Google Play Services is an Android service that runs in the background and facilitates communication between the operating system, the Play Store, and all the different apps. It also provides app developers access to various APIs they need to implement features on their apps.

unfortunately google play services has stopped
IMAGE: Pathum Danthanarayana (Unsplash)

Although the Google Play Services gets updated automatically and doesn’t cause any trouble, there are times when you may run into the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error on your Android device.

How to Fix Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped Error on Android

Fortunately, it’s quite easy to fix the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error on Android. Here are all the possible fixes you can try to fix this dreaded error. We’ve put these fixes in an ordered manner, making it easier to troubleshoot the possible cause. So please ensure you follow the fixes one by one.

1. Restart Your Phone

One of the easiest ways to fix most Android problems is to restart your device. The idea behind it is pretty simple. If an app or a background service on your phone is causing Google Play Services to crash, restarting the phone would clear it off the RAM and put the device in a new state.

Depending on the Android phone you own, you can reboot it either by turning it off and on or by using the restart option.

2. Make Sure the Date and Time Are Correct

If you’re using an Android device without a SIM card or have inserted a new one, it may not show you the correct date and time. Since Google Play Services (or any other services, for the matter) needs to be synced correctly with the date and time, it may cause you to get the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error on your device.

Follow these steps to set the correct date and time on Android:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Go to System and click on Date & time.
    setting correct date and time
  3. Toggle on the Set time automatically option. If this doesn’t fix the date and time, go to the Date and Time options individually and set them yourself.
    toggling the set time automatically option

3. Switch to Mobile Data (Or Vice-Versa)

Many a time, you may encounter the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” pop-up due to a poor or unstable internet connection or because your ISP is causing it to establish a proper connection with the servers.

A quick fix to this problem is to switch your internet connection. If you’re on Wi-Fi, switch to mobile data, or if you’re facing problems on mobile data, switch to Wi-Fi and then try using the Play Store again.

4. Clear Cache and Data

Although a simple restart should fix the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error in most cases, if it doesn’t, another way to fix this problem is to clear the cache and data for Google Play Store and Play Services.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Apps and tap the See all X apps option, where X is the number of apps on your device.
    selecting apps in settings
  3. Scroll down the list to find Google Play Services, tap Storage & cache, and hit the Clear cache button.
    clear play services cache and data
  4. Similarly, select Google Play Store and repeat the same steps. Additionally, click the Clear storage button to remove the entire app data.
    clear play store cache and data

5. Disable Google Play Services

When the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error keeps popping up on your Android phone and none of the fixes listed till now work, you can try disabling Play Services on your device to see if it fixes the problem.

Here’s how to disable the Play Services:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Scroll down to Apps and tap on See all apps.
    settings app
  3. Select Google Play Services from the list and click on Disable. When prompted to confirm the action, hit Disable app.
    disabling google play services
  4. Wait for some time, and then follow the same steps and hit Enable to enable the Play Services.

6. Uninstall the Recent Google Play Services Update

Google Play Services automatically updates itself whenever there’s a new update. While this comes in handy as you don’t have to go about updating it manually, sometimes a recent update can cause it to throw the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error on your smartphone.

But thankfully, you can uninstall recent updates for system services on Android to restore them back to the previous version. We’ll be doing the same with Google Play Service. Here’s how:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Go to Apps and select the See all apps option.
    settings app
  3. Scroll down and select Google Play Services.
    selecting play services from the app list
  4. Tap on the three-dot menu in the top-right corner and select Uninstall updates.
    uninstalling recent play services update
  5. When prompted to confirm the action, hit OK.

7. Update Google Play Services

Just like how a new update can cause Play Services to act up and crash, running a relatively older version of the same can also sometimes cause your device to spit the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error.

When this happens, you can check if there’s a new update for the Google Play Services and install it. Follow these steps to do this:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Apps and select See all apps.
  3. Find Google Play Services on the list.
    selecting google play services from app list
  4. Scroll down and tap on App details under Store. This will take you to the Play Store.
    updating google play services
  5. If there’s an update available, you’ll see the Update option for the Play Services listing. Click on it to update the Google Play Services on your device.

8. Reset App Preferences

A lot of the time, changing certain app settings or permissions while trying to get something to work can impact the proper functioning of the Play Services on Android. To ensure this isn’t causing Play Services to crash on your phone, here’s how you can reset app preferences to restore the defaults:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Go to Apps > See all apps.
    settings app
  3. Tap on the three-dot icon in the top-right corner and click Reset app preferences. When it prompts you to confirm the action, tap the Reset apps button.
    resetting app preferences

9. Log Back into Your Google Account Again

Although rare, the Play Services and Play Store can sometimes face issues working properly when there’s a problem with your Google account: perhaps because you changed its password or something else. So if you see the same error message even after trying out different solutions, logging out of your Google account and logging back in should most likely resolve this issue.

Here are the steps to do this:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Go to Passwords & accounts and tap on your Google account under Accounts for Owner.
    selecting google account in settings
  3. Tap the Remove account button, and hit Remove account in the confirmation prompt to remove your Google account.
    sign in to google account
  4. Now, on the Passwords & accounts page, click on Add account, select Google, and enter your account credentials to log back in again.

10. Factory Reset Your Android Device

Lastly, if none of the above solutions fix the Play Services on your device and you keep seeing the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error, factory resetting the device is your only option. When you factory reset a device, it restores your device to its default state and deletes all of your data on the device.

Follow the steps below to restore your smartphone. But before you do that, make sure to backup all your important data and apps on the device first.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Go to System and tap on Reset options.
    reset options in settings
  3. Click Erase all data (factory reset), and hit the Erase all data button on the following screen to confirm.
    factory reset device

After the device is restored, follow the on-screen prompts to set up the device.

Related: How to View Purchase History on the Google Play Store

Getting Google Play Services Working Again

Seeing the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” error pop-up on your Android smartphone is very frustrating. It makes the device impossible to use and prevents you from downloading or updating apps from the Play Store.

We have covered all possible solutions to this error, which we believe can help you fix the problem on your device, so you can restore Play Services’ functionality and resume normal operation.

FAQs About the “Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped” Error

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We've listed ten solutions to fix the "Unfortunately Google Play Services Has Stopped" error on Android phones in this guide above. Refer to the instructions under each solution to find out how to perform them.

Google Play Services comes pre-installed on Android smartphones. As such, you can only disable the Play Services, uninstall its most recent update, or update it to a newer version on a non-rooted phone. Follow the steps in the solutions 5, 6, and 7 above to do any of these operations on your device.

There can be multiple reasons for the "Unfortunately Google Play Services has stopped" error on Android phones. The most obvious ones include the outdated version of Google Play Services, poor Internet connection, and incorrect time and date.

This is a common error with Google News app on Android. The best way to fix "Unfortunately Google News stopped" error is to clear the app's cache and data. To do that, open Settings. Head to Apps. Choose Installed Applications. Find Google News. Navigate to the Storage tab. Tap on Clear App cache and the Clear App data.

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