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Google Play Store not working? Here's what you can do

Authored by: Loie Favre — 1 month ago

An Android user who hasn't experienced the Google Play Store crashing and burning is a rare species indeed. Whether the problem is an error message when downloading apps, or that the Play Store simply won't open, we have the solutions. Here's what you can do when the Google Play Store doesn't work for you.

androidpit play store 3
If Google Play Store is giving you grief, there are few things you can try. / © ANDROIDPIT

First, we recommend taking a look at our article that explains what the various Play Store error messages mean. Then try our tips below. 

1. Clear the Google Play Store cache

In most cases, you can stop the Play Store faltering just by emptying the app's cache. The cache is a storage area that temporarily holds data so it can be quickly retrieved without needing to be reloaded. To empty the cache:

  • Go to Settings > Apps. Tap All > Google Play Store then finally tap the Clear cache button.
AndroidPIT Google Play Store app info
In the Play Store app, you can clear the cache, clear data and uninstall updates. / © ANDROIDPIT

2. Clear out your Play Store data 

Deleting your data from the Play Store works along the same lines as our first tip, but is more drastic. It sets the app back to square one and gets rid of your saved information, hopefully including whatever glitchy data was causing the problem.

  • As with the previous tip, go to Settings > Apps > Google Play Store, but this time tap Clear data.

3. Uninstall Play Store updates

Sometimes an update to your Play Store app will do more harm than good. If you think that's the case, it makes sense to uninstall that update.

  • Go to Settings > Apps > Google Play Store, then tap the button that says Uninstall updates.This will revert Google Play back to the original version (as it appeared when it was first installed on your device),
  • Next, you'll need to find an older – but still recent – version of the Play Store app to download. The best way to do this is by going to the Google Play Store page on APK Mirror and download it from there.
  • If you need help installing the Play Store APK, we have a guide on how to do it at the link.
androidpit play store apk mirror
You can find previous Play Store versions at APK Mirror. / © ANDROIDPIT

4. Clear data and cache on Google Play Services

If Google Play Store is the beating heart of your Android device, then Google Play Services is its soul. Play Services is the enigmatic background process that brings the scattered pieces together and makes them greater than the sum of their parts. In other words, it allows apps to communicate with different parts of your device, enabling them to sync, send push notifications and so on.

It is possible that Play Store problems could stem from issues with Google Play Services. To solve them: 

  • Go to Settings > Apps > All > Google Play services then tap the Clear cache button. If that fails to solve the problem, come back to this page and tap the Clear data button.
AndroidPIT Google Play Services
Go to the Google Play services page, then scroll down and tap 'Clear Cache' or 'Clear Data' / © ANDROIDPIT

5. Install the latest version of Google Play Services

Another thing that may help is to download and install the latest version of Google Play Services. The most current version of the software is likely to be the most stable, so it's useful to keep it updated. Read our tutorial at the link above to find out how to get the latest version.

AndroidPIT Google Play Services hero
Is your Google Play Services app up to date? / © ANDROIDPIT

6. Reset your Google account on your phone

We're now coming to the slightly more drastic solutions. If your Play Store app still isn't working, then you may need to refresh your Google account on your Android device. To do this, remove your account then add it again.

  • Go to Settings > Accounts then tap Google
  • Tap the Google account you want to remove, then tap the menu icon (three dots) at the top right and tap Remove. Do this for every Google account on your device. 
  • Next, go to Settings > Accounts > Add Account > Google and follow the on-screen steps to re-add your account.
googleaccount1
Removing your Google account then re-adding it could solve your Play Store problems. / © ANDROIDPIT

7. Enable download manager

There is a chance that the Play Store will stop working if your download manager is disabled. If this is the case, the solution is simple. 

  • Go to Settings > Apps / Application Manager > All > Download Manager.
  • If Download Manager is disabled, you'll see a button marked Enable. Simply tap this button to switch Download Manager back on. If all you see are buttons for Force Stop and Disable (possibly grayed-out, as seen below), then Download Manager is not disabled and you can rule this possibility out.
androidpit download manager google play store errors
Disabling the Android download manager wreak cause havoc on your system. / © ANDROIDPIT

8. Perform a factory data reset on your smartphone

If you're still facing problems after having tried all of the above, then you may have little choice but to do a factory reset. Be warned that all of your data will be lost, so perform a complete backup beforehand. To do this:

  • Go to Settings > Backup & reset, then make sure the Back up my data slider is on. Tap Back up account to select which account you want your data backed up to.
  • Once you've done this, go to the Backup & reset menu and tap the Factory data reset button at the bottom. Confirm that you want to do this, and your phone will be as good as new. Your data will be restored when you log back into your Google account.
AndroidPIT Nexus 6 Factory Reset confirm
Make sure you've selected 'Back up my data' before performing a factory reset. / © ANDROIDPIT

9. For rooted users: edit hosts file

If the Play Store won't load for you and your device is rooted, you have an even simpler solution on your hand: just modify your Hosts file for a quick fix.

  • Go to your preferred file manager, then navigate to system/etc/hosts and select the Edit option (this will vary between devices).
  • Add a hashtag (#) to the front of the second set of numbers and save your changes (i.e. change from 127.0.0.1 to #127.0.0.1). Reboot your device, re-add your Google account and your Google Play Store problems should be fixed.

Did these solutions work for you? Do you have any other advice to get the Google Play Store working again? Let us know in the comments.

Loie Favre found her way to her present passion for Android and smartphone technology after experiencing an epiphany when she held her Galaxy Note 2. From that point onwards, you can find her with her nose buried in countless Android apps and different smartphone models, and thanking her lucky stars that she gets to work at something she loves.

210 comments

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  • tatook 2 days ago Link to comment

    PROBLEM WITH PLAY STORE not working.
    My experience. I tried everything. Factory setting etc.
    Then I had the idea of downloading an app through my browser. Twitter was the app. It gave me the choice to download through the browser or Play Store. Well, not having anything to lose, I chose Play store and BINGO. It fixed the problem.
    I believe it's because I took a different direction and caused whatever glitch to unglitch.

    • Zest 2 days ago Link to comment

      Thanks for the info.. That's brilliant too.. But what if u try to update the app later.. Does it work!

  • Have a look in:

    Settings > Data Usage:

    Scroll through the list of apps to Google Play Store, click on it then scroll down to 'Restrict background data' and make sure it is not ticked. Also in the list of aps look for one called 'Media' (it might not be there) and also check that Restrict background data is not ticked. This worked for me ;-)

    • Zest 2 days ago Link to comment

      @Nicky Albertyn... Thanks u so much.. the issue already resolved after I cleared that data from Google service framework..

  • i tried modifying the host file but it is not letting me do it. please help

  • Zest 3 days ago Link to comment

    I did all what u have mentioned above... Actually the factory reset worked with me.. But after a week I am in the same trouble again... Anybody to help old..

  • Anda A 3 days ago Link to comment

    Even after factory reset google store or whatever needs a google account won't work.... What to do? I have an Acer Iconia A1-830... Can someone help...

  • When i initially had the 'Google play has stopped working' i factory restored the galaxy s3 in the past i could set the phone up, this time i choose ' English ', click next and the increasingly frustrating
    ' Google play has stopped working ' pops up. ..it won't let me set my phone up as when you click ' ok ' to that you click ' next ' on ' English ' again. ..and the same happens over and over. ..I'm trying to find the answer on this forum it looks like other's have a similar problem. It was such a good phone until this.

  • Which file.manager can we prepare to go in system.? Oppo mirror 3 user(rooted)

  • modifying the host file works for me... thanks :)

  • I reset my Acer tablet to factory defaults and I could not get Google Play Store to connect. I reset 3 times to no avail. I could search the internet and run other apps. I downloaded the latest version of the Play Store and all is well! Thank You very much!!!

  • My rooted phone is not letting me back in after I resetted it. Im stuck on the intro screen because I cant get google play.. help

  • Thank you. Clearing the play services cache and/or disabling and reenabling the app download manager worked for me. Not sure which as I performed both but it worked. I've been unable to download apps for months despite trying many things.

  • This article was very thorough and well written, BUT even after attempting every option available to me, my play store app STILL won't open! I'm so frustrated, because I don't even know how or when it went wrong... When I try to open it, for a split second, it looks like it usually would, but as soon as it fills the entire screen, it disappears again. My task manager says it's open, but it won't do anything but hide. Idk how to completely remove the app to try again and start fresh, because I'm thinking it's built in... HELP!!?!?

    • Enable WiFi, Go to settings >storage>apps> scroll down for play store, tap on here ,and tap on uninstall update, finishing. this, play store update automatically, see the "look" of play store icon in home screen now . if problem exist remove Google account and add account. Clear cache in settings> storage. Switch off device for a little while and switch on.

  • I have deleted my play store because of lucky patcher and I downloaded play store to google it works,but i can't download apps from it.... Any solution? Plz help!!

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