The Google Play Store is one of those apps we take for granted, mostly because it simply works as a mediator between the user and their precious apps. Hell freezes and the sky falls once it happens to stop working, though. How will you download that new app you have been so desperately waiting for? There’s no definite manual for fixing the Google Play Store, but we have put together a set of tips and tricks that will most likely help.
Make sure it is a user-end problem
Before you go through a bunch of steps attempting to fix a problem, make sure the problem isn’t with Google itself. The best way to do this is to head somewhere like the Down Detector to see if others are reporting issues. If enough people are claiming similar problems, it could be a temporary server issue that will fix itself with just a little patience.
The problem could be Google!
Force close the Google Play Store
Sometimes a simple force close is all you need! You can do this by simply swiping away the Google Play Store on your multitasking app switcher. Or you could go to Settings > Apps and notifications, then tap on See all apps and then access the Google Play Store and hit “Force Stop.” The steps might be a little different depending on what device you have — these are on the OnePlus 7T Pro running Android 11.
Turn on airplane mode
Not sure how much this one works, but I have heard plenty of people say that switching Airplane Mode on and then off will help the Google Play Store get back on track. Hey, it’s not a complicated process, and it’s safe. Why not try, right?
Toggle Wi-Fi off and on
Just like with Airplane Mode, Wi-Fi could be the issue. Not to mention, your network may very well be having simple connection issues! Toggle Wi-Fi on and off, and play around with the Google Play Store for a few. It just might help.
Restart your router
I have fixed a Wi-Fi issue or two by simply restarting my router. It may not always make sense, but give it a try, and you might affect the Wi-Fi magic enough to get things working again.
Restart your phone!
Like in the good ol' times, modern electronics sometimes just need a smack to work properly.
OK, maybe not an actual smack, but you need to put everything back in place, and sometimes a simple reboot will do. This will take a minute or two and very often fixes problems.
Wipe the Google Play Store cache
Cache memory is an awesome tool. By storing data locally, the phone can reduce data usage and speed up loading times. This data would otherwise need to be downloaded every time you access a page, which is unnecessary if there are no changes! The bad part is that sometimes older data can pile up, and it can also misbehave. This is why it’s good to clear cache from time to time.
To wipe the Google Play Store cache memory, head over to Settings > Apps and notifications and tap on See all apps. Scroll down to the Google Play Store. Tap on “Storage,” and you will see the option to “Clear Cache.”
Delete Google Play Store data
Is clearing the cache not enough? It’s time to bring out bigger guns and really clean things up. Access your Settings and go into the App Manager like you did to clear the cache to delete related data. Instead of hitting “Clear Cache,” though, select “Clear Data.” Just keep in mind this will clear the application. You will have to sign in and pick up all the data again next time you access the Google Play Store.
Take a look at your disabled apps
Keep in mind that some apps need each other to work properly. Especially when dealing with system apps like the Google Play Store. Have you disabled any apps recently? That could be the cause of your Play Store woes.
Just head over to Settings > Apps and notifications and scroll all the way down. This is where disabled apps go when they are put down. If you see any disabled services, enable them and see if that helps.
Check your date and time settings
It may seem like a silly suggestion, but often this can be the cause of many Google Play Store issues. This could be due to Google’s servers having trouble syncing with your date and time settings. Go back and put them on automatic, if they aren’t. If that isn’t helping, try to set your time and date as exactly as you can. Just play around with the time and date settings a bit.
Remove VPN settings
Plenty of VPN users say they have encountered issues all over the board. Have you tried deactivating these (if you are using them)? You can find VPN settings under “More” in the WiFi & Networks section. If you’re using a third-party VPN app instead, disconnect from the server.
Just uninstall it!
If all fails, your best bet would probably be to uninstall the Google Play Store. The only trick is that this is a system app, and you really can’t just get rid of it. What you can do is uninstall the updates, taking the application to an older version. You can update it again afterward, so don’t worry — this is a safe procedure.
Just go to Settings > Apps and notifications, tap on “See all apps,” and scroll down to find the Google Play Store. Tap on the three vertical dot icon at the top right corner and select “Uninstall updates.”
Could the issue be Google Play Services?
We could say Google’s apps are the motor that drives Android devices. Yes, we are talking about that weird app that needs updating now and then when trying to get another application. And many have no idea what it is, but it happens to be your phone’s backbone. Google’s applications offer some of the most exciting features available, and it’s all powered by Google Play Services.
Try clearing both the cache and data by following the same steps from above. The only difference is that instead of accessing the Google Play Store, you head over to Google Play Services on the App Manager. Like any other app, Google Play Services can fail at times, so it’s worth playing around with it if you have any Google-related issues.
Remove and re-enter Google account
I don’t have much faith in this one, but some suggest you reset your Google account to fix certain issues. I suppose it’s worth a try before jumping on the last (and most extreme) tip. Just go to Settings > Accounts and select your Google account. Tap on the three-dot menu button and hit “Remove.” Then add your account again and try to access the Google Play Store.
Are you getting an error code?
Working with error codes may be easier, as the system is pretty much telling you what’s going on. A bit of research, and you should know what the problem is and how to fix it. Let’s go over some of the most popular Google Play Store error codes you may encounter.
Google Play Store Error 944
Those who get a 944 error code need not panic. All this code is telling you is that Google’s servers are offline or suffering connectivity issues. The obvious solution is to wait until Google fixes its problems.
Google Play Store Error 919
You have run out of space! Trying to download that app over and over won’t help, as this error code is pretty much telling you the application no longer fits in your storage. Delete some clutter and uninstall unimportant applications.
Google Play Store Error 481
This code means that there’s some major error with your account. Let’s hope none of you ever have to see these error codes, as it likely means the end of your Google account. The only fix is to remove your old account and then sign up for a new one. You can remove your account under General Settings > Accounts > Google.
Google Play Store Error 505
This error is usually caused by similar apps looking for the same permission, which causes a conflict. Google may have fixed this with more recent updates, as this error is more common in devices with Android 4 KitKat and older iterations.
Your first try at fixing this should be to clear the Google Play Store and Google Play Services cache. This is done from the “Apps” section within your Settings app. Furthermore, you can uninstall and re-install updates to the Google Play Store. Also, make sure you are running the latest software available for your Android device.
Google Play Store Error 927
This Google Play Store error appears when trying to download or update an app, but this particular code occurs only when the Play Store is caught out in the middle of an update of its own.
The best fix is to wait for the Play Store to finish updating and installing and then try again. Alternatively, you can clear app data for the Play Store and Google Services under Settings > Apps > All.
Factory data reset
See also: How to factory reset Android devices
We hope one of these methods got your Google Play Store back up and running. If nothing helped, the problem has to run deeper than usual, and you should probably consult technical support.