One of the common errors a lot Samsung Galaxy users have reported in the past is “Unfortunately Phone has stopped.” Today’s troubleshooting article addresses this error on the #GalaxyNote5. This error is usually due to an incorrect network configuration or corrupted software so its almost always fixable at the user level. We hope that this guide will walk you through towards resolution.
Today’s problem: Galaxy Note5 “Unfortunately Phone has stopped” error shows when receiving a call
I keep getting the message “Unfortunately phone has stopped” when i receive an incoming call. The only way to clear it is to restart my phone. If the message appears, I cant answer calls or do anything else with my phone. The phone appears to be working fine until i get a phone call. Please help. — Lisa R. Wright
Solution: Hi Lisa. Fixing “Unfortunately phone has stopped” error involves a number of troubleshooting steps. Let’s discuss them one by one below.
Solution #1: Restart your Note5
Before going to more drastic Android solutions, the first thing that you should do is to restart your Note5. This simple solution refreshes the software as well as terminate possible hardware glitch that may be developing.
There are two ways to restart your Note5. The first one is done by pressing and holding the Power button, then tapping the restart option. The second one, also known as soft reset, involves pressing and holding Power and Volume Down buttons. This is usually useful in restarting a frozen or unresponsive Note5. If you haven’t tried it before, here’s how it’s done:
- Press and hold the Power and Volume down buttons for 12 seconds.
- Use the Volume down button to scroll to the Power Down option.
- Press the Home key to select. Note: The device powers down completely.
Solution #2: Change network mode manually
“Unfortunately phone has stopped” error can sometimes be caused by a misconfiguration of a device’s network settings. To force your Note5 to reacquire your carrier’s signal, you can briefly disconnect it from the network. Here’s how:
- Open Settings app.
- Tap Connections.
- Tap Mobile networks.
- Tap Network operators.
- Tap Search networks.
- Wait for your Note5 to search the airwaves for available network signals.
- Once it’s done searching for networks, select another one and not your own network.
- Your Note5 should say that it’s unable to register or somewhere along that line. That’s normal.
- Afterwards, connect to your network again.
- Check if “Unfortunately phone has stopped” error is still there by calling your number.
If the issue remains, proceed to the next troubleshooting steps.
Solution #3: Delete Phone app cache
So far, the most effective solution for “Unfortunately Phone has stopped” error that we know is by dealing with the Phone in question directly. This is done by wiping the Phone app’s data. Here’s how to do it:
- From the Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
- Find and tap Settings.
- Under the ‘APPLICATIONS’ section, find and touch Application manager.
- Swipe to the left or to the right to display the appropriate screen but to display all apps, choose the ‘ALL’ screen.
- Find the Phone app and tap it.
- Touch Clear data and then OK to delete downloaded data, login information, settings, etc.
Solution #4: Reseat SIM card
Your Note5 calling function is associated to your SIM card function in some ways so there’s a chance that a bug in any of them may be causing the “Unfortunately phone has stopped” error to keep popping up. To minimize encountering network bugs, you can try to remove the SIM card and restart the phone before re-inserting it. Some users were able to successfully fix network issues by doing this simple workaround before so make sure not to skip it.
Before you remove the SIM card, be sure to turn your Note5 off to prevent causing problems.
Solution #5: Clear cache partition
Another good maintenance step that you can do in this situation is clearing of your Note5’s cache partition. This partition stores the system cache which is an important cache used by Android to load apps quickly. Sometimes, the system cache gets corrupted after an update or after installing an app. To ensure that your phone’s system cache is well, you should regularly clear it. If you haven’t tried doing it before, follow the steps below:
- Turn off the device.
- Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
- 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).
- Press the Volume down key to highlight wipe cache partition.
- Press the Power key to select.
- Press the Volume down key to highlight “yes” and press the Power key to select.
- When the wipe cache partition is complete, “Reboot system now” is highlighted.
- Press the Power key to restart the device.
Solution #6: Reset network settings
Clearing your Note5’s network settings is another good troubleshooting step to do here. The steps below will reset wifi, mobile data, and bluetooth settings. This means that you’ll have to enter wifi passwords, re-pair Bluetooth devices, or re-enter VPN credentials again afterwards.
- Open Settings app.
- Tap General management.
- Tap Reset.
- Tap Reset Network Settings.
- Tap RESET SETTINGS button.
Solution #7: Replace SIM card
Aside from reseating the SIM card, you can also try to see what happens when you replace the current SIM card with a new one. Although the physical SIM itself seldom goes bad, replacing the current one will make changes to your account on your carrier’s side. The process may change some configuration that may be key in fixing the error.
Most carriers will replace their SIM card for free so just visit the nearest store of your carrier to get one.
Solution #8: Boot to Safe Mode and observe
Just as the operating system can become problematic, some apps can also be a cause of problems. Keep in mind that some apps may not be built by experienced developers, leaving them wanting of important compatibility upgrades. Others may also be designed to cause mayhem in a system, just like malware does. If you don’t rigorously screen the apps you install, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll encounter problems with one of them. To see if the
“Unfortunately phone has stopped” error is due to another app, boot your Note5 to safe mode. In safe mode, all third party apps will be blocked from running. If the “Unfortunately phone has stopped” error won’t popup when your Note5’s in safe mode, that’s a confirmation of our hunch.
To restart your Note5 to safe mode, here are the steps:
- Turn off the phone completely.
- Press and hold the Power key.
- Once ‘Samsung Galaxy Note5’ shows, release the Power key and immediately press and hold the Volume Down button.
- The phone will restart but keep the Vol Down button pressed.
- Once the phone has finished restarting, ‘Safe mode’ will be display in the lower-left corner of the screen.
- You may now release the Volume Down button.
Solution #9: Factory reset
The most drastic solution that you can do in this situation is to wipe the phone by performing a factory reset. As the name suggests, this procedure will return all software settings to their defaults. Third party apps will be deleted as well so your phone is reverted to basically its factory version. To see if factory reset fixes the issue or not, be sure to check for the problem right after doing the reset, when there are yet no third party apps installed. If the issue remains, you must contact Samsung for repair or replacement.
To factory reset your Note5, follow these steps:
- Turn off your Samsung Galaxy Note 5 completely.
- Press and hold the Volume Up and the Home buttons first, and then press and hold the Power key.
- Keep the three buttons pressed and when ‘Samsung Galaxy Note5’ shows, release the Power key but continue holding the other two.
- Once the Android logo shows, release both the Volume Up and Home buttons.
- The notice ‘Installing system update’ will show on the screen for 30 to 60 seconds before the Android system recovery screen is shown with its options.
- Use the Volume Down key to highlight the option ‘Yes — delete all user data’ and press the Power key to select it.
- When the process is complete, use the Volume Down key to highlight the option ‘Reboot system now’ and hit the Power key to restart the phone.
- The reboot may take a little longer to complete but don’t worry and wait for the device to become active.