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Motorola Moto Z4 common issues and how to solve them

moto z4 featured

Motorola upped their game when it comes to mid-range devices in addition to their Z class. The Moto Z4 comes with a 6.4-inch OLED screen, 4 GB of RAM, and interesting support for Moto Mods packed in a close-to-stock Android package. This is, by all means, a good but not flawless device. Some Moto Z4 users reported issues online.

These are reported issues mostly minor bugs caused by the lack of optimization. To help our readers out, we made sure to bring out the most common bugs and a few recommended solutions. Check them out below.

Note: All the issues mentioned in this article are individually reported cases, which doesn’t mean any of the problems will occur on other devices. If you’re looking to buy this phone, DO NOT consider these problems.

1. Wi-Fi connection issues

Some users report that, after they installed a regular monthly patch, Wi-Fi just stopped working. Others have issues with stability as the device connection frequently drops. These are not as prominent as some other issues but there are a few reports.

In case you run into some Wi-Fi issues on your Motorola Moto Z4, make sure to try these steps:

2. Battery draining

Battery draining is never welcome, especially when the device is idle. More than a few users run into problems with battery drainage. There are multiple things you can try to reduce battery draining on the Moto Z4.

Follow these steps to improve your battery life on the Moto Z4:

  • Disable background apps. You can use a third-party app to do so.
  • Make sure your signal is stable. We encourage all our readers to check available bands before purchasing devices. Bad network coverage leads to constant signal-hunting which leads to battery depletion.
  • Disable Auto-brightness and set preferred brightness manually.
  • Disable Location Services and Bluetooth when you are not actively using them.
  • Reset your device to factory settings.moto z4 common issues
  • Check out our tips for preserving battery life on Android.

3. Apps crashing

This is a major issue but, luckily, it’s not as prominent as some other issues on this list. If your apps are crashing, be that preinstalled system apps or third-party apps you got from the Play Store, we have a few things to recommend.

Here’s how to fix Moto Z4 issues with the app crashing:

  • Clear cache and data from the affected apps.
  • Boot into Safe mode and check whether the issue occurs again.
  • Reinstall affected apps.
  • Reset the device to factory settings.

4. NFC won’t turn off

This device, like almost all Motorola mid-rangers, supports NFC technology. As time progress, this hardware feature is one of the more important ones for a variety of reasons.

However, you probably don’t want it enabled all the time as it tends to deplete the battery a lot. This brings us to a problem one Moto Z4 user reported, stating that he’s unable to turn off NFC on their device. And then, when they finally, after a couple of reboots, managed to turn NFC off, it wouldn’t turn back on.

What we recommend is to clear the cache and data from the NFC app or, if the issue persists, reset the device to factory settings.

5. Poor cellular signal

This seems to be a major problem based on reports we run into online. Of course, multiple factors might lead to poor cellular signal. However, there’s a reoccurring problem concerning bad network reception on the Moto Z4.

Due to SoC limitations, there’s not much you can do except to try and disable additional features like Bluetooth and NFC when not using them. Also, you can try and reset APN settings while waiting for updates that will, helpfully, at least slightly improve the cellular signal. And finally, if you still can’t resolve the problem, check out our article about mobile data issues on Android.

6. Moto Z4 overheating

Overheating is one of those things that might be detrimental to your device hardware but temperatures rarely reach dangerous temperatures. Nonetheless, it’s important to keep track of it, especially if your Moto Z4 is hot on touch when idle.

For the time being, try these steps to ensure that your device doesn’t overheat too much:

  • Don’t use your handset while charging. Or, at least, don’t use it for CPU-intensive activities.
  • Remove the casing while charging.
  • Update the firmware.
  • Reset your device to factory settings.factory reset device
  • Try an alternative charger if that’s possible.

7. Speakers output with static noises

Audio output is not the strongest side of the Moto Z4. It seems that both speakers (bottom main and call speaker) are underperforming. The problem differs, but static noises seem to be quite prominent. It occurs both during calls or playing audio on your device.

There’s hardly anything we can suggest except to reset your device to factory settings. If that doesn’t help, we highly recommend asking for a replacement as the device’s hardware is flawed.

8. Xbox controller doesn’t work with Moto Z4

Users that like to use their Xbox controllers via OTG to play games on the Moto Z4 had a hard time making them work. However, it looks like Motorola resolved this issue with a certain patch.

So, in case you are unable to utilize your wired Xbox controller, just update the OS and the problem should be gone.

9. Touchscreen issues

Ghost touch issues are not frequent but they did occur for some Moto Z4 users. The issue seems to manifest in a variety of ways, especially repetitive screen freezing while tapping or scrolling, or under-the-display fingerprint sensor issues.

Try removing your SIM card and rebooting your device. Also, we highly recommend removing the screen protector from your device. Finally, if nothing helps reset your device to factory settings.

10. Moto Z4 mods don’t fit

This is regularly discussed on various public forums and many users don’t like the way Moto Mods fit on the Moto Z4, as they are sticking on both sides. This applies to Moto Style Shells, as well.

We assure you that, based on official reports, this was an intentional design to make removal and placement of the said accessories.

11. Screen stays black after calls

In case you are experiencing issues like this, there are two things we can recommend. Either there’s something wrong with your Call app, so you should clear the cache and data from it. Or, on the other hand, the issue is hardware-related and the screen protector is probably covering sensors.

So, make sure to remove the screen protector or, if you are determined to use one, check what official screen protectors are supported by the Moto Z4.

12. Hotspot not working

This is, based on our research, strictly a carrier issue and not a problem caused by Motorola. To troubleshoot it, try using an alternative SIM card and test it that way. In case the Hotspot is working as intended, make sure to contact your carrier.

If that doesn’t work, you can reset your network settings or, eventually, reset your device to factory settings.

13. No audio except on headphones

We already mentioned that this exact device, based on reports, doesn’t shine when it comes to audio output. If you are experiencing Moto Z4 issues with the sound output and there’s no sound at all no matter what you do, the only thing we can recommend is resetting your device to factory settings.

If that doesn’t help, use your warranty to ask for a replacement as the issue is hardware-related.

14. GPS not working

Another problem that’s frequently reported is related to GPS as some system (and third-party) apps are not updating location. If you are affected by this, make sure you don’t have any aluminum protective casing on. Those tend to meddle with GPS and location services.

If you don’t have a protective casing, make sure all options are enabled in Location services and reset the device to factory settings if the issue persists.

15. Google Lens or Assistant not working properly

Some Moto Z4 users have had a hard time with certain Google services, like Google Lens or Google Assistant. To resolve these, we suggest clearing the cache and data from the Lens and Google apps.

If that doesn’t help, reinstall those apps, reboot your device, and give it another try.

16. Peek display not working

The Peek display (Ambient display on supported Moto devices) is quite nifty when you have an OLED display. Sadly, some users experienced issues with the Peek display as the feature is inconsistent. It works and then, for no apparent reason, stops appearing.

The recommended solution we run into is to clear the app cache and data from the Peek display app. Just navigate to Settings > Apps > All apps and clear cache and data from the app. Reboot your phone and look for improvements.

17. Lags and stutters when gaming and in UI

Snapdragon 675 (with Adreno 612) is a quite good mid-range chipset, more than capable to run most games (at least on medium settings). However, it seems that some users are experiencing stutters when playing even undemanding games. In addition, system UI stutters are not unusual, as well.

Here are some steps to take to reduce lags on the Moto Z4:

  • Reboot the device.
  • Limit the number of apps working in the background. You can do so in the Developer options, under the Background process limit.
  • Lower the Animations in Developer options.
  • Boot into Safe Mode and, if the device performs better, uninstall recently installed apps.
  • Reset your Moto G7 to factory settings.

18. Common troubleshooting steps for Moto Z4

Enter Developer Options

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Select System.
  3. Open About phone.
  4. Tap on Build number 7 times. You should get a message informing you that you are now a developer.
  5. Get back to the main menu of Settings and, at the bottom, you should see Developer options,

Boot into Safe Mode

  1. Press and hold the Power button to bring out the Power menu.
  2. Tap and hold on to the Power off icon until you are prompted to enter Safe mode.
  3. Tap OK.
  4. To get out of Safe mode, just reboot your device again.

Reset Network settings

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Choose the Network & Internet.
  3. Tap on the 3-dot menu and choose Network settings reset.moto z4 common issues
  4. Choose to reset your Network settings.
  5. Confirm when prompted.

Reset the device to factory settings

Note: If you’re not entirely sure what you’re doing, check our article about resetting an Android phone to factory settings.

  1. First, navigate to Settings > System > Backup and back up all your settings and app data. Besides that, make sure to connect your device to a PC and back up all your media. You can also use Google Photos to back up all your photos from the device. You’ll need your Google Account password later.
  2. Once you are certain that everything can be safely deleted, in Settings > System > Advanced, choose Reset options.
  3. Select Erase all data (factory reset).factory reset device
  4. Confirm the selection. Your device will reboot and after some time, you’ll start from scratch.

And, on that note, we can wrap it up. Thank you for reading and we hope this article shed some light on the most frequent Moto Z4 issues. In case you have any more bugs or problems to add to our list, make sure to tell us in the comments section below. We look forward to helping you out as best as we can.

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in March 2020. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy.

Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Managing editor at Digital Uncoded. @lemmingspain My fascination with mobile technology, particularly Android and iOS, began years ago and continues today. I'm captivated by the constant evolution in the smartphone industry and its impact on our daily lives, always anticipating the next big innovation. That’s the main reason why I found myself writing instructive content on the subject for users who are not as familiar with all the bells and whistles.
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