Facebook is one of those services that is hard to live without. You probably use the app to connect to friends, family, coworkers, and the occasional frenemy, so it’s hard to bounce back when you find Facebook not working correctly anymore. Fortunately, there are a few easy steps you can take to resolve and/or work around some of the more common Facebook issues you’re likely to encounter. We’ve also included a couple of bonus features at the end as well!
Is Facebook not working for you? If so, there’s an immediate workaround available — Facebook’s mobile site. This is a lightweight, mobile browser-optimized app that can give you almost everything the Facebook app can give you — including notifications. Indeed, some folks rely entirely on the Facebook mobile app, and have uninstalled the Facebook app altogether. This can help conserve battery life on your phone as well. In fact, we have a whole list of Facebook alternative apps.
Facebook not working? Make it work
But, let’s assume that you actually want the app to work as advertised. There are a few things you can do to get things back up and running in that event.
First, make sure the app is fully updated in the Google Play store. Facebook frequently pushes out updates to its app for security updates and bug fixes. As a result, older versions of the app can cease to function. First, open Android’s settings and check your available storage. If your device has less than 100 MB of storage available, you may need to clear some space to allow the app to update.
You can also cancel and restart the download of the update. If that doesn’t help, log out of the Facebook app and then try the download once more. If it’s not working, Google Play has a list of steps you can follow to troubleshoot the download of an app.
If that fails, you can try uninstalling the Facebook app, restarting your device, and reinstalling the app from the Play store. Alternatively, you can download the latest Facebook APK file from Facebook directly here:
Turn on automatic updates
To make sure you’re always using the latest version of the Facebook app, turn on automatic updates for the app. To do so, open the Google Play Store app and search for Facebook. Once you select it, tap the ellipsis in the upper right corner of the app page and place a check mark in the auto-update box.
Notifications aren’t working
Notifications are what let you know what’s happening on Facebook. When they stop working, it can be a headache. First, make sure you have notifications enabled on a system level. Those are found in your device’s settings. Typically you’ll go to Applications — Application Manager — Facebook — Notifications. Make sure Facebook is allowed to post notifications. If it is, check notification settings in the app to make sure they’re set properly. Tap the hamburger menu (three horizontal lines) — Notifications Settings. From here you can adjust what notifications you get and how you are notified.
Bonus #1 — Privacy
Not long ago, Facebook made headlines because of the permissions it was asking for. As a result, Facebook detailed exactly what permissions it was asking for and why.
The takeaway here is that, basically, app developers need to access many facets of a phone’s ecosystem in order to function normally. It is certainly wise to know why those permissions are being sought. But there are three things to keep in mind:
1. Just because an app needs to access your camera, does not mean that the company will be watching you taking a shower.
2. If a company is reputable, it’s probably Okay. Having said that…
3. It is your right and privilege to ask those privacy questions.
Bonus #2 — Beta Testing
Want to try the latest and greatest that Facebook has to offer? Facebook has a public beta system you can sign up for. It’s important to note that like any beta program, there may be issues with the app, and Facebook warns it’ll probably update the app several times per week. If all that sounds OK, you can go to this link and sign into the Google Play store (if necessary). Once there, tap “Become a Beta Tester.” Note, once you are signed into Google Play, clicking the “Become a Beta Tester” button actually puts you into the program — there’s no confirmation dialogue or anything.
If you want to leave the beta tester program, that link is here. It’s the same deal — clicking on the link removes you from the program. There’s no confirmation dialog.
So is Facebook not working for you? Now you know how to resolve the most common Facebook issues and get your app back up and running. Think we missed anything? Let us know in the comments. We will be updating this article frequently, so if there’s anything else you’d like to see, let us know!