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October 23, 2018

Common Google Pixel 3 problems and how to fix them

by John_A

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are arguably among the five best Android phones to date. They feature top-tier specs, stock Android software — and, of course, all the artificial intelligence Google can pack into them.

Of course, the devices aren’t perfect. Since the launch of the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, a few issues related to the phones have popped up — and they are issues that you might be experiencing too.

In case you have run into problems related to the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, we’ve put together this guide. Here’s everything you need to know about the Pixel 3 line’s problems, and how to fix them.

Problem: Photos aren’t saving

A number of users have reported that after taking a photo with the camera app, those photos aren’t saving — essentially meaning that the photo could be gone forever. That’s a pretty major problem, and one that seems to be pretty widespread too — a number of users on Reddit have reported running into it. The issue, in particular, seems to come up when you take a photo with the Google Camera app, then switch to another app or lock the phone immediately after taking the photo. In some situations, the photo will eventually appear again in the gallery, but that doesn’t seem to happen all the time.

The issue seems to be related to how the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL handle memory — which thankfully means that it could be fixed with a software update.

Potential solution:

  • For now, the only way to prevent losing a photo is to keep the camera app open for a few seconds after taking the photo until it saves.
  • It’s highly likely that Google is working on a software fix for the issue, and will release an Android update fixing the problem in the very near future. To check for an update, head to Settings > System > System Update, and make sure you have the latest version of Android.

Bug: Music app closes when you open the camera app

Other users have reported that opening the camera app while listening to music seems to cause the music app to close in the background — stopping the playback of the music. This is another bug that seems to be related to memory management on the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. We were able to replicate the problem, both with Spotify and with Google’s own YouTube Music.

Because the issue seems to be related to memory handling, it’s very likely we’ll see a software update fixing the issue in the near future. It’s possible the issue is actually the same problem causing photos not to save — and that it all comes down to issues with the Pixel 3 not handling its 4GB of memory well enough.

Potential solution:

  • Unfortunately, the only real solution right now is to wait for a software update. To check for an update, head to Settings > System > System Update, and make sure you have the latest version of Android.

Issue: Phone is locked to Verizon

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are Verizon-exclusive phones, basically meaning that Verizon is the only carrier in the U.S. with the right to sell the phones. Some users, however, have reported that the Pixel 3 from Best Buy was also locked to the Verizon network, meaning users couldn’t buy the phone and activate it on another network. Once the phone was activated on Verizon, it was then unlocked — meaning you could only then use it on another network.

Thankfully, it seems as though Verizon has, at least temporarily, unlocked the Pixel 3 completely. The unlocking was sent to Pixel 3 phones through a software update — so you should be able to set up your phone without a SIM card, update it, then activate it on whatever network you choose.

Potential solution:

  • Set up your phone and then check for a software update. To check for an update, head to Settings > System > System Update, and make sure you have the latest version of Android. You should then be able to activate it on the network of your choice. Keep in mind, this issue mostly affects Best Buy customers — if you purchased your phone from Verizon, expect it to be locked again to Verizon’s network.
  • If you haven’t yet bought the phone, buy it through the Google Store, which sells the phone completely unlocked.

We’ll update this article when we hear more about issues related to the Google Pixel 3 and how to fix them.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Pixel 3 XL vs. Pixel 2 XL vs. Pixel XL: Which XL is best for you?
  • Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL: Everything you need to know
  • Here’s how to buy the new Google Pixel 3 and Google Pixel 3 XL
  • Key settings you need to change on your brand-new Google Pixel 3 or 3 XL phone
  • The Google Pixel Stand turns your Android phone into an Assistant-powered hub



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