Nexus 5 Bug Causes Texts and Calls to Randomly Not Come Through

February 22, 2014 - Written By Patrick Northcraft

Why did we develop cell phones in the first place?  Simply put, we did it to ease communication.  No longer did you have to be tethered to a desk in order to speak with someone who may be hundreds or thousands of miles away.  As technology developed, we soon started relying on them for simple text communication, which is less intrusive in our daily lives than traditional calls.  We expect phones to be able to do these things well, and we have began to take them for granted.  Now it would seem that the LG Nexus 5 is having some issues with this job, and this is both annoying and inconvenient for the many Nexus 5 owners out there.

The bug itself is pretty straight-forward.  At what would appear to be random times, the Nexus 5 will just stop receiving any kind of incoming calls or texts.  There are absolutely no signals that show that anything is wrong.  All the service and data bars will still read as if everything was functional, but the messages just will not come through.  You might ask:  if that is the case, then how did anyone find out about this bug?  Well, Google Voice users can check from their computers to see if there are any voicemails for them, and in these circumstances the users were alerted to voicemails being there without ever receiving any notification on the phone.  Based on what knowledge is available, this is a problem that can affect all Nexus 5 handsets, regardless of carrier.  However, AT&T does seem to have less complaints around the internet.

Unfortunately, no one has yet be able to determine a standard set of circumstances that need to be in effect for the bug to show itself.  The most commonly stated conditions are that LTE was enables, WiFi was enabled and connected, or that the Nexus 5 had been asleep for a few minutes.  In some cases, just one of each event occurred, and in others, two or three happened.  So far, a singular cause has not been identified, but some theories predict that there are bugs in the drivers of the phone, or that there is interference between the signals and the Wi-Fi radios in the handsets.

Now the most common ways that people have found to work around this bug are pretty common sense-based looking at the problems.  If you are suffering from this issue, one solution could be to disable your LTE by going to Settings > (Wireless & Networks) More > Mobile Networks > Preferred network type > 3G.  This can be a real drag if you are paying for unlimited  (or just a high-capacity) of high-speed data, but hopefully it will be fixed soon.  Another reported solution is to set the phone to turn off W-Fi when in sleep mode, which you do through Settings > Wi-Fi > (menu) > Advanced > Keep Wi-Fi on during sleep > Never.  This will cause your phone to take a few seconds to reconnect to your access point after turning it back on, but it might be worth it if you get your connectivity notifications back.  There is word that we may be seeing an OTA fix rolled out from Google and LG, but there is no announced roll out date or anything of the like.

For now, we can only hope that these solutions may help anyone who is facing this bug.  As a Nexus 5 owner, I hope I do not have to deal with it, and I hope no one else has to as well.  Calls and texts are the most primary uses of smartphones, so having that compromised compromises that value of the phone itself, effectively turning it into a tiny tablet.  Are you facing any of these issues?  Let us know down below!