make sure you make a backup prior to the reset.

When you’re ready to reset your phone, disable the anti-theft feature first to make sure you won’t be locked out of your device after the reset. Here’s how…

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Cloud and accounts.
  4. Tap Accounts.
  5. Tap Google.
  6. Tap your Google ID email address. If you have multiple accounts setup, you will need to repeat these steps for each account.
  7. Tap Menu.
  8. Tap Remove account.
  9. Tap REMOVE ACCOUNT.

After disabling anti-theft, follow these steps to do the Master reset…

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the device logo screen displays, release only the Power key
  4. When the Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  6. Press Power button to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  8. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  9. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  10. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Step 5: Bring the phone to the shop or store to have it checked

After the reset and the problem still occurs, then we can say that it’s already a hardware issue since we’ve already done all the basic procedures that may have fixed the issue provided it’s a problem with one of the apps or the firmware. So, at this point, it’s better to just send the phone in or bring it to the shop and have the tech take a look at it.

Error “Camera failed” shows when picture is taken using default camera app

Problem: Hi guys. My phone is the cheap Galaxy J3 and while I don’t expect it to work like my Galaxy S5 before, it pretty much do what I want it to do but recently, an error keeps showing up whenever I take pictures. The error message says “Camera failed” but I can open the camera without any issues. It only shows when a picture is taken. Have you encountered this problem before? What should I do to get rid of this error message? Thanks.

Troubleshooting: Unlike the first problem, this one allows the user to open the camera successfully but the same error message shows up when the owner starts to snap some photos. We also cannot be sure if it’s the problem with the hardware or just an issue with the app or the firmware. But let me tell you the basic operation of the camera before we proceed.

When you take a photo, of course, you will open the camera. Once tapped, the app, the firmware and the camera sensor initialize to become ready. The Gallery app will also be called to initialize since it works side-by-side the camera. When the picture is taken, the sensor will register the image then pass it over to the Gallery, which will manage it and it might be at this point that the problem occurs. That said, here’s what you should do…

Step 1: Clear the cache and data of the Camera

Since the camera is concerned, it must be the first one that should be reset to rule out the possibility that the it’s just an issue with the app itself or some of its configurations.

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap the Camera app in the default list or tap Menu icon > Show system apps to display pre-installed apps.
  5. Tap Storage.
  6. Tap Clear data and then tap OK.
  7. Tap Clear cache.

If the error still shows up after this, the next step might help.

Step 2: Clear the cache and data of the Gallery app

It’s possible that it’s the Gallery that’s crashing and affects the operation of the camera since the error occurs after the picture is taken. So, we need to draw it out of the picture by clearing its cache and data. Don’t worry, it only manages your picture and videos so when it’s reset, none of those files will be deleted as they’re saved somewhere safe.

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap the Gallery app in the default list or tap Menu icon > Show system apps to display pre-installed apps.
  5. Tap Storage.
  6. Tap Clear data and then tap OK.
  7. Tap Clear cache.

Step 3: Wipe the cache partition

Assuming the error still shows up even after clearing the caches and data of both the Camera and Gallery, then it’s time to go after the firmware. The first thing you should do is delete all possible corrupt caches by wiping the cache partition. Follow the guide on how to boot your phone in recovery mode and wipe the cache partition in the first problem.

Step 4: Perform the Factory Reset on your Galaxy J3

After wiping the cache partition and the issue still occurs, then there’s nothing more you can do than reset  your phone. But then again, you need to backup all your files and data before doing the procedure especially your pictures and videos.

  1. Back up data on the internal memory. If you have signed into a Google account on the device, you have activated Anti-theft and will need your Google credentials to finish the Master reset.
  2. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  3. Tap Settings.
  4. Tap Cloud and accounts.
  5. Tap Backup and restore.
  6. If desired, tap Back up my data to move the slider to ON or OFF.
  7. If desired, tap Restore to move the slider to ON or OFF.
  8. Tap the back key twice to return to the Settings menu, then tap General Management.
  9. Tap Reset.
  10. Tap Factory data reset.
  11. Tap Reset device.
  12. If you have screen lock turned on, enter your PIN or password.
  13. Tap Continue.
  14. Tap Delete all.

I hope that this troubleshooting guide helps, if not, then send the phone to a shop to be fixed.

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