Common Treatments for Lack of Dataflow on Mobile Devices

Another quick one for tonight.

For the techies amongst us this post should come as no surprise but for others who may struggle with these fancy mobile gizmos. Sometimes a smartphone or a tablet device will simply refuse to load webpages or send and receive e-mail. Try as you might, repeatedly refreshing the page doesn’t work and cursing doesn’t get you too far either.

Here are some logical steps you can go through to try and solve the problem:

  1. Switch your device to flight mode, wait about ten seconds and then switch off flight mode. This may help to reset the communications stack in your phone so that it isn’t jammed up.
  2. Failing that, turn your device off and wait ten seconds before switching it back on. If the communications stack is really gummed up, restarting your device is usually the next best course of action.
  3. If that still doesn’t work, try reseating your SIM card or trying it in another device. SIM cards on the odd occasion can become faulty so making sure it still works in another device can help rule it out being an issue.
  4. Failing the above you may need to reset the network settings on your phone. Some devices have a button buried away in the settings that will do this for you, otherwise you will need to manually delete and recreate the required settings.
  5. At this point, you might want to call up your carrier and check if there are any issues with your account or the service in general. Sometimes it’s not you but it’s them.
  6. Perhaps as a last resort, initiate a factory reset on the device. This more than likely means you will lose all of your data but you will have a device that is reset back to when it came out of the box.

If all of the above fails, you could be looking at a hardware problem which means either a call to your carrier or manufacturer to confirm the fault and a look at the options to replace or repair the unit. Don’t delay as “Early Life Failure” and warranty periods may differ between carriers and manufacturers and you’ll need to continue paying for your service even though you may not be able to use it in the mean time.

This is a rough guide and probably the order in which a technical support agent would step you through anyway (from least detrimental to most detrimental to data). Whilst it may seem long winded to find that the fourth step actually fixed your problem and the first three steps did nothing, it’s important to follow a rational methodology when working with electronics and data.

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