Google Nexus 5 Common Problems and Solutions [Part 1]

Google Nexus 5 is probably the Android phone that’s getting a lot of support these days but this post will cater to the needs of owners who are not so savvy when it comes to the ins and outs of their phone. This is just the first part of the series so you can expect to read a lot of posts about Nexus 5 problems in the following days.

If you own this phone and are experiencing some issues with it, try to browse the post and see if your problem has already been addressed. If not then we contact us about it. You can like our Facebook Page to get updates via your favorite social network, follow us on our Google Plus Community, subscribe to our newsletter or email us at [email protected].

GN5 has troubles connecting to Wi-Fi

Problem: Hi, my Google Nexus 5 just can’t connect to Wi-Fi and when it does, I still can’t browse the web. Here’s what actually happens, when I connect to Wi-Fi, my own network at home, my phone keeps telling me ‘Obtaining IP address’ then it would say ‘Remembered’ after that it would say ‘Disconnected’ and then back to ‘Obtaining IP address’ again and the cycle is repeated over and over. Eventually, after minutes of trying and re-trying the process, the phone would say ‘Connected’ and Wi-Fi icon appears on my notification bar. The problem is, I still can’t browse the web after that. Then, several minutes passed, the phone would say ‘Disconnected’ again. Help me please… What should I do?

Answer: First and foremost, I want you to turn your phone off and boot to recovery. From there, wipe the cache partition and boot normally just to give your phone a fresh start. Open Wi-Fi settings and ‘Forget’ the network your connecting to and turn Wi-Fi off. Turn Wi-Fi back on and let it scan for available networks again. Connect to your network and observe to see if the same problem happens. If it does, you should set your focus on your network devices such as your router or modem.

Unplug your modem or router from the power source for about a minute. On your phone, turn off your Wi-Fi. Plug the router back in and wait at least 2 minutes, and then on your phone turn Wi-Fi back on. Once detected, connect to your network to see if the problem still persists. If it does, let your laptop connect to your Wi-Fi network just to test if it can easily connect to it and browse the web after that. If the laptop can connect just fine, the phone has a problem. However, to verify that even further, try connecting to other networks with your phone to see if you can.

If you can’t resolve this problem, you can bring the phone to the store where you bought it and have it checked thoroughly or you may contact Play Store Support.

Poor cell reception on my Nexus 5

Problem: I don’t know if this a common issue or if there is a fix coming in few weeks or so but by Nexus 5 just getting poor signal reception here in Orange County, CA. It used to have good cell reception initially but it seems the signal is fading. I still can receive messages though, but there are times when they arrive late. It’s very annoying not to mention I can’t rely on real-time messaging. Can you guys have some suggestions?

Answer: Many would say that Google Nexus 5 have problems with its radios but even more would say the phone performs well. Signal reception actually varies from place to place and that’s one factor we can’t control or do something about. You said, however, that initially your phone was getting good signal so it could be that it’s just a minor software problem. Try to check for available update for your phone, download and install it if there is.

At this point, I would assume you’re using a stock firmware because if you don’t, then we are not at the same page here. There are always possibilities that custom ROMs have issues. I’m not trying to discredit third-party developers as I have a lot of friends over at XDA Developers. Now, if haven’t flashed any custom firmware on your device, try wiping the cache partition and perform a factory reset. These are the things you could do before having your phone checked by a technician or replaced by your provider.

Dead pixel on the screen

Problem: It’s a bummer but I believe my new Google Nexus 5 has some dead pixels on the screen. I don’t know what to do guys so I need your help. What should I do? Can this be fixed by cellphone repair men? Or, is that even the best thing to do now?

Answer: It’s a brand new phone and if it were mine, I would wage war if my provider won’t replace it. What I mean is that you should be getting what you paid for. If the phone is carried by any service provider, they would gladly replace it with a new unit. If you bought it without contract, you should contact Google and they will replace it without questions asked. Here is the link to Play Store Support.

No SIM card error on Nexus 5

Problem: So I decided to leave my provider and I have a new Koodo SIM card, which I placed on my after I removed my original SIM card. Now I’m getting “No SIM Card – Emergency calls only” error message on my phone and even if I inserted my original SIM card, it won’t read it anymore. Do you guys have some ideas how to fix this problem? Help me please…

Answer: You know manufacturers would advise you to do a Factory Reset during a SIM switch but it’s not really necessary for some phones, but at least, you need to turn your phone off when you switch your SIM cards. So, turn your phone off and insert your new Koodo SIM card. Make sure you inserted the SIM correctly. Then, boot your Nexus 5 normally. GSM Nexus 5s actually don’t have problems with SIM switch as long as you turn it off during the actual switch. Now, with your Koodo SIM card inserted, you would need to set your new APN settings for your phone to work. You may need this information: How do I setup data on my non-Koodo phone?

Nexus 5 has a flashing blue notification LED

Problem: I’m at a loss here guys so I need your help. My Nexus 5 has a blue flashing LED. Tried checking the notification area but there was nothing there. I have Light Flow Lite installed on my phone so I checked everything there but can’t find anything that may have caused it. I had to reboot my phone to turn the light off. But it keeps happening to me. Help me please.

Answer: Let’s narrow down the problem. Uninstall Light Flow Lite first. Many Nexus 5 owners were experiencing this problem due to the app, or at least, with this app installed on their phone. Once Light Flow Lite is uninstalled, go to Settings > Display > turn off Pulse Notification. Reboot your phone. Turn the Pulse Notification back on. This should solve your problem, otherwise, seek help from your provider or Google.

Can’t find downloaded ringtones

Problem: So, I have ringtones saved in my Google Drive account, which I have downloaded to ringtones folder on my Google Nexus 5. The problem is that when I set the ringtone and locate the ones I downloaded, they can’t be found. I don’t know what I have done wrong but I know saving ringtones into ringtones folder will make those files visible when I set my ring tones. Guys, I know you must have some ways around this problem. Help me please.

Answer: I am not really sure if it’s a bug or if it really works that way but I personally encountered this problem before. To solve this problem, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Launch your Google Drive client.
  2. Under Settings, find Enable Encryption.
  3. Once found, un-check the box beside Enable Encryption. Doing this will actually make Google Drive files readable by apps and services that will use them.

The first procedure will actually solve the problem for you, but I will give you another workaround just in case the first one fails.

  1. Download your custom ringtones to your computer.
  2. Connect your Google Nexus 5 to your computer.
  3. Copy custom ringtones to the ringtones folder in your phone.

That should do it. This procedure will strip the encryption off the files allowing the phone to detect them to be used in system services.

App launcher crashes

Problem: Okay, I have a very simple problem which can be solved by simply clearing the cache and data as this is sort of ‘factory reset’ to apps. Before Android 4.4 KitKat update, I can just go to Settings and choose Android Launcher from the list and from there I can clear its cache and data. Now with Experience Launcher installed, I can’t just do it anymore because the options are disabled.

Answer: You can actually still do that, however, in a kind of different way because Google Experience Launcher is now part of the Google Search app. So, instead of trying to clear the cache and data of Experience Launcher, which you can’t by the way, try clearing the cache and data of Google Search.

In case the problem still persists after doing so, there’s no other option left for you to do but perform a factory reset to bring the phone back to its original settings. If you want to work around this issue without doing a factory reset, use third-party launchers.

Widgets are not updating, MMS messages delayed

Problem: There are widgets that are updated constantly and there are those that aren’t. I’m not talking about updates that bump the apps to the next version but data updates like RSS feeds, etc. That said, the widgets on my phone, a Google Nexus 5, are not updated the way they should be or like they used to. I have tried checking my phone for possible version updates but all of them have the current version. Also, there are times when my MMS messages are two to three hours delayed. It’s a bugger, really, but the problem is I don’t know how to fix these problems.

Answer: Based on your words, it seems to me like this is a network problem and I’m not talking about Wi-Fi network but mobile network. Widgets that pull data from their respective servers need stable and active internet connection by the time they pull updates down to your phone. If mobile network connection is not available, the widgets will never stop trying to reach their servers until the internet connection becomes available. Widgets like this can pull updates via the mobile network or Wi-Fi network. However, MMS messages only need mobile network. And since you’re experiencing these different yet related problems, I’m sure it’s your mobile network that has some issues.

Try to monitor your phone’s RAM usage and minimize it as much as possible. Some services are automatically turned off by the system when the user launch apps and there is not enough memory left–in short, some services have to give in. Unfortunately, services that handle mobile network and connectivity are the ones that would be forced close because the phone could still function without them running. At least, that’s the logic or a rough explanation as to why mobile network may be interrupted even if radios are on.

Nexus 5 becomes hot after few minutes of use

Problem: I understand high-end smartphones will emit heat when used but my GNex 5 just heats up faster. After a few minutes of gaming, the phone heats up abnormally. I mean, I have used Nexus 4 and have been playing the same games but it never heated up like the one I have now. I also used Galaxy S4 and it heated up faster than Nexus 4 but not as fast as my GN5. In short, my device becomes hot even if used at an average level for quite short period of time. Can you advise me what to do to minimize the heating problem? What do I need to do?

Answer: Most of the time overheating problem with smartphones is accompanied by faster battery drain. But I hope this is not the case on your Nexus 5. This issue may be very simple or complicated depending on what caused it in the first place. If it were the battery that’s causing the overheating, I would recommend you call your service provider or Google and have it replaced immediately. The problem is, it is almost impossible for us to determine if it were the battery that’s causing it, isn’t it?

If this was my phone, here’s what I’m going to do to solve, or at least, determine the problem:

  1. Close all apps running in the background.
  2. Set screen brightness to full.
  3. Launch as many ‘light’ apps as possible and observe if the phone heats up fast. Light apps do not actually push the phone to its edge so we can’t expect the device to heat up that much but if it does, it’s a hardware problem than anything else.
  4. If the phone doesn’t heat up with light apps, launch as many heavy apps as possible. These are the apps that require constant internet connection to pull data from online servers. They also include games that do not demand high GPU performance. The phone may heat up a little with these apps running. It’s up to you to determine the “hotness” that is normal and not. If the Nexus 5 heats normally with heavy apps, then there’s no problem.
  5. Now, run demanding apps. These are the games that need high graphics performance to work properly. It is expected the phone will heat up intensely after hours of use but if the device heats up in a few minutes abnormally, the overheating problem may be caused by the CPU. By the way, Nexus 5’s GPU, Adreno 330, is integrated into its CPU so if the overheating problem happens when apps requiring high graphics usage are at play, it could be the GPU that has issues.

I can’t stress enough the danger of the phone that usually overheats so have your device replaced by your service provider or Google as soon as possible. Also, don’t use the phone while it is being charged.

Nexus 5 camera crashes

Problem: “Unfortunately, Camera has stopped.” This is the exact error message I get whenever I launch the camera on my Nexus 5. I am very disappointed because everything was working fine the day before then all of the sudden without apparent reason at all this problem happens. I tried searching the web for possible solutions but I can’t find any. I would be so grateful if you guys can provide me solution to this problem. Thanks.

Answer: It is apparently a camera problem, either the hardware side of it or the software is causing the problem. When this kind of problem occurs, we are almost tempted to think it’s either the camera sensor or the camera app that’s causing the issue but most of the time it’s not.

The first thing you should try is find third-party apps that are, in anyway, use camera services. Examples of these apps are Light Flow, which uses the LED; Google Goggles, which uses the camera sensor to scan pictures and connect to its servers to retrieve information about what’s on the picture; bar code readers, which use the camera sensor to scan bar codes and retrieve specific information about the item. If you have any of these apps, uninstall them and observe if the phone still stumbles upon the same error message.

Additionally, you may want to clear cache and data of Camera from the application manager and if all else fails, factory reset is your last resort.

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  1. Hi all, i am using GN5 from past 1 week now … and facing issues with the network… the network goes off and dosen comes back even after turning the flight mode on and off… have to reboot/restart the phone everytime …. I never use to face such problems with my previous phone….Pls HELP

  2. I Have a GN5 and from past 3 days i am getting very very weak signal.. Previously I was getting good signal quality but now it has diminished please help!!!!!!

  3. The camera of Nexus 5 is inferior to Note 3. While Note 3 doesn’t have any problems with focusing, Nexus seems to have a hard time fixing a bug when you try to steady it for a
    Will go for Note series every time.

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