Yes, the fancy new HTC One M8 is out now, but the HTC One isn’t going anywhere fast. You can check out our HTC One review for the full story, but every smartphone has its flaws. In this article, we’ll round up the most commonly reported HTC One problems and try to offer up some solutions for anyone suffering from this beautiful phone’s known issues.
Updated on 07-18-2014 by Simon Hill: Added no sound through headphones problem, random reboots, and the won’t turn on problem.
Click on an issue to jump to it:
- Problem: No sound through headphones
- Glitch: Random reboots
- Problem: HTC One won’t turn on
- Glitch: Camera won’t work
- Problem: Overheating
- Bug: Microphone not working
- Glitch: Background noise or static
- Problem: Gaps, rough edges, bulges, or scratches
- Malfunction: Proximity sensors not working
- Malfunction: Unresponsive Home or Back buttons
- Glitch: Dead or stuck pixels
- Problem: Blue/purple/red noise in low light photos
- Annoyance: Takes a long time to charge
- Bug: Bluetooth won’t auto-connect
- Malfunction: No SIM card error
- Problem: Wi-Fi won’t connect or “Authentication problem”
Quite a few people seem to have run into a problem with the earphones or headphones not working with their HTC One. They plug in as usual, but no sound will come through them. The sound through the speaker remains unaffected. First of all you should try the headphones in a different device to make sure they are working.
- Try unplugging and plugging them in again.
- Some people found that going into the Settings and turning Beats Audio off and on again made a difference.
- Make sure that the end of the headphone jack is clean and that there’s nothing in the port. Compressed air is ideal for clearing out the port if there is something in there.
- If nothing else is working then there’s a good chance that the port itself is faulty and you’ll have to contact HTC about a repair or replacement. It shouldn’t be a problem if you’re still under warranty.
Glitch: Random reboots
Some HTC One owners are finding that the phone randomly reboots itself on occasion. It will simply shut itself down and restart without any obvious trigger. This is most likely to be caused by an app, so pay attention to what you have running when the reboots occur.
- Start by going to Settings > About > Software updates and make sure your HTC One is up to date.
- You should also start up the Play Store app and access the menu from the top left, go to My apps and make sure everything is up to date.
- To verify if a third-party app is to blame, press and hold the Power button and then tap and hold on the Power off option and let go when you see Reboot to safe mode. It will restart and you’ll see safe mode at the bottom left of the screen. If you don’t experience any reboots then it’s down to an app. Press and hold the Power button and choose Restart to get back to normal. You can either go through your apps one by one and uninstall and then test if reboots occur, or you can opt for a backup and factory reset and then selectively reinstall.
Problem: HTC One won’t turn on
It’s a horrible moment when you press that Power button and the blank screen just goes right on staring back at you. Don’t panic, your HTC One is probably not dead. Here’s what to do:
- Press and hold the Power button and the Volume up button together for at least ten seconds. You should feel the phone vibrate and then it should restart as normal.
- If that doesn’t work, plug the phone into your charger and leave it for 20 minutes then try step 1 again.
- If that doesn’t work, try plugging your HTC One into your computer or laptop, leave it for 20 minutes, then try step one again.
Glitch: Camera won’t work
If you find that the camera on your HTC One refuses to load then you are not alone, and there is a potential solution. You might get the message “Unable to start the camera,” or maybe it’s just frozen on a static image, or it frequently crashes back to the home screen. Whatever the case, try these steps in order.
- Try going to Settings > Apps > Camera and Force stop, then Clear cache and Clear data.
- Try going to Settings > Power and turn off Fast boot.
- Hold down the power button until the HTC One reboots. See if it will load up now.
A lot of people have reported concerns about the HTC One overheating. There’s a distinction here between getting warm and getting so hot that the phone turns itself off. Bear in the mind that the aluminum body of the HTC One may feel warmer than a plastic phone would. If you’re doing something intensive, like gaming, then it’s going to heat up. If it’s getting hot when you’re not using it, or overheating to the point of turning itself off then you have a problem.
- Some cases can really prevent the heat escaping and cause your phone to overheat. If you’ve got a case on it try removing it and see if the overheating stops.
- Consider the environment, too. If you’re in a hot car, it’s going to heat the phone up, try and keep it out of direct sunlight.
- It’s possible than an app is causing your problem. If you don’t notice the overheating occurring with a specific app, then take a look in Settings > Power > Usage. Is anything eating an unusually large amount of your battery life?
- It may be quicker to back up anything precious and factory reset the phone. You can do it via Settings > Backup & reset > Reset phone > Erase all data > OK. Now be selective about what you load back on and watch out for the problem cropping up again.
Bug: Microphone not working
There have been lots of HTC One owners complaining about the microphone. During calls the other caller may report that you sound muffled and the sound quality is poor. Switching to speaker alleviates the problem, but no one wants to have to use speaker phone all the time. There are two microphones on the HTC One: one on the bottom edge and one on the back at the top to the right of the camera.
- Very carefully take a needle, or even better get a can of compressed air, and make sure that there’s no dust or dirt stuck in either of your microphones.
- If you use a case try taking it off and see if the problem is gone. It may be that one or both of the microphones are being blocked.
- Some people have reported success by actually covering the microphone on the back, you could hold it in such a way as it’s covered, or you could put a piece of tape over it.
- If none of that works then you might want to try and arrange a replacement.
Glitch: Background noise or static
A number of people have been complaining about a buzzing sound or background static. The problem is most common through the speakers, but can be heard when using headphones as well. Some people report hissing through the headphones when listening to music, especially noticeable during gaps in the audio. Others are reporting popping sounds from the speakers, most noticeably after notifications come in. There is also hissing for some during voice calls, and stuttering during audio playback.
It’s not clear whether this is a hardware or software issue. Some people have returned their handsets for replacements and report the exact same problem occurring on the new one as well.
Workarounds: You may not be able to get rid of the problem entirely, but you can reduce it by turning off Beats Audio via the gear icon in the Notifications panel. Some people report that having NFC turned on makes it worse as well, so turn that off, too.
- There might be a software update eventually that will address this issue, but HTC hasn’t confirmed the problem, so there’s no guarantee.
- You can try getting a replacement handset in the hope that it’s a hardware issue and the new one won’t have the same problem. There are plenty of people reporting that they have no audio issues with their HTC One handsets. Contact HTC, your retailer, or carrier to report the issue.
Problem: Gaps, rough edges, bulges, or scratches
It seems that some HTC One handsets shipped in less than perfect condition. There have been several reports of build quality problems with gaps between the plastic and metal, strange bulges, mysterious scratches on the body, and edges that feel rough to the touch.
Solution: This is really straightforward and there’s only one course of action to take. If you’re unhappy with the build quality of your HTC One, you should return it. Contact the retailer where you bought it, explain the problem, and you’ll get a replacement handset.
Malfunction: Proximity sensors not working
A few people have reported that their sensors aren’t working correctly. You may notice that the capacitive buttons don’t light up and this could actually be a sign that the sensor isn’t working. Try covering the sensors (top left) with your finger and see if the capacitive buttons light up. You can also test the sensors using a free app called Android Sensor Box.
Solution: If they aren’t working then it’s a hardware fault and you’ll have to return the phone and get a replacement.
Malfunction: Unresponsive Home or Back buttons
Many owners have highlighted an issue with the capacitive Home and Back buttons either side of the HTC logo beneath the screen. It seems they are unresponsive some of the time. This might be a bigger problem if you are using a screen protector. If this is a software issue, HTC will release an update to fix it at some point, but in the meantime there is something you can try.
Workaround: If you tap lock and then unlock, or tap on the touchscreen and then try the buttons again, you might find that they are more responsive.
- Go to Settings > Language & keyboard > HTC Sense input > Advanced > Calibration tool and just use a very light touch to calibrate. You should now find that the Home and Back keys are a little more responsive.
- You could turn on Vibrate feedback in Settings > Sound to make sure that you are touching the button correctly (apparently the capacitive area is small and you have to be precise).
Glitch: Dead or stuck pixels
There have been quite a few complaints about dead pixels (pixels which won’t light up at all) and stuck pixels (pixels which stay permanently on) on new HTC One handsets.
- You can try an app like Dead Pixel Detect and Fix and see if it helps.
- You can return the handset and get a replacement.
Problem: Blue/purple/red noise in low light photos
HTC outfitted the One with a pretty solid camera. When we first got our hands on it, we weren’t sure what to expect from the phone’s 4 “UltraPixels,” but we were pleasantly surprised when we started shooting. It takes great photos, but many people have come forth with complaints about its performance in low light, citing pictures with blue, purple, or red noise where there should be black. HTC has now acknowledged this issue and a possible software update with a fix is in the works. Here’s what you can try in the meantime.
- Turn down your ISO. This will reduce the camera’s sensitivity to light and help make your photos less grainy and noisy.
- If tweaking your camera settings doesn’t help, you can always return your handset and get a replacement.
- Make sure that your HTC One software is up to date via Settings > About > Software updates.
Annoyance: Takes a long time to charge
The HTC One does have a bigger battery than many smartphones, rated at 2,300mAh, and some owners have been complaining that it takes a long time to charge. You may be used to your smartphone being fully charged within three hours, but the HTC One is likely to take four hours or longer. Apparently HTC has taken precautions to ensure that the battery lasts (since it isn’t removable) and this partly accounts for the longer charging time. If it seems to be taking a lot longer than that then there are a couple of things worth checking.
- Are you using the charger that shipped with the phone? If you’re using an older charger or plugging it into your computer via USB to charge, then it will take longer. If you are using the charger that came with your HTC One, then you might try a different charger, just to make sure that the original isn’t faulty.
- Have you got a lot of apps running on the phone while it is charging? The less that’s active and syncing, the faster the phone will charge.
Bug: Bluetooth won’t auto-connect
A lot of people run into problems getting their smartphones to automatically connect to Bluetooth devices, especially in the car. Some people have found that specific functions don’t work. We’ve seen a few complaints from HTC One owners about Bluetooth issues and there are a few potential fixes worth trying.
- Try deleting all the previous pairings on the car’s system and on the HTC One, via Settings > Bluetooth, and then try to connect again.
- If you have trouble sending messages then go to Settings > Bluetooth > Advanced and make sure that Message access is on.
- Make sure that your Device name under Settings > Bluetooth isn’t something complicated (avoid special characters).
- Check that the firmware in your car, or where applicable, on the Bluetooth device you are trying to connect to, is up to date.
- Try installing a free app like Bluetooth File Transfer; it seems to have solved the issue for some people.
Malfunction: No SIM card error
A number of HTC One owners have encountered an error message about the SIM card not being detected properly. This problem has popped up on a few smartphones, including a number of HTC’s previous releases. It is most likely caused by poor contact between the SIM card and the phone.
- You could take it back and try a replacement handset, or possibly a new SIM card.
- The SIM card tray is at the top of the left spine and you’ll need to insert the SIM card ejector pin (or a paper clip) in the hole to pop the tray out. Sometimes just making sure it’s reseated properly and re-inserting will solve the problem.
- Try gently cleaning the gold contacts on the SIM card with some rubbing alcohol and a microfiber cloth. Make sure it’s completely dry before you re-insert it and make sure there’s no dust or debris in the tray.
- You can also add one or more layers of tape, or a small piece of card to the other side of the SIM card without the gold contacts and then re-insert it. If it’s loose then this will potentially solve the problem.
Problem: Wi-Fi won’t connect or “Authentication problem”
Wi-Fi issues are common with all smartphones and tablets and the HTC One is not an exception. A lot of people have run into issues trying to connect to different Wi-Fi routers, and there are several reports about an “Authentication problem” message popping up on the phone. We have a few ideas that might help.
- Turn your router and your HTC One off for 30 seconds and then turn them both on again and retry the connection.
- Delete the connection on your HTC One and re-enter the details manually.
- Some people report success after turning Wi-Fi off, turning Airplane mode on, then turning Wi-Fi on again, and then Airplane mode off.
- Try installing the free Wi-Fi Analyzer app and find out how crowded the channels are. If that looks like an issue then change the channel on your Wi-Fi router.
- Make sure that your router firmware is up to date.
- Check the authentication protocol on the router and review the other settings. Make sure Mac filtering isn’t turned on.
If you’ve run into any other HTC One 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.
Updated on 3-25-2014 by Simon Hill: Added camera error, overheating problem, and microphone issue.
Updated on 11-13-2013 by Simon Hill: Added Bluetooth problem, Wi-Fi connection issue, and no SIM card error.
Updated on 8-26-2013: Added the camera issue.
Article originally published on 5-02-2013.