How to Factory Reset an Android Phone or Tablet

Introduction

A factory reset is a process that erases the data on a tablet or smartphone and restores it to mostly the same condition as when it was first purchased.
Your smartphone or tablet has a lot of personal information on it. Before you sell, give away, gift, or otherwise dispose of your phone or tablet, it's good to remove your personal data to keep it safe, and to make it ready for its next owner. As well, if there's some problems that can be solved thanks to a reset.
Before You Begin:
  • Have your Android phone available.
  • Ensure your device's battery is charged to at least 75% power - It is recommended to keep your device plugged in while performing the reset.
  • This process removes all the personal information on your Android device; make sure you have your device backed up before beginning.
Android

1 Factory Reset - Normal Mode

Remove any memory cards before resetting the device.
Each Android device is slightly different, thanks to changes each manufacturer and provider makes to how the Operating System works. Things may be slightly different on your tablet or smartphone.
It can take an hour or more for the reset to complete. Make sure your device is charged — ideally, it's best to leave it plugged in during the reset process
  1. Open Settings, and select System.
    Android Settings
    System in Android Settings.
  2. Select Reset options.
    Reset options in System Settings.
  3. Select Erase all data (factory reset).
    Reset options with Erase all data highlighted.
  4. Select Reset Phone or Reset Tablet at the bottom.
    Factory Reset with Reset Phone highlighted.
  5. You'll be asked to confirm, select Erase Everything.
    Reset confirmation with Erase Everything highlighted.
    Keep in mind that the Factory Reset can take some time.
  6. Your device should reboot and may show a progress screen indicating that it is erasing the data.
  7. After it finishes deleting the data on the device, the operating system will restart again and will arrive at a screen similar to the one when you first unpacked it from the box.

? Did you successfully reset your device?

  1. Yes, my Android device reset
  2. No, I need to reset my phone in Recovery Mode

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A factory reset is a process that erases the data on a tablet or smartphone and restores it to mostly the same condition as when it was first purchased.
Your smartphone or tablet has a lot of personal information on it. Before you sell, give away, gift, or otherwise dispose of your phone or tablet, it's good to remove your personal data to keep it safe, and to make it ready for its next owner. As well, if there's some problems that can be solved thanks to a reset.
Before You Begin:
  • Have your Android phone available.
  • Ensure your device's battery is charged to at least 75% power - It is recommended to keep your device plugged in while performing the reset.
  • This process removes all the personal information on your Android device; make sure you have your device backed up before beginning.
Android
Remove any memory cards before resetting the device.
Each Android device is slightly different, thanks to changes each manufacturer and provider makes to how the Operating System works. Things may be slightly different on your tablet or smartphone.
It can take an hour or more for the reset to complete. Make sure your device is charged — ideally, it's best to leave it plugged in during the reset process
  1. Open Settings, and select System.
    Android Settings
    System in Android Settings.
  2. Select Reset options.
    Reset options in System Settings.
  3. Select Erase all data (factory reset).
    Reset options with Erase all data highlighted.
  4. Select Reset Phone or Reset Tablet at the bottom.
    Factory Reset with Reset Phone highlighted.
  5. You'll be asked to confirm, select Erase Everything.
    Reset confirmation with Erase Everything highlighted.
    Keep in mind that the Factory Reset can take some time.
  6. Your device should reboot and may show a progress screen indicating that it is erasing the data.
  7. After it finishes deleting the data on the device, the operating system will restart again and will arrive at a screen similar to the one when you first unpacked it from the box.

Recovery mode allows you to access your Android device before the Android operating system is fully loaded. This lets you make changes you can't make while the device is running normally, such as side-load updates to gain root access or restore a 'shadow copy' of the entire operating system which resets the device.

By design, Recovery Mode is not easy to get into! This is not a feature or function you will need to access regularly, and is designed for developers.
If you are uncomfortable accessing these tools, please reach out to your cell carrier or phone manufacturer, or tablet manufacturer for assistance, instead.

Factory Reset from Recovery Mode

Every phone, tablet, or device is slightly different, and may require a different key combination. If the default, basic instructions here don't work, search the web for "recovery mode" with the make and model of your device.
  1. Push and hold the power button for a few seconds, a menu will open. Select Power Off.
    Power menu with Turn Off highlighted.
  2. Your device will turn off. Wait five seconds.
    Wait 5 seconds
  3. Use the Key Combo to enter Recovery mode to boot your device.
    Common Key Combos To Enter Recovery Mode
    Samsung Devices
    Hold Home / Bixby, Volume Up, and Power.
    LG Devices
    Hold Volume Down and Power.
    HTC Devices
    Hold Volume Down and Power.
    Google Nexus Devices
    Hold Volume Up, Volume Down, and Power.
    Sony Xperia Devices
    1. Hold just the Power button to turn on the device.
    2. Repeatedly push Volume Up and Volume Down while the device turns on.
    Motorola Devices
    Hold Home and Power.
    If your device is not listed, try each method, in turn; many devices are similar and one may work.
    Please contact your device's manufacturer if you're unable to access the Recovery Menu.
  4. After the splash screen release the Power and Volume Down buttons.
  5. The touch screen is disabled in Recovery mode in most cases. Using the volume up and down keys, highlight Wipe data / factory reset.
    Example Recovery Mode with wipe data factory reset highlighted.
  6. Tap the power button once to select Wipe data / factory reset.
  7. Follow any further prompts on the screen to complete the factory reset.
  8. Once done, your device should reboot, and you will be prompted to setup your Android device.
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