Technology is great but devices like tablet go wrong in various ways. Here we've compiled a list of the most commonly asked questions about tablets and answered them all.
The tricky part to this task is answering the questions for every device – since there are a number of different operating systems, manufacturers and models. These are all general issues and we'll try to make them relevant no matter what your device is – Android, iOS or Windows. However, if you have a really specific problem you may need to find the answer elsewhere like a forum.
Why is my tablet so slow? Why is my tablet running slow?
Pretty much any tablet will feel fast when you first take it out of the box and set it up – unless you bought a really rubbish one (in which case you should try and take it back). However, like a lot of tech gadgets, they can get slow over time.
This can happen for a number of reasons but the most common is simply filling it up with apps, media, temporary files and other general digital junk. You should try and delete any apps you're not using or that movie which you're probably not going to watch again to free up some valuable space.
It might be than a particular app or a few apps are hogging valuable resources so you may need to weed these out. To find out how much RAM your apps are using go to Settings > Apps > Running or similar if your tablet doesn't point this kind of thing out automatically.
You may have a virus or malware which is doing nasty things without you knowing so make sure you get some good antivirus software for it.
If all else fails you can always perform a factory reset to get things back to how they were when you first set up your tablet. Make sure you backup any data you don't want to lose first and avoid doing a restore so you can try and just download the things you really need and use.
Why is my tablet battery dying so fast? Why is my tablet battery not charging? Why is my tablet charging so slowly?
Battery life, like performance, is something which can often degrade over time. If it is dying quickly and you've had your tablet for a while then it might be that it needs replacing – if your device is new contact the supplier or manufacturer to get a replacement. You might have apps which are using a lot of battery by doing things in the background so check which ones are the biggest juice guzzlers in Settings > Battery or similar. How to make your phone's battery last longer.
To help with battery life issues start by switching things off that you're not using such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS and only turn them on when really needed. You can also carry around a portable battery pack to keep your tablet topped up.
See our round-up of the best power banks.
If your tablet is charging slowly you might be using the wrong charger or you've got it plugged into a USB port which doesn't have a good output. If the above doesn't apply then your tablet could be faulty.
When it comes to a tablet battery not charging, this might be because your battery is completely dead and it needs replacing. It could also be the charger or the charging port. Try multiple chargers and try moving the cable around in the port a little to see if there is a dodgy connection. If you can't fix the problem yourself then you'll need to take it to be repaired. Also see: How to charge your phone or tablet faster.
Why is my tablet hot? Why is my tablet heating up? Why is my tablet overheating?
A device getting too hot can be a worry but it can also be totally normal. If you're charging your tablet then it will get quite warm so don't panic about that. If you've been using it intensely to do something like watch a film or shoot video with the camera then this will inevitably get the internals working hard which creates heat.
A lot of tablets these days have a metal design so can feel very warm or hot to the touch. However, this can actually be a good thing as the chassis is acting like a heatsync and allowing the heat to escape.
If you have a case on your tablet then this could well be stopping the heat from escaping and causing your device to overheat. You might need to use it without the case where possible or get an alternative which isn't like putting a winter coat on it.
If you feel your device is overheating in a detrimental way which it shouldn't – for example some devices with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor have this problem – contact the supplier or manufacture for a replacement or a refund.
Why is my tablet in safe mode?
If you find your tablet in safe mode – normally pretty obvious because there will be a message stating it at the corner of the screen – then you probably did it by accident. You can boot into safe mode on most devices by holding a volume key while pressing the power button.
For most tablets, getting out of safe mode is simply a case of rebooting it.
Why is my tablet internet so slow?
If things are happening slowly on your tablet and you're not talking about laggy interface performance, it's probably your data connection.
Most tablets will be Wi-Fi only while some may have a SIM-card slot like your phone to connect to a mobile network for data. For starters, it's worth switching these connections off and on again to see if simply reconnecting makes a difference. If you've put a case on your tablet it may be blocking the signal so take it off and see if that helps.
Quite often, the problem is not with the tablet itself but the network you're connecting to. If you're on mobile data and not using 4G, internet speeds can be slow, especially when you're in an area with bad signal. It could also be that the mobile network you're using is experiencing problems so check the service status.
If you're on Wi-Fi and experiencing slow internet it might be you're router's fault. Try resetting it and see if that helps. Note that if other people are using the network then you don't have free reign of the bandwidth. If someone's streaming a film on Netflix and/or someone is downloading a large game on Steam then these types of activities are likely to be a cause of your slow speed.
You can test your speed with the Speed Test app (or via the web at speedtest.net) to check if you're getting the speed you're supposed to. Make sure no one is using the internet while you conduct the test. If the results are low your ISP (internet service provider) might be throttling your connection. This might be for a good reason – eg to give you a stable connection – but it's worth making contact to find out what's happening.
If none of the above helps then you could have an internal problem with your tablet's hardware so it will need to be checked properly. Contact the supplier, manufacturer or a repair centre.