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Reset your Pixel phone or Nexus device to factory settings

You can remove data from your Pixel phone or Nexus device by resetting it to factory settings. Resetting to factory settings is also known as formatting the device or doing a "hard reset."

If you're factory resetting your device to fix an issue, make sure that you've tried all other troubleshooting options first. Learn how to troubleshoot your issue.

Important: Performing a factory reset will erase all data from the device.

Get ready to factory reset

For a successful factory reset, take these key steps before you start.

Step 1: Know a Google username and password for the device

To ensure that it's really you doing the reset, you may need to enter a Google username and password associated with the device.

  • Standard option
    To reset with your Settings app, if you have a screen lock, you need the password, PIN or pattern to reset the device. If you don't have the password, you won't be able to reset the device.
  • Advanced option
    To reset in Recovery mode, you need a Google username and password associated with the device. If you don't have the username and password, you won't be able to use the device at all after reset.

Recent password reset

If you recently reset your Google Account password, wait 24 hours before performing a factory reset.

Exceptions

If you haven't added a Google Account to your device, or your device is running Android 5.0 or lower, you won't need a Google username and password to use your device after factory reset. Learn how to see what version of Android you have.

Step 2: Back up your data to your Google Account

A factory data reset will erase all data from the device.

While any data stored in your Google Account will be restored, all apps and their associated data will be uninstalled.

To be ready to restore your data, make sure that your data is backed up to your Google Account. Learn how to back up to your Google Account from a Pixel phone or from a Nexus device.

Step 3: Plug your device in to a power source

Make sure to plug in your device before starting the factory reset. Keep it plugged in until the factory reset completes.

Performing a factory reset may take up to an hour depending on your device and available memory.

Step 4: Make sure you have an Internet connection

You'll need to sign in to your Google Account. To sign in, make sure that your device is connected to Wi-Fi or your cellular network.

Factory reset your device

For the best results and fewest steps, use the Settings app to factory data reset ("format") your device.

After following all the "Get ready" steps above:

  1. Open your device's Settings app Settings.
  2. Under "Personal," tap Backup & reset.
  3. Tap Factory data reset and then Reset phone or Reset tablet.
  4. If you have a screen lock, you'll need to enter your pattern, PIN, or password.
  5. When prompted, tap Erase everything to erase all data from your device's internal storage.
  6. When your device has finished erasing, select the option to reboot your device.
  7. When you're done, restore your data. Learn how to restore your data on a Pixel phone or on a Nexus device.

If you can't get to your Settings app, you can factory reset in Recovery mode:

Advanced option: Reset in Recovery mode

After following all the "Get ready" steps above:

  1. If your device is on, turn it off.
  2. Press and hold the Volume down button. While holding Volume down, press and hold the Power button until the phone turns on. You'll see the word "Start" with an arrow around it.
  3. Press the Volume down button until you highlight "Recovery mode."
  4. Press the Power button to start recovery mode. You'll see an image of an Android robot with an exclamation mark (you may also see "No command").
  5. Press and hold the Power button. While holding Power, press the Volume up button once. Then release the Power button.
  6. If "Wipe data/factory reset" isn't highlighted, press the Volume down button until it is. Then press the Power button to select it.
  7. Press the Volume down button until you highlight "Yes" (or "Yes - delete all user data"). Then press the Power button to select it.
  8. After the reset is complete, press the Power button to select "Reboot system now."
  9. When you're done, restore your data. Learn how to restore your data on a Pixel phone or on a Nexus device.

Tip: If your device becomes unresponsive, you can restart it by holding down the Power button for several seconds.

Amy

Amy is an Android expert and author of this help page. Leave her feedback below about the page.

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