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How to fix your Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) that’s popping up “Unfortunately, Messages has stopped” error [Troubleshooting Guide]

Some of our readers who own the Samsung Galaxy A3 complained about the error message “Unfortunately, Messages has stopped,” which according to them, shows up whenever there are text messages that come in. Others also said that the error may also occur when the texting app is opened, which is a sign that the problem might be limited to the app itself. However, based on our experience, the error might also be a sign of a firmware problem that needs to be addressed immediately.

In this post, I will walk you through in troubleshooting your Galaxy A3 that keeps popping up the error “Messages has stopped.” We will try to consider every possibility and rule out each of them until we can figure out what the problem really is all about and try to formulate a solution that might just fix it for good. So, if you are one of the owners of this phone and are currently bugged by a similar problem, continue reading below as this post may be able to help you.

Now, before we jump to our troubleshooting guide, if even you found this post because you were trying to find a solution to different issue, then I suggest you visit our Galaxy A3 troubleshooting page for we have already addressed some of the most commonly reported issues with this device. Try to find a problem that’s similar with yours and use the solutions or workarounds we suggested. If they don’t work for you and if you need further assistance, then fill up our Android issues questionnaire and we will include your concern in our next posts.

How to troubleshoot your Galaxy A3 with “Messages has stopped” error

Problem: Can you help me with my phone because I can no longer text with my phone. Every time I open the app for texting an error would show up instead telling me that the “Messages has stopped.” This is the first time I encountered this problem so I really don’t know why it’s happening let alone know how to fix it. My phone is a Galaxy A3, which I bought in February. It has always been working great without any issues until recently. Can you help me with my problem please? Thanks.

Troubleshooting: More often than not, app-related error messages are problems that are limited to the apps that are specifically mentioned in the notifications but we’ve encountered cases wherein they are just signs of some firmware issues that require immediate attention.

For us, we never take for granted all problems as we always want to help out our readers make the most out of their devices. So, for this problem, here’s what we suggest you do:

Step 1: Reset the app by clearing its cache and data

As I said earlier, this kind of error is often limited to the app that’s crashing so it’s imperative we go after the app first. Since it’s a built-in application, we cannot just remove it. The best thing we can do about it is to reset it and that means we have to clear its cache and data. Doing so will bring the app back to its default settings or a configuration that works and it might be the only thing we need to do to fix this problem, so it’s worth a shot. Follow the steps below to reset the messaging app:

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap Messages.
  5. Tap Storage.
  6. Tap Clear cache.
  7. Tap Clear data and then tap OK.

After doing this procedure, open the app and try sending a text message to your own number just to verify if the error got fixed or not. If the error message still shows up, then it’s time to move on to the next step.

Step 2: Find out if some third-party apps have something to do with it

There are times when third-party apps cause built-in apps to crash. In this case though, the problem is often a minor one as it concerns only the third-party app that causes the issue. All you have to do is to know which app it is and you’re already halfway to fixing the problem. So, in this step, I will show you how to isolate the problem by running your phone up in Safe mode. In this environment, all third-party elements are temporarily disabled, so if one of them is causing the problem, the error shouldn’t pop up when in safe mode. This is how you boot your phone up in safe mode:

  1. Turn the device off.
  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’.

When in this mode, try to open the app and send a message to your own number. If the problem gets fixed, then there are other things you can do to find out which app is causing the problem. The first thing you have to do is update the apps that need to be updated:

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Play Store.
  3. Tap the Menu key and then tap My Apps. To keep your apps automatically updated, tap the Menu key, tap Settings, and then tap Auto-update apps to select the check box.
  4. Choose one of the following options:
    • Tap Update [xx] to update all applications with updates available.
    • Tap an individual application and then tap Update to update a single application.

If you are suspecting an app or two, then you should reset those apps one by one until you can pinpoint the culprit. If the clearing of the app cache and data didn’t work, you may need to uninstall those apps. Here’s how you do those things…

How to clear app cache and data on Galaxy A3

  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.

How to uninstall applications from your Galaxy A3

  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 Uninstall.
  6. Tap Uninstall again to confirm.

If the error still shows up even in safe mode or if the problem continues after doing all these procedures, then move on to the next step.

Step 3: Try deleting all system caches as some might have been corrupted

If there are system caches that are corrupt, the phone’s performance will be greatly affected and one of the signs is the crashing of some apps. This might be one of those cases so after doing the first two steps and the problem still persists, it’s time you went after the system caches. Just delete all of them and they will be replaced with new ones that are perfectly compatible with the firmware.

Don’t worry, none of your files and data will be deleted. You just have to reboot your phone up in Recovery mode and wipe cache partition:

  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.

The phone will take a bit more time rebooting as it rebuilds the caches so wait for it to become active and then open the Messages app. If the error still shows up, then move on to the next step.

Step 4: Backup all your files and data and then reset your phone

This is going to be your last resort and based on experience, a reset can always fix an error like this but there’s no guarantee. Before you actually do this though, you need to make a backup of your important files and data as they will be deleted during the process. After the backup, disable the Factory Reset Protection so that you won’t be locked out of your device.

How to disable the Factory Reset Protection on your Galaxy A3

  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.

How to do the Master Reset from your Galaxy A3

  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.

You can also reset your phone from the Settings menu…

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Cloud and accounts.
  4. Tap Backup and restore.
  5. If desired, tap Back up my data to move the slider to ON or OFF.
  6. If desired, tap Restore to move the slider to ON or OFF.
  7. Tap the back key twice to return to the Settings menu, then tap General Management.
  8. Tap Reset.
  9. Tap Factory data reset.
  10. Tap Reset device.
  11. If you have screen lock turned on, enter your PIN or password.
  12. Tap Continue.
  13. Tap Delete all.

I hope this troubleshooting guide helps.

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