Android

Pro tip: Solving Android sync problems

Jack Wallen shows you how to solve Google data sync issues on your Android device.

Android sync error

You may find your Android device, out of nowhere, having sync issues with one or more Google services. This could affect your calendar, contacts, email... any service listed under your Google account. No matter how many times you tap the sync now button, you still get the error indicating that there's a problem with sync at the moment (and to try again later). Later comes around, and the issue still exists. What do you do?

I have two solutions, and both work most of the time — although the second is a bit more time-consuming and requires being on a Wi-Fi network. Without further adieu, let's fix your syncing issue. I will demonstrate on a Verizon-branded LG G3.

The easy fix

The first fix is simple. Turn off data to your phone, wait a moment, and turn it back on. If this doesn't work on the first try, do this:

  1. Turn off data
  2. Turn off your phone
  3. Turn your phone back on
  4. Turn data back on

How you turn on/off data will depend upon your device. To do this on the LG G3, follow these steps:

  1. Open up Settings
  2. Tap the Networks tab
  3. Tap the slider for Mobile data (Figure A) until it is in the OFF position
  4. To turn data back on, tap the slider again until it is in the ON position.

Figure A

Figure A

Turning on and off data in the LG G3.

The not-so-easy fix

Some users may cringe at this idea, but if turning off and on data doesn't work, you might well have to delete your Google account and re-add it. The only chance of you losing data is if you've continued to add to your calendar and contacts when sync isn't working. If that's the case, you may have to use an app like Sprite Export Tool to first export your calendar to an SD card. Otherwise, do the following:

  1. Open Settings
  2. Tap the General tab
  3. Under accounts, tap Google (Figure B)
  4. Tap the email address associated with your Google account
  5. Tap the menu button
  6. Tap Remove account
  7. Tap OK

Figure B

Figure B

Removing your Google account.

Make sure you're connected to a Wi-Fi network, go back to Accounts, tap Add account, tap Google, and re-add your account.

At this point, the sync should start up without issue.

If you're on the Android platform, there are always multiple solutions for a problem. Have you had issues with your Android phone syncing data with Google or with other accounts/services? If so, what did you do to solve the problem? Share your experience in the discussion thread below.

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About Jack Wallen

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.

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