Are you about to buy the latest Samsung phone or save a little money on a Google PIxel 3A? Whether you want to trade in your old Android phone for a discount on your new phone, sell it on eBay, give it away to a friend or have it recycled, you want to erase it from all your data first by resetting it to factory conditions. Fortunately that is fairly easy to do.
Please note that these instructions apply to a Pixel 3 XL with Android 9, but the process should be roughly the same for most current Android phones. Of course you first ensure that all your data is transferred to your new telephone, which is backed up or both. Once your old telephone has been reset, you cannot return.
- Go to Settings
- Select System> Advanced> Reset options
- You are offered three choices. & # 39; Reset WiFi, mobile and Bluetooth & # 39; is sometimes useful if you experience problems with the connection. & # 39; Reset app preferences & # 39; restore all your app and notification standards, among other things. None of this removes the data on your phone. That is the task of the third choice: "Delete all data (factory reset)," and that is the one that you are going to select.
- You will receive a warning screen with the reminder that your data is being deleted, along with all accounts that you are currently logged into. Select & # 39; Reset phone & # 39 ;.
- If you have a PIN code or other security setting, you will be asked to enter it
- You get a new screen asking if you are sure that this is what you want to do. Are you sure? Then press the "Delete All" button.
That is it! The process usually takes only two or three minutes. Your phone restarts and starts with the usual opening questions, such as language, account, network, and so on. As soon as you see it, you know it works.
There are a few things to watch out for. First, if you have a Samsung phone, you will be asked for your Samsung account password before you can reset (if you created one and added it to the phone).
If you have an Android phone that uses an earlier version of the operating system (for example, before version 8), resetting it after your restart may prompt you to log in. This can be difficult if you have already sent the phone to someone else. As a result, if you have an older phone, it's a good idea to disable your screen lock (by going to Security> Screen Lock and selecting "None") and deleting your Google account (found under Settings > Account> Google) before starting the reset.
There are indications that some data may remain on a telephone even after it has been reset. To be extra careful, you can encrypt the phone before you reset it:
- Go to Settings> Security and location> Advanced> Encryption & credentials and select "Encrypt phone"
- Go back to Settings and start the reset process
Of course if you want really sure, and you are not going to give the phone to someone, you could always grab a hammer.
Vox Media has affiliated partnerships. These do not affect editorial content, although Vox Media can earn commissions for products purchased through affiliate links. See for more information our ethical policy.