9 Common Nexus 4 Problems & How to Fix Them

Nexus 4 problems continue to plague users after the device’s move to Android 5.0 Lollipop back in November. While Android 5.0.1 Lollipop fixed some issues, Nexus 4 users continue to complain about various issues with their device. With that in mind, we want to take a look at current Nexus 4 problems and offer some potential solutions.

Two years ago, Google announced and released the Nexus 4, a follow up to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. The Nexus 4 arrived on the scene with a number of new features including a brand new design, a gorgeous display, a speedy processor, a solid camera, two storage sizes, support for a couple of major U.S. carriers, and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.


Over its life span, the Nexus 4 has been updated several times. First with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, then with Android 4.4 KitKat, and more recently with Android 5.0 Lollipop, Google’s brand new OS for Android smartphones and tablets. It has been a long road for some Nexus 4 users, especially those who have dealt with Nexus 4 problems.

Nexus 4 Android 5.0.1 Update Review Early -   4

Nexus 4 problems have been a problem since the early days of its release. And while Google’s tried to crush many of these issues, even the Nexus 4’s latest upgrade, the Android 5.0.1 update, is frustrating some users. Software updates are never perfect and more often than not, they cause trouble for smartphone and tablet owners. These complaints don’t come as a surprise.


Because we continue to see complaints about Nexus 4 issues, today we want to run down some of the most common problems and offer some possible fixes for Nexus 4 users looking for help. Many of these fixes have worked for us in the past though mileage is certainly going to vary from device to device, Nexus 4 user to Nexus 4 user.


How to Fix Nexus 4 Battery Life Problems

Battery life problems are some of the most common problems affecting smartphone users today. Unsurprisingly, Nexus 4 users are dealing with battery life issues on KitKat and on Android 5.0 Lollipop. Google’s Nexus Help forum is full of complaints from Nexus 4 users who are running into battery life problems. And while there is no guaranteed fix, there are some things to try if bad Nexus 4 battery life is affecting the device.

Android updates like Android 5.0 Lollipop and Android 5.0.1 Lollipop aren’t supposed to cause battery drain on Nexus devices. More often than not, these issues are caused by third-party applications behaving badly rather than Google’s updates. Apps are the first place that Nexus 4 users need to look.

Before doing anything, Nexus 4 users will want to keep an eye on the apps and services taking up battery life. Users will be able to find that data in the Battery section of Settings. The Android operating system will breakdown the services sucking up juice from the Nexus 4 and allow users to quickly isolate potential troublemakers.

Galaxy S5 vs Gaalxy Note 3 vs Galaxy S4 vs Nexus 5 vs Moto X vs iPhone 5s vs HTC One-L


After taking down this information, Nexus 4 users will want to update potential problem apps with the latest bug fixes. Apps that haven’t been updated in awhile tend to cause problems, especially after major updates. If installing the latest update doesn’t work, try reinstalling applications. If that doesn’t work, Nexus 4 users will want to boot into safe mode to try and isolate the problem even further.

Booting the Nexus 4 into safe mode will disable third-party applications. This will allow users to isolate problem apps and figure out which might be causing problem. It’s a tedious process but it’s worth a shot if battery drain continues. Here’s how to boot the Nexus 4 into safe mode, courtesy of Google:

  1. Make sure your device’s screen is on, then press & hold the Power button.
  2. In the box that opens, touch & hold Power off.
  3. You’ll see a “Reboot to safe mode” box. Touch OK.
  4. Your device will start up in safe mode. Try using your device normally. Remember, you won’t be able to use any installed apps.

If apps aren’t the problem, try rebooting the Nexus 4. It’s an extremely quick process but this could return things to normal. The reboot will clear the cache and kill off services that might be eating away at the device’s battery life. It’s a simple fix that’s worked for us in the past.

We also recommend disabling NFC and Bluetooth when not in use and getting rid of live wallpapers. Live wallpapers have the potential to chew through battery in the background.

How to Fix Nexus 4 Charging Problems

Charging problems have plagued Nexus users for years so it’s no surprising to see complaints about slow charging and various other issues afflicting the Nexus 4. It’s very common.


If the Nexus 4 starts exhibiting charging problems, there are a few steps to take. One method that’s fixed slow charging issues on our Nexus devices involves a few easy steps. First, charge the Nexus 4 up to 100% charge. Once it’s there, let the charge start to fall. Before it gets down to 0%, right around the 5% mark, charge it up to 100% again. Repeat this three to four times. This helped our Nexus 4 battery after the move to Android 5.0.

Nexus 4 Android L System Image MIA

If that doesn’t work, here are a few more things to try. First, make sure that the Nexus 4 is being charged with the cable that it came with. If it is, and it still doesn’t work, try using a charger with the same voltage rating as the Nexus 4’s charger.

If that still doesn’t work, try ditching the wall charger for a USB cable. Plug the Nexus 4 into a computer and charge it that way to see if it helps. Charging from a wall is faster but charging through a CPU could help.


How to Fix Nexus 4 Wi-Fi Issues

Wi-Fi issues are another extremely common problem on Android devices. Nexus users have complained about Wi-Fi problems since the Nexus programs inception and they continue to plague Nexus 4 users after the Android 5.0.1 Lollipop update. Fortunately, there are a few fixes that could work for Nexus 4 users experiencing broken connectivity.

Try rebooting the Nexus 4. That’s been known to have a positive effect on Wi-Fi problems. If that doesn’t work, try rebooting the local router if that hasn’t been done in a long time. We recommend unplugging the router for a good 30 seconds and then plugging it back in. Users can do the same for the modem as well. It’s also worth it to update the router’s firmware. Instructions for that will vary based on make and model. If those simple fixes do not work, it’s time to head into the Nexus 4’s settings.

Developers are working on a Nexus 4 Android L port.

Once inside the device’s settings, force the Nexus 4 to forget the Wi-Fi network that’s causing the problems. Head to the desired connection in Settings and select the Forget Network option. Users will then need to reconnect to the Wi-Fi network so make sure that the password is readily available before forgetting the network.

If that doesn’t work, try changing the frequency on the Nexus 4. To do that, click the vertical dots in the top right corner to bring up the Advanced menu. Go to Wi-Fi frequency band and try 2.4GHz or 5GHz. It should be set to Automatic by default.

If none of those fixes work, we recommend updating applications on the Nexus 4. Nexus 4 users can also try booting into safe mode to see if apps are really the issue. If apps aren’t causing the problem then it’s probably worth trying another router to see if it’s a hardware problem. Older routers misbehave sometimes misbehave.

How to Fix Nexus 4 Cellular Data Issues

The Nexus 4 didn’t come with LTE but it did come with cellular data for use when Wi-Fi isn’t available. Nexus 4 users have complained about cellular data issues for a number of years now and while we haven’t seen many pitchforks go up after Android 5.0 Lollipop, there’s always a chance that users will stumble upon cellular data issues in the future.

Nexus 4 users that run into cellular data problems should first try flipping cellular data off. To do that go to Settings -> More -> Cellular networks. Turn it back on after 30 seconds or so and see if the connection is back. If it’s not, try rebooting the device. This has worked for us in the past when cellular data abruptly stops working.

Nexus 4 vs Nexus 5 design.

Users might also want to try heading into Access Point Name (APN) settings and updating them. Lollipop apparently did not properly update them for some users. To access the Nexus 4’s APN settings, Settings -> More -> Cellular networks -> Access Point Names. Those who are unsure about APN settings should contact the device’s carrier before changing the settings.

We’ve also had success popping the Nexus 4 into Airplane Mode. Switch on Airplane Mode and then switch it off. This has, in the past, restored cellular data on Nexus smartphones and tablets.

How to Fix Nexus 4 Bluetooth Problems

Nexus 4 Bluetooth issues continue to plague device owners after the Android 5.0 Lollipop update. That comes as no surprise to us because Bluetooth has always been problematic on Nexus devices.

Those dealing with Nexus 4 Bluetooth issues should first try switching Bluetooth off and on. This is a simple fix but it’s worked for some Nexus users in the past. If that doesn’t work, we recommend clearing the cache on Bluetooth Share. To do this, head into Settings -> Apps -> Scroll over to All -> Select Bluetooth Share -> Clear Cache. After doing this, power down the Nexus 4 and boot it back up to see if the problem is resolved. Users can also try to Clear Data from the same screen to see if that works.


Nexus 4 users trying to connect to Bluetooth in a car will want to consult the car’s manual. There should be a way to reset Bluetooth though the process is going to be different for each make and model. Once the connection’s been reset and the connection’s been forgotten on the Nexus 4, try reconnecting to see if it finally works.

We also recommend booting into Safe Mode (the instructions can be found above) which will disable third-party applications. This will allow users to check and see if apps are causing the problem. Occasionally, they’re the source of the issues.

How to Fix Nexus 4 Performance Problems

Nexus 4 performance problems, which include things like lag and random freezing, are a big issue for some users after the Android 5.0 Lollipop release. We’ve seen a number of complaints about performance on the two year old phone. Older devices often have trouble running new software and Android 5.0 appears to be causing problems.

One fix that’s worked for us involves clearing the cache partition on the device. This is an in depth process that requires a bit of time and effort but it has worked wonders for Nexus performance problems in the past. Here’s how to do it on the Nexus 4:

  • Press and hold Power and Volume Down buttons simultaneously until you see something other than Google on the screen.
  • You should see a large arrow at the top of the screen.
  • Tap Volume Down repeatedly until you see Recovery in the arrow.  Then tap the Power button
  • You should see an android on his back, chest open with a red triangle and exclamation mark.
  • While holding Power button tap Volume Up once then release Power.
  • You should now see a list of items at top of screen.
  • Tap Volume Down until the item to erase or wipe the cache partition is highlighted.  Then tap Power button to initiate.
  • Status messages will appear at the bottom of the screen.  Be patient – it can take 10-15 minutes to complete.  When done restart the Nexus.

We also recommend halting the use of live wallpapers as they can negatively impact performance. Nexus 4 users can also try toggling NFC off if it’s not in use. We also suggest toggling off Daydream, Android’s screen saver, if it’s not necessary.

How to Fix Nexus 4 App Issues

Nexus 4 users experiencing issues with applications can try a few things to jumpstart performance. First, try updating the app. There’s a good chance that the developer’s rolled out a bug fix so users be wise to give that a shot. We also recommend reinstalling the application. We’ve seen success with this method several times in the past.

If the problems continue, reach out to the developer and alert them to the problem. This will help them identify the problem and potentially fix it in a later update.

How to Fix Nexus 4 Random Reboots

Android 5.0 Lollipop appears to be causing random crashes for Nexus 4 users. Google’s forums are filled with complaints about random reboots that seem to come out of nowhere.

There are a few things Nexus 4 users can try in order to fix these reboots. The first is to simply soft reset the device. This has cleared up reboot issues for us in the past and it’s a simple fix that could work here.

Nexus 4 portable charger

We also recommend updating applications to the latest build. Old apps will often cause problems. We also recommend booting into Safe Mode to disable third-party apps. If apps are the culprit, Nexus 4 users won’t see the random reboots when in Safe Mode.

If none of those work, and the Nexus 4 is still on Android 4.4 KitKat, it might be time to install the Android 5.0 Lollipop update. New updates will often kill off random reboot issues though there’s always the potential for them to return down the road.

How to Fix Nexus 4 Problems If Nothing Else Works

If none of these fixes work, and they might not, it’s probably worth factory resetting the Nexus 4. This will restore the device to the way it was when it first arrived. Nexus 4 users will want to backup important files because this process will erase everything. Here’s how to factory reset the Nexus 7.

If that doesn’t work, we suggest looking at a few different resources. First, we recommend heading to Google’s Nexus Help Forum. There are a ton of knowledgeable people on Google’s forums that will gladly help if the Nexus 4 starts being problematic. Sometimes, unorthodox fixes will work where common fixes fail. We also recommend taking a look at Android Central’s forums, one of our favorite Android-centric forums.

Those who are still unable to find a fix should get in touch with their service provider or with Google itself. Often times, the company will provide possible fixes when contacted directly. Depending on the severity of the problem, Nexus 4 users might also be able to get the company to send out a new device. Warranties and customer service agents are going to be tricky to navigate but it’s worth a shot if nothing else works.