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Common ZTE Axon 7 problems and how to fix them

zte axon  problems review
Kyle Wiggers/Digital Trends

So, you’re the proud owner of the ZTE Axon 7, one of the few phones out there that doesn’t come from a well-known company such as Apple or Samsung but can still go toe-to-toe with the latest iPhone or Galaxy. It’s a great, budget-based product that offers everything you could hope for in a modern smartphone, including lengthy battery life for the heavy users out there.

More: 10 great ZTE Axon 7 cases to add protection and comfort

Sadly, however, it’s not perfect. There are a few ZTE Axon 7 problems here and there that can pop up and ruin a good time. Thankfully, they’re not major problems, and most have pretty simple and straightforward solutions. We’ve rounded up a list of the most common issues people have, and we’ve got some potential solutions for you to try.

Problem: Phone freezes or crashes occasionally

Smartphones have been known to freeze or crash, oftentimes without warning, and the Axon 7 is no different. If your phone has been doing either of these things, there are a couple of things you can try to fix it and get it running like normal.

Potential solutions:

  • Look for an update: Go to Settings > All Settings > Updates to make sure you’re running the latest version of Android for your device.
  • If the freezing or crashing happens while using certain apps, look for updates for those apps, or consider uninstalling them and reinstalling them again. To update or uninstall apps, open the Google Play Store, then tap the three horizontal lines icon > My apps. You’ll see a list of your installed apps. To uninstall one, tap it to see its details, then tap Uninstall > OK.
  • Consider performing a factory reset, but back up your data first. Go to Settings > All Settings > Backup & Reset, then choose Back up my data to choose what information is backed up, and Backup Account to choose which Google account the backup is saved to. Choose Factory data reset to reset the phone to default settings.

Issue: Not receiving email

There are some scenarios in which you can send emails just fine, but are unable to receive any emails. While this may initially seem like a larger problem, there are some very simple things to check to address this issue and get back to receiving emails as intended.

Potential solutions:

  • Open the Email app, then tap the three horizontal lines icon > the gear icon > Settings > the account that’s not receiving email. The changes you can make on this screen depends on the type of account added. Typically, the cause of email issues lies with the incoming mail server and incoming port. Make sure that the correct information has been entered.
  • You can also try removing the account and re-adding it. Remove it by going to Settings > All Settings > Accounts. Then tap the account category, followed by choosing the account you wish to remove. Touch the three vertical dots icon > Remove account > Remove account. Re-add it by opening the Email app and tapping the three horizontal lines icon > the gear icon > Settings > Add an account.

Problem: Phone gets hot while charging

Some people have found that the ZTE Axon 7 can occasionally get hot during the charging process. It doesn’t simply become warm to the touch, as it would during normal use, but hotter than expected, and to a concerning degree. Fortunately, there are ways to check the phone to determine the cause.

Potential solutions:

  • Check the charge port on the Axon 7 to make sure it has not been damaged. Also, remove any debris or dust that may reside within the port.
  • Using the phone while charging, could cause the phone to become hot. Playing videos, using GPS, or using a number of apps simultaneously can overwork the device. Cut down on how you use the phone during charging or don’t use it at all until charging is finished.
  • As a last resort, consider performing a factory reset and restoring the phone with a backup, then charge the device again to see if it still becomes hot.

Problem: Unable to charge phone

The Axon 7 has a Quick Charge feature that allows it to be charged within a relatively short amount of time. However, sometimes the phone doesn’t charge as quickly as expected or doesn’t charge at all.

Potential solutions:

  • As with the above charging problem, check the charging port on the phone for damage and clear out any debris or dust.
  • Check the charging cable for damage as well, and consider using a different cable to confirm if the problem is with the phone or the charger.
    • If the problem is with the phone, reach out to ZTE Support.
    • If the problem is with the charger you usually use, it may be time to buy a new charger or borrow one.
  • It’s possible this could be a calibration issue that’s preventing the phone from recognizing it’s actually being charged. There’s an app called Advanced Battery Calibrator that may help.

Annoyance: Phone runs slowly

If you’ve been using your Axon 7 for a while, it may be running a bit slower than it did on day one. This is normal, as you’ve undoubtedly installed new apps and data, but in some cases, the phone will run much more slowly than it should.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart the device.
  • Check for a new software update by heading to Settings > All Settings > Updates.
  • If the slowdown becomes more noticeable after installing certain apps, consider uninstalling them to see if the phone speeds back up.
  • If you have a bunch of apps running in the background, force stop them by going to Settings > All Settings > Apps > the app you wish to stop > Force stop.
  • Back up your data and perform a factory reset.

Issue: Unable to make or answer calls

Being able to make and take phone calls is one of the primary functions of a smartphone, and so it’s a major issue when it doesn’t work. If you’re unable to make or take calls on your ZTE Axon 7, here are a few things to look into to determine the cause.

Potential solutions:

  • As always, start by restarting the device.
  • Check for an update from both ZTE and your carrier.
  • There’s a feature known as Call barring that can restrict the calls made from the phone and directed to the phone. Open the Phone app > Gear icon > Call settings > Carrier settings, then touch your nano-SIM card, followed by Call barring settings. From here, you can adjust the restrictions placed on your phone, if any have been added.
  • Make sure your nano-SIM card(s) are installed correctly. Remove them, then reinsert them and try the call again. Note: If one card is already connected to a phone call, the other card cannot be reached.
  • Perform a factory reset and try the call again after restoring from a backup.
  • Reach out to your carrier.

Problem: Poor battery life

While the Axon 7 touts fantastic battery life, some users can experience excessive battery drain, even after the phone has been fully charged, and without heavily using their phone. This is yet another problem that can, and has, occurred with other smartphones, and the methods to check and save battery life are largely the same.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart the device to see if that alleviates the issue.
  • Go to Settings > All Settings > Power Manager to see which apps have been using the battery the most and consider force stopping them or uninstalling them completely. With Power Manager, you can also enable battery saving mode.
  • Consider adjusting some settings to cut down on the amount of power your phone uses, such as the brightness level, automatic email syncing, Dual SIM and GPS.
    • Brightness – Settings > All Settings > Display > Brightness level.
    • Email sync – Settings > All Settings > Account > tap the account category > account name > uncheck the box for sync settings.
    • Dual SIM – Settings > All Settings > Dual Sim Settings > uncheck box for SIM 2 Moblile data.
    • GPS – Settings > All Settings > Location > turn off the button located in the top-right corner of the display.
  • Reset the phone to factory settings.
  • If problems persist, reach out to ZTE Support, there may be something wrong with the battery.

Issue: Fingerprint scanner not working

While the fingerprint scanner can be incredibly useful when it comes to security and features like Android Pay, the scanner isn’t perfect. Sometimes you may find that it doesn’t accurately read the fingerprint registered to the device.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart the phone.
  • Check for an update and install it, if there is one.
  • Your fingerprint can be used to Wake up and unlock your phone, Take photo, or Answer call. Go to Settings > All Settings > Fingerprint, and double check the toggles next to each one to make sure the functions you want are still turned on.
  • Clean the area around the scanner, as well as your own hands. Dirt, dust, and other debris can interfere with the scan.
  • Remove any pre-existing fingerprints and add them again. Remove them by going to Settings > All Settings > Fingerprint. Tap an existing print to see the option to delete it. Re-add it by going to Settings > All Settings > Fingerprint, then tap either Register or Fingerprint > Add Fingerprint. Note: Consider adding the same fingerprint more than once, and from different angles.

Annoyance: Auto-rotate not working

Smartphones usually automatically rotate their displays depending on the orientation of the phone, but some people have had issues with auto-rotate on the ZTE Axon 7. If you find that it gets stuck in landscape or portrait, then here’s what to try:

Potential solutions:

  • Head to Settings > Display and make sure auto-rotate screen is still enabled.
  • Restarting the device has fixed the problem for some, but it has only served as a temporary workaround for others.
  • Check for an update and install it, if there is one. This seems to have fixed the issue for some people.
  • A recently installed app could also be the cause of the issue. Delete any apps that were installed before the problem began, or launch the phone into Safe Mode to see if the problem persists. If it doesn’t, it’s likely an app is the reason. Boot your phone into Safe Mode by turning your phone on and holding the Power button, then tap and hold the Power off option when it appears. Tap OK to enter Safe Mode.
  • Perform a factory reset and restore the phone from a backup to see if the problem remains.
  • It could be a hardware issue that you can’t fix. In that case, reach out to ZTE Support.

Issue: Poor Wi-Fi connection or unable to connect to Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi is almost as important, if not more important, to a smartphone as being able to make and receive calls and texts. Of course, Wi-Fi problems are common across all devices, and the ways to deal with them are largely the same.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart the phone and the router. Turn both off for several seconds, then back on and try to connect to Wi-Fi again.
  • Check for an update for your phone. If the problems are only related to certain apps, check and make sure they’ve been updated as well.
  • If you’ve enabled power saving mode (Settings > All Settings > Power Manager), disable it, as it affects Wi-Fi.
  • Go to Settings > All Settings > Wi-Fi > three dotted icon > Advanced > MAC Address and make sure it’s allowed in the router’s own MAC filter.
  • Forget the Wi-Fi connection you’re trying to connect to by going to Settings > All Settings > Wi-Fi. Make sure Wi-Fi is turned on, then tap the three vertical dots icon > Saved networks > your Wi-Fi connection > Forget. Re-add it by following the aforementioned steps, but after tapping the three vertical dots icon, tap Add Network, then enter the necessary information.
  •  Perform a factory reset.

Issue: Unable to connect or use Bluetooth

Similar to the Wi-Fi problems mentioned above, Bluetooth problems are also very common with all sorts of devices. Whether you’re trying to connect your ZTE Axon 7 with a car, or other accessories that connect via Bluetooth, you might run into an issue. Luckily, there are a few things you can try to get the feature working again.

Potential solutions:

  • Restart the phone and, if possible, the device you’re trying to connect to.
  • Check for a software update for your phone.
  • Go to Settings > All Settings > Bluetooth and make sure the feature has been turned on. Consider turning Bluetooth off and on again.
  • Ensure the Bluetooth device has been charged and is still functional. Additionally, try another Bluetooth device to make sure your Axon 7 can still connect successfully. If not, it may be a hardware issue that requires reaching out to ZTE Support.
  • Forget any paired devices by going to Settings > All Settings > Bluetooth, then tap the gear icon next to the Bluetooth device > Forget. Re-add it and attempt the connection again.
  • Boot the phone into Safe Mode and try connecting again. If successful, a recently installed app could be interfering. Uninstall any apps that have been added recently and try the connection again.
  • Try a factory reset.