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Problems with your OnePlus 3 or 3T? Here’s how to fix them

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Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

So you’ve got a OnePlus 3 or 3T, but after setting it up and using it for a bit, you’ve run into a frustrating issue. This isn’t uncommon for a new smartphone, but it’s still annoying all the same, especially with a device as well made and inexpensive as OnePlus’ latest. We did some looking around to see what problems other OnePlus 3 or 3T owners were running into, and we’ve compiled a list of the most common ones, as well as what to do to address them. Hopefully, whatever troubles are ailing your OnePlus 3 or 3T can be solved with these fixes.

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Problem: Device randomly restarts

There have been people on the OnePlus forums, Reddit, and the XDA Developers forums who have reported seeing their devices restart for unknown reasons. In most cases, this occurs while browsing the internet.

Official solution:

  • OxygenOS 3.2.4 included a fix for this specific issue, but if the problem persists, or comes back afterwards, your best bet is to update to OxygenOS version 4.0.2, which further improves system stability, or to the latest version of OxygenOS, which is version 4.0.3 for the OnePlus 3 and 3T.

Potential solutions:

  • Let the phone sit until its battery is completely drained and won’t turn on. Leave it for up to 10 minutes, then plug it into its charger until the battery is fully charged.
  • You can try a factory reset and start over from scratch. Do this by going to Settings > Backup & Reset > Factory data reset > Reset phone > Erase everything.
  • Your final option is to reach out to OnePlus Support to get your phone repaired or replaced.

Issue: Unable to update

Users on the OnePlus forums have been unable to update their devices using the usual method of downloading the update over Wi-Fi. Attempts to get the new software over Wi-Fi seem to result in failure, or the phone boots into recovery mode.

Potential solutions:

  • This may sound silly, but turn your device completely off, then turn it back on and retry the update.
  • You can install OxygenOS updates manually by downloading it to your Mac/PC and connecting your device to your computer using a USB cable. OnePlus has clear, step-by-step instructions on how to update your device using this method, which you can find on the OnePlus downloads page.

Problem: Device overheating or becomes hot while charging

Quite a few people on the OnePlus forums have complained about that their phones are running hotter than usual, either during everyday use, while in their pocket, or while charging. It was one of the more common issues with the OnePlus 3, and the issue has persisted with the release of the OnePlus 3T.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart your phone and continue using it normally to see if it gets hot again.
  • An app constantly running in the background may be causing the problem. Be sure to close any apps that aren’t needed, or ones you’re not currently using.
  • If the problem started after installing new apps, the new apps may be the cause of the issue. Delete them one by one to see if your phone’s temperature changes during regular use.
  • If your device gets hot while charging, the easiest thing to do is to stop using it while it charges.
  • The OnePlus 3 has a feature known as Dash Charge, which is meant to charge your device quickly but keep the phone cool. However, the feature only works with the Dash Charger Adapter, which costs $20 on the OnePlus website. If you think the charger your device came with is the culprit, consider replacing it, or get the Dash Charge Adapter.
  • The fingerprint sensor has also been said to be the culprit, especially when your smartphone is placed within a pocket. The sensor continues to search for a fingerprint while in the pocket, assuming the screen is facing your leg. A quick solution is to turn the phone around before popping it in your pocket. You could also invest in a flip case, which also has been said to eliminate the problem.
  • If none of the aforementioned solutions are an option, you can always disable the fingerprint scanner until a fix is implemented. Hopefully, you don’t rely on it too much.

Annoyance: Device doesn’t auto-rotate

When changing the phone’s orientation from portrait (vertical) to landscape (horizontal), the display does not rotate as it should, even when the feature that allows the display to automatically change is enabled. This  problem has been talked about on the OnePlus and XDA Developers forums.

Potential solutions:

  • Some have seen the auto-rotate feature work just fine after a quick restart. Turn your phone off and on again to see if the problem fixes itself.
  • If the problem started after installing a certain app, or a series of apps, consider uninstalling them one at a time to see if that was the cause of the issue.
  • There are apps on the Google Play Store like GPS Status & Toolbox that will allow you to see if all of a devices sensors are working, and re-calibrate them if necessary. Similarly, there are apps like Rotation Control that let users control and adjust the screen orientation, as well as prevent other apps from changing it.
  • If the problem continues, reach out to OnePlus Support to get a replacement smartphone.

Issue: Can’t connect to Wi-Fi

All smartphones run into this particular issue at some point or another. Either your connection is terrible, or a connection can’t be made at all. Fortunately, the solutions remain the same and will help those on the OnePlus forums that are suffering from this particular issue.

Potential solutions:

  • The easiest thing to try is turning your phone off and on again and seeing if the connection works or improves. You should also try restarting your router, if restarting your phone didn’t change anything.
  • Go to your Wi-Fi settings and remove or forget the network you’re currently connected to, or trying to connect to. Then, enter the required details again to retry the connection.
  • OnePlus Support has two additional suggestions, following the release of OxygenOS 4.0.3:
    • If you experience frequent Wi-Fi disconnections, please go to Settings > Wi-Fi > Configure Wi-Fi. Scroll to bottom of the page and check the IP address format (IPv4 = Single line, IPv6 = Multiple lines). If the IP address is IPv6 based, then turn off the IPv6 Support toggle and see if the disconnections stop.
    • If you experience frequent Wi-Fi disconnections while switching between Wi-Fi and data, please try turning off the Smart Wi-Fi Switcher in Settings > Wi-Fi > Configure Wi-Fi and see if the disconnections stop.
  • If your device is constantly trying and failing to find a network connection, go to Settings > Mobile Networks > Network Operators and manually choose a network. This may also reduce your phone’s battery consumption.
  • Head into your settings and disable Power Saving Mode, which affects your Wi-Fi performance.
  • Go to Settings > About Phone and locate the device’s MAC address and make sure your router allows it.
  • You can also try performing a factory reset if nothing else has worked for you — some have managed to alleviate their Wi-Fi issues after doing this. Back up your data first, then go to Settings > Backup & Reset > Factory data reset > Reset phone > Erase everything.

Problem: Camera app doesn’t work or basic functions are unresponsive

The camera app that comes pre-installed on the OnePlus 3 doesn’t always work as it should. It doesn’t seem to properly take photos — or doesn’t take them at all — and the shutter button is unresponsive. Even using the volume down button to take a photo fails to work. The OnePlus 3T has also had problems with the camera app, including one where changed settings are not saved.

Official solution:

  • Previous updates to OxygenOS, such as update 3.2.1 for OnePlus 3, and update 3.5.3 for the OnePlus 3T added improvements to various aspects of the camera app. The most recent update for both smartphones, 4.0.3, contains even more improvements. Specifically, “increased stability of the Camera app,” and “optimized exposure when taking night time photos.” Consider updating to version 4.0.3 if your camera isn’t performing to the best of its ability.

Workaround:

  • There are tons of alternative camera apps you can download and use on your OnePlus 3/3T, such as Open Camera and Camera MX.

Potential solutions:

  • Wiping the cache partition has worked for some users. You can do this by turning the phone completely off, then turn it back on while pressing and holding the volume down button until the phone vibrates. Your phone will start in Simple Recovery mode, and you’ll need to use the volume buttons to navigate to the Wipe Cache Partition option and the power button to select it. Once the process is done, you’ll be told the cache wipe is complete.
  • Perform a factory reset, then test the camera again.
  • Reach out to OnePlus support, as it may be a hardware issue you’re ill-equipped to deal with.

Problem: Screen timeout doesn’t turn off display

Screen timeout is a feature of the OnePlus 3 that will dim the display of the device after a predetermined amount of time, or turn it off entirely. Some owners’ devices are not dimming as they should, which could lead to battery drain.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart your device.
  • Go to Settings > Display > Screen timeout and change how much time should pass before the screen is turned off.
  • Clear the cache after updating – Turning the phone off, then turn it back on while pressing and holding the volume down button until the phone vibrates. Your phone will start in Simple Recovery mode, and you’ll need to use the volume buttons to navigate to the Wipe Cache Partition option and the power button to select it. Once the process is done, you’ll be told the cache wipe is complete.
  • Try a factory reset.

Problem: Dash Charging doesn’t work

When using the supplied charging cable and wall charger to charge the OnePlus 3/3T, the device fails to charge the device quickly. It will, however, still charge the phone, but at a normal pace. These two threads on the OnePlus forums support the existence of the problem, with users discussing the unfortunate situation and offering simple, straightforward advice.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart the phone.
  • Try different wall outlets. Possibly ones in a totally different room.
  • Clean out the charge port on the phone and check the charge cable and wall charger for imperfections.
  • If possible, use another charging cable to see if charging works as intended.
  • Attempt a quick restart of the device.

Problem: Display doesn’t turn off when making phone calls

The OnePlus 3T’s display is supposed to turn off when users make phone calls. For some owners, however, the display remains on. This leads to the display using more battery life and makes it easy to accidentally tap the screen during the call.

Potential solutions:

  • Cancel the call, restart your device, and retry the call again.
  • Test your proximity sensor by dialing “*#808#” and using the various options provided to test it.
  • Go to Settings and find the Apps section. Tap Phone > Storage > Clear Data. Try making a call again.

Issue: No longer receiving voicemail notifications

After missing a call, if the caller leaves a voicemail, the receiver is supposed to be notified by their OnePlus 3/3T that a voicemail was left and is available to listen to. However, users on the OnePlus forums, and a few on the XDA Developers forums have ceased to get these notifications.

Temporary solutions:

  • Restarting the device will result in the notifications being shown.

Potential solutions:

  • Disabling Visual Voicemail is the current method people have been using to deal with their sudden lack of voicemail notifications. To do so, open your call settings, then select the SIM card you’re currently using. Select your Voicemail settings and disable Visual Voicemail. The one downside to this, of course, is that you’ll no longer have the Visual Voicemail feature. Fortunately, T-Mobile has its own Visual Voicemail app on the Google Play Store.

Problem: Poor battery life after OxygenOS 4.0.3 update

Many people have noticed a drop in their OnePlus 3/3T’s battery life after updating it to version 4.0.3. Prior to the update, their phones would last a relatively long time during normal, everyday use. If you need additional examples, look no further than the OnePlus forums, which are full of people reporting poor or reduced battery life.

Potential solutions:

  • Forums user JoshuvaAntony has provided a list of steps to deal with terrible battery life or quick battery drain, and several other members have said that the steps have alleviated the issue:
    • Go to Settings > About Phone and tap Build Number several times until you get a message saying “You are now a developer.”
    • Go back to Settings and there should be a new option called Developer Options. Tap Developer Options and enable it, then enable Doze Mode and Advanced Reboot. Don’t enable anything else.
    • Go to Settings > Battery and tap the ellipses in the upper-right corner. Then, disable Aggressive Doze and App Hibernation.
    • Go to Settings > Storage and Memory > Storage > Cached Data > OK.
    • Go to Settings > Apps > Google Play Services > Storage > Manage Space > Clear Data. After doing so, make sure to not press Back or the Home key.
    • Press and hold the Power key, then tap Reboot. You should now have three options to choose from — Reboot, Recovery, and Bootloader. Tap Recovery and your phone will boot into Recovery Mode.
    • While in Recovery Mode, tap English > Wipe Data & Cache > Wipe Cache > OK. Afterward, tap Reboot and your phone will boot up normally. When it gets to the lock screen, don’t do anything. Give your phone a couple of minutes to idle, then it should be okay to use. At this point, you can choose to go back to the Developer Options and disable Advanced Reboot.
  • You can also try reverting your phone to its factory settings if the aforementioned steps don’t work, or if you feel that performing a factory reset will be easier to do.

Annoyance: Apps being closed prematurely

A number of people in this thread are finding that their apps are closing prematurely. Specifically, while they’re still using them. Reports started with the problem only affecting exercise apps such as Runkeeper and Endomondo, but a few have said it affects games as well.

Potential solutions:

  • Update the affected app(s) if an update is available.
  • Uninstall the affected app and reinstall it, then try running the app again.
  • Go to Settings > Battery and tap the ellipses in the upper-right corner. Then, disable Aggressive Doze and App Hibernation. Some have found success with their apps after doing this.
  • Open the affected app, then trigger the app switcher and lock the app by tapping the lock icon beside it.
  • Go to Settings > Apps > Gear icon, then enable App Auto Launch. If you’re using Runkeeper, enable the app’s auto launch feature as well.