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20 common problems with the HTC One M8, and how to fix them

HTC 1 M8 top screen
Image used with permission by copyright holder
It’s no secret that we’re fans of the HTC One M8. It’s a gorgeous looking handset and offers unique features and qualities that make it stand out. But no matter how much we like it, it’s not a perfect device. Like all smartphones, it has its share of problems. We’ve found some of the most common issues with the HTC One M8 and have provided some possible solutions for you to try should you run into them.

Problem: Camera lens scratched

A lot of people have had issues with the camera lens on the HTC One M8 getting scratched. Over time it can pick up so many scratches that it has an impact on the photos you are taking. The general consensus is that the scratching generally shows up on a special coating that’s an extra layer on top of the glass lens, possibly to reduce reflections or fingerprint smudges.

Potential solutions:

  • If you can take it back to HTC or your carrier without a major hassle, then there’s a good chance they’ll be able to replace it or fix it for you. The advantage here is that they’ll make sure the coating stays intact or replace it.
  • A lot of people have reported success by using toothpaste or another mild abrasive to remove the coating, leaving a pristine glass lens beneath. If you do try this then make sure you are very gentle and don’t use anything too powerful. The disadvantage is that you no longer have the protective coating. You could consider replacing it yourself with a screen protector.

Glitch: Headphones not working

Quite a few One M8 owners have run into a glitch where they plug their headphones in and the phone doesn’t recognize them. When they play music it continues to come out of the speakers and the headphone icon doesn’t appear on screen.

Potential solutions:

  • The first thing to is try your headphones with another device, just to make sure they’re definitely working.
  • Make sure that the headphone port is free of dust and debris. Blow into it, or even better use some compressed air.
  • Go to Settings > Power and make sure that Fast boot is turned off. Turn the One M8 off and then hold Volume down and Power together. When you see the menu use the Volume buttons to highlight recovery and the Power key to select it. The phone will reboot and when the red triangle appears on screen you need to press and hold the Volume up button and press the Power button once. You should see another menu and you can use the Volume buttons to highlight wipe cache partition and the Power button to select it. When it’s done you want to select reboot and test if the problem is gone.
  • You can check if a third-party app is the problem. Press and hold the Power key then touch and hold Power off and when you see Reboot to safe mode tap Restart. If the problem is gone then it’s definitely an app causing it. You can uninstall one by one and test or you can factory reset.
  • You could try a factory reset. You’ll need to back up everything first and then go to Settings > Backup & reset > Reset phone. After it’s complete install apps selectively and watch out for the problem returning, just in case it’s related to a third-party app.
  • If you’re still having the issue then it could be a hardware fault. It’s time to contact HTC.

Issue: HTC One M8 won’t turn on

Some people are panicking after their One M8 refuses to turn on, even though it should have power. They’ve tried plugging it into the charger and holding the power button, but to no avail. This is actually a common problem with smartphones and it’s usually easy to fix.

Potential solutions:

  • The first thing to try is just holding down the Power button for a while. Hold it down for much longer than you normally would and just wait. Time yourself for 20 seconds.
  • Now try holding down Power and Volume up together for 10 seconds or so and it should restart.
  • If that doesn’t work then turn the phone off and try holding down the Power and Volume down buttons together for a similar length of time. You should get a menu with an option to reboot
  • If it still isn’t switching on then try plugging it into your PC via USB and then work through the steps above again.
  • If none of that works then you need to contact HTC.

Problem: Lag after update

A lot of M8 owners are suffering from lag and a bit of instability after the Android 5.0 Lollipop update. There are a couple of things worth trying.

Potential solutions:

  • Try a simple turn off and on again. Hold down the Power button and then tap Power off. See if the lag is gone when you turn it back on again.
  • The next thing to try is wiping the cache partition. Turn the phone off and then press and hold Power and Volume down until you see the Android screen. Use the Volume buttons to highlight recovery and Power to select it. Use the Volume buttons again to highlight wipe cache partition and Power to select. When it’s finished highlight reboot and see if your One M8 is back to normal.
  • If the problem persists it may be down to a specific app. Try pressing and holding the Power button and then tap and hold on Power off and when you see Reboot to safe mode tap Restart. If the problem is gone in safe mode then there’s a good chance that a third-party app is to blame. You can either uninstall one by one or factory reset and be careful what you reinstall.

Bug: Rapid battery drain

Your One M8 battery life is going to gradually decline, but some owners have found a rapid drain bug rearing its ugly head after updating the phone software. It’s highly likely this is down to a specific app.

Potential solutions:

  • Try turning it off, hold down the Power button and tap Power off, and then turn it back on again.
  • Go to Settings > Power and take a look at Usage and History. You may be able to find the cause of your problem here. If there’s an app guzzling all your power then make sure it’s up to date and if it is, uninstall it and try to find a replacement.
  • Some people have attributed the problem to Wi-Fi scanning. Go to Settings > Wi-Fi and hit the menu to choose Advanced Wi-Fi and make sure that Scanning always available is off.
  • If you’re unsure what the cause is then it might be worth trying a factory reset. It’s a hassle, but there’s a good chance your One M8 will perform better afterwards. Backup all your precious stuff and go to Settings > Backup & reset > Reset phone. When it’s done, be careful about what you install, and make sure that you watch out for the problem returning.
  • For more general ideas, check out tips for saving smartphone battery life.

Problem: Notifications keep vibrating

A few people are getting fed up because instead of vibrating a couple of times when a new notification comes in, like it used to, their One M8 is vibrating repeatedly unless they actually clear the notification. This problem is affecting people after upgrading to Android 5.0 Lollipop and luckily it’s really easy to fix.


  • Go to Settings > Accessibility and turn Notification reminder off.

Glitch: LED not workingHTC One M8 hands on front

A number of people have found that the LED isn’t working on their new HTC One M8. It’s supposed to flash for notifications, such as a new email or a text message. Most people are reporting that it works for charging and low battery, by displaying orange or green, although it may be dim, but it isn’t flashing at all for notifications.

Potential fixes:

  • First you need to check in Settings > Display & gestures > Notification light and make sure that it is turned on for the notifications you want.
  • There’s a good chance that the LED not working is related to a specific app. You can test this by booting into safe mode. Hold down the Power button until the options pop up and then tap and hold Power off until the Reboot to safe mode option appears and tap Restart to confirm. You’ll see the words “Safe mode” at the bottom left corner of the screen if it worked. Alternatively, you can power the phone off completely then press and hold the power button until the HTC logo appears, let go of the power button and press and hold the volume down button until safe mode appears at the bottom left. Simply hold down the power button and then choose Restart to get out of safe mode.
  • If it is an app causing the glitch, you have to find which one. Go to Settings > Apps and take a look at the All tab. Any app related to messaging is most likely to be the culprit. Some people on Verizon reported success after disabling Verizon Messages and then restarting the phone. You can try your apps one by one, or you can do a factory reset and selectively reinstall them.
  • If you’re still having problems and it doesn’t seem to be app related then you should request a replacement handset.

Problem: Low volume during calls

A few One M8 owners have been complaining about low volume during calls. It may sound as though the other caller is whispering or leave you wondering whether they’ve hung up. This seems to be an issue even if the volume is turned up to maximum.


  • Try changing the position of the speaker, it’s directional and the sound is really only coming out of the left side of the speaker grill. Hold it slightly away from your ear and try moving it until you get a clearer sound.
  • You could also go to Settings > Call and turn Hearing Aids mode on.
  • You could try using a Bluetooth headset.

Potential solutions:

  • Make sure that there’s nothing blocking the speaker grill. Try firing some compressed air in there.
  • Return the phone and try to get a replacement handset from your retailer, carrier, or HTC.

Problem: Booting into safe mode

Apparently a few HTC One M8 units have been booting into safe mode straight out of the box. You’ll know if yours is one of them because it will say “Safe mode” at the bottom left of the screen.

Potential fixes:

  • Simply restarting the phone should be enough to get out of safe mode. Hold down the Power key and then select Restart and select it again to confirm. The phone should boot normally.
  • If it reboots and it’s still in safe mode, try a factory reset. You’ll need to save anything you want to keep first. Go to Settings > Backup & reset > Reset phone and choose Erase all data, then OK.

Problem: Wi-Fi won’t connect, keeps disconnecting, or slowHTC One M8 hands on settings

A number of people have run into problems with the Wi-Fi on the HTC One M8. It may be refusing to connect, perhaps it drops and fails to reconnect automatically, or maybe it’s just running at a very slow speed compared to another device.


  • Try switching Airplane mode on and off again or hold down the power button and restart the phone.
  • Restart the HTC One M8 and restart your router. It might work again temporarily, but the problem could return.

Potential fixes:

  • Delete your connection and manually re-enter all the details to set it up.
  • Install the free Wi-Fi Analyzer app and make sure that your channels aren’t too crowded. You may want to tweak some settings on the router.
  • Make sure that your router’s firmware is up to date.
  • Take a look at your router’s settings, check the Mac filter, and see if anything looks wrong.

Problem: Extreme Power Saving mode is missing

One of the features that HTC trotted out in its announcement of the One M8 was an Extreme Power Saving mode. The mode would send the phone into an almost hibernation stage, only allowing through the most minimal of information and allowing the phone to stay alive for 15 hours on just 5 percent battery life. That mode is missing on some HTC One M8 handsets, an issue that has mostly plagued United States owners. The reason for this is because U.S. carriers are shipping a version of the smartphone that is running an earlier software version than the one with Extreme Power Saving.

Solution: Users without Extreme Power Saving will have to wait for a software update to arrive. The phone hasn’t been out for too long, but updates should start rolling out fairly soon. You can always check for system updates by going to SettingsSoftware Updates Check Now. The HTC software version that includes Extreme Power Saving mode will be version 1.54.401.5 and up.

Malfunction: No SIM card error

A fair number of HTC One M8 owners have reported an error message that occasionally displays on their phone that the SIM card has not been detected properly. This error often pops up at random and has been known to arise multiple times over the course of use with no real rhyme or reason.

Potential Solutions:

  • You can find the SIM card tray and eject the SIM card using a paper clip or pin to pop out the tray. Reseat or readjust the card, re-insert it, and see if it solves the problem.
  • Attempt to clean the SIM card and the gold contacts on it with rubbing alcohol applied to a microfiber cloth. Clean carefully to avoid any damage, and dry the card before re-inserting it.
  • To add an extra layer to the SIM card to prevent it from shaking loose within its tray, thicken the card with a few thin layers of tape. Make sure not to cover the gold plates on the card. This could add enough size to make sure the SIM card doesn’t fall loose again.
  • If all else fails, you can always take the handset back to the store and have it or the SIM card replaced.

Annoyance: Keyboard keeps changing language

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Some users have had a difficult time with the HTC keyboard. Specifically, some users find they are suddenly typing in entirely different languages. This isn’t so much a software problem as it is clumsy fingers or poor spacing on the keyboard itself, but it’s an annoyance either way.


  • Get a different keyboard. Check out SwiftKey and you’ll probably never look back. You might even prefer the free Google Keyboard.


  • If you’d like to stick with the default keyboard and just eliminate the issue with the other language, open the SMS app, bring up the keyboard, and hold the cog button to bring up the keyboard settings menu. Tap Keyboard Selection and uncheck the languages that you won’t use.

Problem: Phone crashes at random

Some users have reported the HTC One M8 crashing during use. Those who has mentioned the problem have not noticed a pattern in usage to cause such an occurrence. The phone simply reboots on occasion without any prompting.

Possible Solutions:

  • A factory reset seems to be the first solution to the problem. Go to Settings > Backup & reset > Reset phone > Erase all data > OK to perform the reset.
  • If you believe it is a specific app or program causing the issue, go to Settings > Power > Usage. This will show you if any app in particular is eating away at resourcing and wreaking havoc on your handset.

Malfunction: Camera app crashes in portrait mode

Outside of the complaints about the quality of photos captured by the HTC One M8 — sorry, not much we can do about that one — there have been reports of the camera crashing during use in portrait mode. Some users have even reported that there are no issues with the camera in landscape, but changing orientations causes the HTC camera app to crash.


This issues has been tracked to a specific app. LastPass, the popular password manager tool, has been causing the problem thanks to its latest update. The good news is you won’t have to delete the app or use a different photo app. They can live in harmony. Here’s what you’ll have to do:

  • Log into the LastPass application
  • Go to PreferencesEdit App Associations
  • Select Camera
  • Change the selection to “Do not show fill window”

By all accounts, this seems to do the trick.

Bug: Bluetooth won’t connect

HTC One M8 hands on pairing
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Bluetooth is one of those problems that pops up with just about every phone, especially when it comes to trying to connect with a car. The HTC One M8 is no exception to the rule, and it has its own share of issues with Bluetooth connectivity. There are a lot of ways to break through these issues, including persistence, but here are some that seem to work.

Possible solutions:

  • Make sure that the firmware in all devices is up to date.
  • Delete the previous pairings between the HTC One M8 and the other device. Go to SettingsBluetooth to do so. After completing the process, try to connect again.
  • For issues related to sending messages, make sure Message access is on by going to SettingsBluetoothAdvanced.
  • Avoid special characters when naming your device. Make sure you haven’t given your device a crazy name by going to SettingsBluetooth and checking the Device name.

Bug: Phone always appears to be roaming

A handful of users have noticed that their HTC One M8 always appears to be roaming. This could be a concern for anyone who doesn’t want their cell bill to be incredibly high even though they are making calls from well within their region of service. This is a known bug and HTC promises that users seeing the roaming signal at all times are not being charged for roaming services.


This comes down to a software update that should be on the way soon. To check and see if your HTC One M8 is up to date and has the latest firmware, go to Settings > Software Updates Check Now

Malfunction: Email app isn’t working

HTC provides its own apps for the HTC One M8, but some of those have been problematic for users. Specifically, the search function of the HTC email app doesn’t yield results in a timely manner and has trouble displaying messages.


If you find yourself with this problem, you are likely a Yahoo mail user. Yahoo and the HTC mail app don’t seem to play nice together. The default values are incorrect. You can follow these steps, provided by Yahoo, to fix the problem:

  • Open the Menu button on your Home screen.
  • Tap Apps.
  • Tap the Mail icon.
  • Tap Other (POP3/IMAP).
  • Enter your Yahoo account information.

If an error occurs throughout the process, try the following:

  • Tap Manual Setup.
  • Tap IMAP.
  • Enter the following server setting information:
    • Incoming server:
    • Port #: 993
    • Security type: SSL (accepts all certificates)
    • Outgoing Server:
    • Port #: 465
  • Keep all of the other settings the same.
  • Complete the setup process.

Glitch: Dead or stuck pixels

HTC 1 M8 bottom screenDespite the pretty screen on the HTC One M8, there have been some complaints about dead pixels — pixels that won’t light up — and stuck pixels — ones that are permanently on — with the displays. This can ruin the viewing experience for the One M8 user.

Possible solutions:

  • You can try an app like Dead Pixel Detect and Fix and see if it helps.
  • Some users suggest leaving your screen on for 30 minutes or so on full brightness in an effort to burn away the dead pixels.
  • Return the handset and get a replacement with a screen that doesn’t have this problem.

Bug: HTC TV App won’t connect with TV

The HTC One M8 isn’t just designed to be in your pocket on the go, but in your hand while you’re in the living room. An IR blaster in the device makes it capable of becoming your TV remote. But that’s assuming it works, which by the accounts of some users has not been the case. The error message “Unable to retrieve data” appears after attempting the setup process.

Possible Solutions:

  • Make sure your service provider offers support for the app. Simple as it sounds, some providers are not compatible.
  • Run through the setup process again, making sure that you’ve followed the process properly and completed every step. Sometimes it just takes a few tries to get the app to pick up the information.
  • Go to Settings > Apps and find the HTC TV app. Clear the data for the app and try the setup process again.
  • Make sure the app is up to date. An older version of the app seemed to have more problems than the current one.

If you’ve run into any other HTC One M8 problems or, even better, found a solution that isn’t listed, then please post a comment and share. You will also a lot of great advice over at the XDA Developers forum for the HTC One M8.

Article originally published on 4-22-2014. Updated on 3-31-2015 by Simon Hill: Reformatted and added problems with camera lens scratching, headphone not working, won’t turn on, lag after update, rapid battery drain, and repeated vibrations on notifications.

AJ Dellinger
AJ Dellinger is a freelance reporter from Madison, Wisconsin with an affinity for all things tech. He has been published by…
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