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If you’re experiencing “WiFi Authentication Error“, it can be really frustrating.
Resist the urge to bash your phone, however, and check out some of the fixes below.
This problem frequently occurs with Android devices when they try and fail to establish a connection to Wifi.
Why Do WiFi Authentication Errors Occur?
According to DrFone, there are a variety of reasons why.
They range from WiFi router malfunctions, phone updates causing driver malfunctions, or even security attacks that create unstable connections or router blockages.
There are some easy fixes you should try. Bear with us- you can scroll past them if you’ve already attempted these simple solutions.
- Reset Your phone
- Power your router off and on
- Reset your WiFi router (watch video below for instructions)
How To Reset & Hard Reset A Router
The HowCast team did a full tutorial on resetting routers. They say that while routers are ingenious inventions that provide computers access to the Internet, they sometimes grow slow with age or they just stop working altogether.
In most cases, the solution is resetting them. HowCast walks you through several ways to reset your router. One of the easiest ways to do it- simply unplug it.
Since every router is connected to a power supply, you can just detach the power plug, wait a second and then put the plug back in, and presto, it’s reset!
Some routers will have a power switch and others have a reset button you can access with the end of a paperclip.
Watch the video above to understand what a hard reset is- it will wipe out the memory of the router. It will revert it to its factory default settings, just like when you bought it from the store.
So do a hard reset as a last resort!
8 Solutions For The WiFi Authentication Error
Solution #1 (Airplane Mode)
Over at TechniPages, the tech blogger explains that when you enable Airplane Mode it turns off all radio-frequency signal transmission on your phone.
In Airplane mode, you’re still able to use Bluetooth, WiFi, or even place a phone call.
What happens sometimes- your phone’s mobile network is actually interfering with your ability to connect to a WiFi network. So it makes sense to try this fix to clear the authentication error. You can easily access the Airplane mode on most phones by swiping from the top (or the bottom with an iPhone).If you’re able to connect to the WIFi network in Airplane mode, try turning it off and connecting to the WiFi network- it should work. If not, check out some of the other fixes we’ve compiled below.
Solution #2 (Static IP)
TechniPages also says that this authentication error could be caused by an IP conflict.
To test if this is the issue, he advises modifying the wireless network setting from DHCP (default) to Static IP.
We found a good write-up of how to do this over at DigitBin:
- Navigate to your Android’s Settings
- Open the Wi-Fi
- Find for your desired network.
- Conduct a long press on the WiFi network and find Advanced Settings. (Sometimes you’ll find it located under Modify Network or just by clicking on the network.)
- Here, you’ll want to modify the IP setting from DHCP to Static.
- Next, you’ll assign the IP Address 192.168.1.*** (You’ll want to add any number from 1 to 225 in place of ***)
- Now, leave everything else as is.
- Make sure to save the changes and check if WiFi has connected.
A video walk-through below provides an even more detailed process.
How To Set A Static IP On Android
Solution #3 (Keyboard Theme)
Over in Tom’s Guide, a user was struggling to connect his smartphone to his home’s WiFi. Initially, it had worked fine, but then just stopped. He had tried the generic fixes like rebooting his cellphone, his WiFi router and enabling airplane mode to no effect.
A weird suggestion that apparently worked for some users (on Sony Experia, and a Galaxy S6 Edge) was to change the smartphone’s keyboard or theme.
Apparently, the WiFi might not be correctly recognizing the passcode you’re entering using that particular keyboard.
Changing it up, or perhaps restoring it to a default, was able to fix the problem- and the WiFi network magically accepts the passcode typed on a different keyboard theme.
Solution #4 (Never Sleep)
In that same Tom’s Guide thread, another user came up with a solution that worked for him. The way it works, on your phone:
- Navigate to your WiFi Settings
- Choose Advanced
- Locate the option to have WiFi on during sleep.
- Switch this to “Never”
- Reset your phone
- Then, go back into the same WiFi Settings area
- Choose advanced
- Change WiFi to be on always during sleep
Solution #5 (WPS Pin)
In a different Tom’s Guide thread, a user posted that he was having this WiFi authentication error with his Android Tablet. Whenever he tried to connect it kept giving him this Authentication Problem.
He had tried forgetting his WiFI network, re-connecting, but no dice.
One of the top solutions came from a user who said the following fix worked for him:
- Navigate to WiFi > Advanced
- Another screen should appear that says WPS Pin Entry
- Click it
- It will provide you a pin
- Navigate to your router’s IP address
- Find the WiFi screen
- Input the pin
- See if it connects
Solution #6 (WiFi Interference)
Another user in the same thread said that after an embarrassing visit to a Verizon support center, where his phone easily connected, he discovered that the problem was that the previous homeowner had installed several WiFi surveillance cameras that were interfering with his phone’s ability to connect to WiFi.
After unplugging them, he was able to connect.
Before you mess too much with your phone or tablet, check your router. I was getting “authentication error occurred” on both my new 2018 Samsung Galaxy tablet and phone.
Solution #7 (Radio Settings)
Another proposed solution came from a user who found that modifying some router settings did the trick. Here’s what he did. He found that his router network mode in Wireless > Radio Settings was set to N only.
When he switched that to “B/G/N mixed”, both his tablet and smartphone swiftly and immediately connected with a strong signal.
Solution #8 (Clear Google Data)
Over in Tom’s Guide a Samsung Galaxy SII T989 T Mobile user was experiencing the WiFi authentication error. He did the normal restart and reset routine on his phone and router, but still kept getting the error. The top voted solution came from a tech guru who suggested the following:
- Forget your WiFi name from WiFi (delete everything you can plus forget the network, the entered password)
- Navigate to Settings > Apps > All > Clear data in Google Services Framework
How To Fix Android Obtaining WiFi Address & Can’t Connect To The Internet Errors
A popular tech YouTuber addresses the error, creating a tutorial to help Android phone users with WiFi connection problems.
He says that one of the primary issues is that the WiFi network has static IP problem and when you try to connect to a Wi-Fi network, it will say obtaining IP address and it will not get connected and you will see that message on your Android phone.
So in case you are seeing that particular message: the vlogger demonstrates how you can fix it, how you can actually solve that problem- it can actually occur on any on any Android phone, regardless of whatever type of WiFi router you are trying to correct.
He advises that typically it’s a problem with the WiFi network, not with your phone- so this video might be worth watching to help address router issues.
Google Phone History
- Android Dev Phones
- One of the phones of the Google Nexus family:
- Nexus One, an HTC-manufactured smartphone, first appeared in January 2010
- Nexus S, a Samsung-manufactured followup to the Nexus One, first appeared in December 2010
- Galaxy Nexus, a Samsung-manufactured followup to the Nexus S, first appeared in November 2011
- Nexus 4, LG-manufactured followup to the Galaxy Nexus, first appeared in November 2012
- Nexus 5, LG-manufactured followup to the Nexus 4, first appeared in November 2013
- Nexus 6, Motorola-manufactured followup to the Nexus 5, first appeared in November 2014
- Nexus 5X, an LG-manufactured followup to the Nexus 5, first appeared in October 2015
- Nexus 6P, a Huawei-manufactured followup to the Nexus 6, first appeared in September 2015
- One of the phones of the Google Pixel family.
There you have it- a range of different fixes for the WiFi Authentication Error. As we’ve seen, this error typically occurs with Google devices- though the problem can be addressed by tinkering with your router, as well.
Let us know if any of these fixes worked- or supply your own in the comments section!
Ryan is a computer enthusiast who has a knack for fixing difficult and technical software problems. Whether you’re having issues with Windows, Safari, Chrome or even an HP printer, Ryan helps out by figuring out easy solutions to common error codes.