You’ve been using Android all of your life, possibly using the same passcode for years; however, you decided to change to make things a little more secure. Unfortunately, you didn’t memorize it enough and now you’re locked out of your smartphone. What do you do now? Most think that the only option to get past that is to factory reset the smartphone; however, there are a number of other ways that you can unlock your Android phone password without factory reset.
Follow along with us below, and we’ll show you how you can save yourself from having to erase all of that personal data. Let’s dive right in.
Android Device Manager
Android Device Manager can be pictured as the Find My iPhone of Android. It’s a great way to find a lost Android device, but one of the many neat features that it comes equipped with is the ability to unlock your phone’s password. It’s super handy for those that forgot the password or pattern on their phone!
Since your Android phone is linked to your Google account, we’ll need to log into that. You can do that on another mobile device or computer — just head to Google’s Find My Device Manager. You will need to log into that same Google account that is logged into on your phone.
After you sign in, Google begins searching for your device. On the next page, you will need to choose the Android phone that you want to unlock. Make sure you choose the one that we’re having trouble accessing.
You will see a card with the options Ring, Lock, and Erase. For our purposes, choose the Lock option.
A new prompt will appear where you’ll be asked to type in a new, temporary password. Don’t enter your Google password, and you can leave the phone number and recovery message fields completely blank.
Now, move over to the smartphone that you’re having trouble unlocking. Once you wake the screen, you should see an option to enter your temporary password. Enter it, and then your device should be unlocked and accessible again.
It is important that the first thing you do after this is change the password on your phone. You’ll want to go into your phone’s Settings app, and then head over to the Security category. You’ll want to disable the temporary password here, and replace it with a new PIN, password, or pattern that you will remember.
Android 4.4 and Below
Google stopped supporting Android 4.4 long ago, but if you’re still one of the few people that have a phone on that version, Google makes it pretty easy to get into your phone without a pattern or passcode. You’ll need to attempt your pattern or passcode a few times and fail. Google will then tell you you failed too many times, and will need to log into your account again with your Google account.
Alternatively, you can press the “Forgot Pattern” or “Forgot Passcode’ button in order to manually enter your Google credentials to bypass that passcode. Once you enter in your credentials, your phone is unlocked, and you can change your password or pattern.
Android 5.0 or Higher
Android 5.0 and higher versions have a really easy way to unlock your device, and that’s with something called Smart Lock.
You can find the Smart Lock settings in the Security section on devices running Android 5.0 Lollipop or higher. There are three options that come with Smart Lock — trusted devices, trusted face, and trusted places. With a Trusted Place setup, and GPS enabled, whenever you enter that Trusted Place — such as your home — the device is automatically unlocked.
If you forgot your password, this is a great way to get inside your phone without having to do a factory data reset.
There are a number of third-party services that will be able to unlock your smartphone without a factory reset as well. You’ll need to find a reputable one, but most of them will allow you to download their software to your PC. From there, you can plug your Android phone into your PC, and then simply press the Unlock option on your chosen piece of software. Your phone is unlocked, and you can change your passcode to something more memorable.
As you can see, there are a number of ways to unlock an Android phone password without a factory reset. Once you’re in your phone, you can reset your password to something that is a little more memorable.