Troubleshooting Smartphone Display Flickering: Causes and Fixes

Fix smartphone screen flickering issue
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Are you experiencing an annoying flickering screen on your smartphone? Screen flickering can be a frustrating issue that hampers your phone’s usability and visual experience. However, there are several common causes behind this problem, ranging from software glitches to hardware failures. In this article, we will explore the causes of smartphone display flickering and provide you with effective troubleshooting steps to resolve the issue.

Causes of Smartphone Display Flickering

1. Loose Internal Connections: One potential cause of display flickering is loose internal connections within your smartphone. Dropping your phone or subjecting it to physical pressure can lead to poor connections, resulting in an unstable display.

2. Buggy Software: Software glitches, conflicts, or compatibility issues with certain apps can cause the screen to flicker. Outdated software versions or recent app installations may contribute to this problem.

3. Unprocessed Data or Cache: Accumulated cache or unprocessed data can interfere with your phone’s functions, including the display. These issues can arise due to corrupted files or incomplete tasks.

4. Third-Party Apps: Certain third-party apps might be poorly optimized or have compatibility issues with your device, leading to screen flickering. These apps could be running in the background, affecting the display performance.

5. Auto-Brightness Feature: The auto-brightness or adaptive brightness feature, which adjusts the screen illumination based on ambient light conditions, can sometimes malfunction or cause unexpected display flickers.

6. Hardware Overlays: Damaged or aging phones may struggle with screen compositing, resulting in minor delays between tasks and causing the screen to flicker. Disabling hardware overlays can help alleviate this issue.

7. Messy Software Build: In some cases, a problematic software build can be the root cause of display flickering. Software updates are typically released to address such issues.

8. Hardware Failure: Unfortunately, hardware failure can also cause display flickering. This may be due to physical damage, wear and tear, or malfunctioning components.

Troubleshooting Steps For Screen Problems

Whether you own an iPhone or an Android device, a flickering display can be a frustrating experience. Fortunately, there are several troubleshooting steps you can take to address this issue. We will explore practical fixes for smartphone screen flickering, helping you restore a stable and enjoyable visual experience.

Fixes for Smartphone Screen Flickering

1. Restart Your Phone

When encountering a flickering screen, the first step is to restart your device. This simple action can resolve temporary issues caused by background services or crashed components. By restarting your phone, you can eliminate minor software glitches that may be affecting the display. If the flickering persists after the restart, proceed to the next step.

2. Perform a Hard Reset

If a simple restart doesn’t fix the screen flickering, consider performing a hard reset or factory reset. This process restores your phone to its default settings, clearing the cache and eliminating any unprocessed data that could be causing the issue. Remember to back up your important data before proceeding with a factory reset to avoid losing any valuable information.

3. Enter Safe Mode (Android Only)

For Android users, booting your device into Safe Mode can help identify if the problem is caused by a third-party app. Safe Mode allows you to use your phone without running any third-party apps or services, making it easier to pinpoint the root cause of the flickering screen. If the screen functions normally in Safe Mode, it indicates that a particular app is causing the issue. Follow the steps to enter into safe mode:

To enable Safe Mode on your Android device, follow these steps:

1. Press and hold the power key until the power menu appears.
2. Long-press the “Power Off” option on the screen until you see the Safe Mode prompt.
3. Tap the Safe Mode icon. Your phone will restart in Safe Mode, and the screen flickering should no longer occur.
4. To exit Safe Mode, simply restart your device as you normally would.
5. Alternatively, you can also exit Safe Mode by accessing the notification panel. Swipe down from the top of the screen to open the panel, then tap on the “Safe mode is on” notification. From there, select “Turn off” to disable Safe Mode.

By following these steps, you can effectively enable and disable Safe Mode on your Android device to troubleshoot and resolve screen flickering issues.

4. Disable Auto-Brightness

The auto-brightness or adaptive brightness feature adjusts the screen illumination based on ambient light conditions. However, this feature can sometimes lead to unexpected display flickering due to software updates or hardware defects. Disabling the auto-brightness option in your device settings can help mitigate this problem. Alternatively, you can try resetting the adaptive brightness settings to ensure smooth adjustment under different lighting conditions.

For Android: Settings > Display > Adaptive brightness
For iPhone: Settings > Accessbility > Display & Text Size > Auto brightness 

5. Disable Hardware Overlays

A damaged or aging phone may experience screen compositing issues, resulting in flickering during transitions between tasks. Disabling hardware overlays can help alleviate this problem. To do so, enable Developer options in your Android settings and toggle off the “Disable HW overlays” feature. Keep in mind that this may slightly increase power consumption as it forces the use of GPU rendering.

6. Check for Software Updates

A messy software build can contribute to display flickering. Regularly check for software updates and install them if available. Software updates often include bug fixes and improvements that can address display-related issues. Check your device’s system update section in the settings menu to see if there are any available updates.

7. Seek Professional Assistance

If none of the aforementioned steps resolve the screen flickering problem, and you suspect a hardware failure, it is advisable to contact your device manufacturer’s customer support or visit a certified service center. Professional technicians can diagnose and repair any hardware-related issues accurately, ensuring your phone’s display functions properly.


Experiencing a flickering screen on your smartphone can be disruptive, but there are effective troubleshooting steps you can take to address the issue. By restarting your phone, performing a hard reset, entering Safe Mode (Android), disabling auto-brightness, and checking for software updates, you can often resolve common causes of screen flickering. If all else fails, reaching out to professional technicians for assistance is recommended. Enjoy a smooth and flicker-free visual experience on your iPhone or Android device!

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