Getting locked out of your Android phone because you forgot your password or PIN can be extremely frustrating. But with the right tools and techniques, you can remove the lock screen and regain access without losing any of your valuable data.
In this complete guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know to safely bypass the lock screen on your Android device.
Why You Might Need to Remove the Lock Screen
There are a few common reasons you may need to get past the lock screen:
- You forgot your password, PIN, or pattern. It’s easy to forget your code, especially if you don’t access your phone regularly.
- You got a used or hand-me-down phone. Secondhand devices often still have the previous owner’s lock screen enabled.
- Your lock screen is malfunctioning. Sometimes a software glitch can cause your lock screen to stop responding properly.
- Your kid set a lock and forgot the passcode. Children often set locks without realizing how important the code is to access the device.
- You need data off a broken phone. If your phone is damaged but still powers on, removing the lock can help you recover data.
- You want to prank a friend. Some people like removing locks to play practical jokes on friends or family members.
Risks of Removing the Android Lock Screen
While regaining access to your phone is convenient, there are some risks to consider:
- Data loss: If you use an unsafe method, you could end up erasing all data on the device. Make sure to back up your data first.
- Malware: Some lock removal tools are bundled with shady software or malware. Only use trustworthy, well-reviewed apps.
- Voiding warranty: Tampering with system settings may void your manufacturer’s warranty in some cases. Check your warranty details.
- Privacy issues: Removing the lock gives anyone access to your personal information. Enable a new lock as soon as possible.
- Damage to device: Physically tampering with your phone can damage hardware and components. Avoid methods that require disassembly.
As long as you take precautions, you can minimize these risks and safely regain access to your device.
Preparing to Remove the Lock Screen
Before you attempt to bypass the lock, there are a few important steps to take:
- Charge the phone: Make sure your phone is charged enough to stay on throughout the process. Some methods can drain the battery quickly.
- Backup data: If possible, do a full backup of your data to the cloud or external storage. This protects you in case anything goes wrong.
- Disable antivirus apps: Temporarily disable any antivirus or security apps, which may interfere with the process. Re-enable them afterwards.
- Enable USB debugging: On Android 4.0 and higher, enable “USB Debugging” in Developer Options. This allows deeper system access.
- Gather tools: Depending on the method, you may need other devices like a Windows PC, USB cables, SD cards, etc.
With sufficient charge, backups, and the proper utilities, you’re ready to safely get past the lock screen.
Removing the Lock Screen Using Android Device Manager
One of the easiest ways to bypass a lock is using the Android Device Manager website. This works for phones and tablets running Android 2.2 and higher.
Here is the process:
- On a desktop web browser, visit android.com/find.
- Sign in with the Google account associated with the locked device.
- Select the device showing as “locked” from the device list.
- Choose “Unlock” which will allow you to enter a new PIN or password.
The unlock command will override the existing lock screen immediately. Just be sure to enter a new lock code to secure your device afterwards.
This method is incredibly handy for times when you forgot your PIN or pattern. However, it won’t work if you don’t have the Google account login or can’t access a desktop browser.
Using Android Lock Screen Removal Software
If the standard Android Device Manager method fails, your best bet is to use lock removal software. Here are some top apps to consider:
dr.fone – Screen Unlock from Wondershare is a highly rated lock removal tool with a high success rate. It supports 6000+ Android device models and works without any data loss.
UnlocoGo is designed to bypass locks on Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi, LG, HTC, and other major brands. It also helps remove Google FRP lock.
4uKey can get past pattern, PIN, password and fingerprint locks quickly. It integrates directly with Android devices.
These apps work by exploiting Android’s recovery mode to reset the lock credentials. The process varies slightly but typically involves:
- Downloading and installing the removal app on a Windows PC.
- Enabling USB debugging mode on your phone.
- Connecting the phone to your computer via USB.
- Confirming any disclaimers about voiding warranty.
- Clicking “Remove” or “Unlock” and waiting for completion.
- Unplugging your phone and testing to confirm the lock is gone.
The best apps like dr.fone and iMyFone are extremely safe to use. They do not affect your data or alter the system. Just make sure to never factory reset your device when prompted during the process.
Using Android Fastboot Mode
On some newer Android devices, you may need to use Fastboot mode rather than recovery mode to reset the lock credentials.
Here is an overview of how to remove a lock screen using Fastboot:
- Power off your Android device.
- Hold Volume Down + Power to reboot into Fastboot mode.
- Connect the phone to your PC with a USB cable.
- Type fastboot oem unlock which will factory reset lock screen credentials.
- Type fastboot reboot to exit Fastboot and restart normally.
- Set a new lock screen password once your phone loads up.
This Fastboot method wipes the lock but also wipes all other user data. So only use it if you have no other options and don’t need the data.
Using Find My Device or Find My Mobile
For newer Samsung Galaxy phones, you may be able to use Samsung’s Find My Mobile service to remove the lock remotely. The process is similar to Android Device Manager.
- On your computer, visit findmymobile.samsung.com.
- Sign in with your Samsung account credentials.
- Select your locked phone from the device list.
- Choose “Unlock” to reset the screen lock.
You can alternatively try Apple’s Find My app if trying to unlock an iPhone. Just be sure to use your Apple ID credentials.
Performing a Factory Reset via Recovery Mode
As a last resort, you can factory reset your phone from recovery mode to fully reset the lock screen.
However, this will erase all data on your device. Only use this method if you have no other options.
Here are the basic steps:
- Power off the locked phone.
- Hold Volume Up + Power + Home to enter recovery mode.
- Use volume keys to scroll to “Wipe data/factory reset” and select it.
- Choose “Yes — erase all user data” to confirm the reset.
- Let the reset complete, then set a new lock screen.
On some phones, you may need to press Volume Down + Power rather than Home for recovery mode. The reset will restore your device to factory default settings.
Summary of Lock Screen Removal Methods
To recap, here are the main ways you can get past a lost lock screen on Android:
- Android Device Manager (easy but limited)
- Lock screen removal apps (best choice overall)
- Fastboot mode (may wipe data)
- Find My Device services (Samsung/Google)
- Factory reset via recovery (erases all data)
Ideally, you want to use non-destructive methods like Android Device Manager or removal apps. But if you have no other options, data-erasing methods are available.
The key is researching the correct techniques for your specific phone model and Android OS version.
Key Takeaways and Recommendations
Getting past a forgotten lock screen can be daunting, but these tips will help:
- Always backup your data in case the worst happens during removal.
- Carefully research the proper recovery mode steps for your exact phone model before trying data-wiping methods.
- Legitimate lock screen removal apps from trusted developers are generally very safe if used properly.
- Never factory reset your device when using a removal app unless explicitly instructed.
- Enable USB debugging beforehand so your phone can communicate with removal tools.
- Once the lock is removed, immediately set a new PIN, pattern or password.
- Avoid rooting, jailbreaking or disassembling your phone unless no other options exist.
As long as you take precautions, you can regain access to your locked Android device without losing any personal data or media. Just have patience and utilize the many removal tools and techniques covered above.
Also, click to know the Galaxy S9 FRP lock bypass without a computer.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are answers to some common questions about removing Android lock screens:
Q: How can I tell if my data will be deleted when removing a lock?
A: Factory reset and data wiping methods will erase data. Removal apps and online tools generally do not affect data.
Q: Will removing a lock screen void my warranty?
A: It shouldn’t void the warranty, but always check your manufacturer’s policy just in case.
Q: Do I need a computer to remove the lock screen?
A: Most methods do require a PC, but some newer phones allow removal through cloud services.
Q: What if my phone is damaged and can’t turn on?
A: Unfortunately none of these lock removal methods will work if the phone won’t power on.
Q: Can I reset the lock screen if I forgot my Google account?
A: No, you need to login with the associated Google account for online unlocking services.
Q: What should I do if my phone gets stuck in a boot loop?
A: Force power it off by long pressing the Power button. Then carefully repeat the steps to enter recovery or fastboot mode.
Q: Is there any way to find my forgotten password or PIN?
A: Aside from guessing, there is no way to recover or view a forgotten lock screen code.
Q: Will these methods work for tablet devices too?
A: Yes, Android tablets can also be unlocked using the same tools and procedures.
While a locked Android phone can be a headache, there is almost always a way to bypass the lock screen without losing your files and data. With the right preparation and research into your specific device, you can safely regain access with minimal hassle. Just be very wary of any method that mentions data deletion or factory reset without backups. And once you’re back in, remember to immediately re-enable a secure lock screen password.