Fix: Unfortunately, IMS Service has stopped on Android

Samsung creates its own UI on top of the Android and provides their self designed basic applications such as Messaging, browser, settings, etc. The IP Multimedia SubSystem is an architectural framework for delivering multimedia services to consumers. Quite recently, a lot of reports have been coming in of users who are experiencing the “IMS Service Has Stopped” message on their screens sometimes randomly and sometimes while trying to call or message someone.

IMS Service has stopped error message

What Causes the “IMS Service Has Stopped” Error Message?

After receiving numerous reports from multiple users we decided to investigate the matter and devised a set of solutions which were tested to solve the problem with most users. Also, we looked into the reasons due to which this can be triggered and listed them below:

  • Cache:  All applications store cache in order to decrease loading times. The cache decreases the time it takes to load a certain application by saving temporary files on the partition. However, over time this cache can be corrupted. This corrupted cache can cause issues with certain Android applications especially with the messaging app and prevent it from working properly. When the application doesn’t work properly it displays the IMS service has stopped error.
  • Default Messaging App: Depending on the region where you live and the Network provider that you use there are certain configuration files that the Network providers apply before providing the internet, calling and messaging facilities. It is possible that these configuration settings are interfering with certain elements of the default applications and preventing them from working properly.
  • Outdated Applications: In some cases, outdated applications might not work properly with the updated version of the Android. Also, it is possible that there were any bugs in the applications and they got fixed by the developers in the updates and were not fixed on the outdated application.
  • Outdated Android Software: It is possible that the Android software or the Manufacturer’s UI on top of the operating system experienced some bug which was fixed in an update, therefore, if you have not updated your Android to the latest version you might experience this error.
  • Third Party Messaging Applications: Sometimes, third-party applications can overtake the default messaging application and cause issues with the messaging service. If the default messaging service is blocked or disabled this message is displayed.

Now that you have a basic understanding of the nature of the issue we will move on towards the solutions. In order to avoid any conflicts, it is recommended that you follow the steps accurately and in the specific order in which they are provided.

Solution 1: Checking for Software Updates

It is possible that the Android software or the Manufacturer’s UI on top of the operating system experienced some bug which was fixed in an update. Therefore, in this step, we will be checking for any software updates to the mobile. For that:

  1. Unlock the phone and open the settings.
  2. Scroll down to the bottom and tap on “About Phone“.
  3. Click on the “Software Updates” and select the “Check for Updates” option.
  4. If a new software update is available, click on the “Download Now” option that appears after the checking process has finished.
  5. After the phone finishes downloading the update, it will prompt you to confirm the installation of the update select “Yes” and the phone will now be restarted.
  6. The update will be installed and the phone will launch back into the normal mode, check to see if the issue still persists.
    The process of checking for software updates

Solution 2: Checking for Application Updates

Sometimes, if certain applications are outdated they can cause conflicts with the operating system and sometimes even with other applications. Therefore, in this step, we will be checking the Google Play Store for new updates to the applications. For that:

  1. Unlock the phone and open the Google Play Store application.
  2. Click on the menu button on the top left corner and select the “My Apps & Games” option.
    Clicking on the menu button inside Google play store
  3. Tap on the “Updates” tab and select the “Refresh” icon.
  4. Click on the “Update All” option and wait for the applications to be updated and installed.
  5. Check to see if the issue persists.

Solution 3: Changing Message Configurations

It is possible that the configuration settings of the network carrier are interfering with certain elements of the messaging app and are preventing it from working properly. Therefore, in this step, we will be disabling the network settings of the carrier inside the messaging application. For that:

For AT&T:

  1. Open up the default messaging application.
  2. Click on the menu button on the top right corner and select “Settings“.
    Clicking on the Menu button on the top right corner
  3. Now click on “AT&T Messages Backup & Sync” and select the “Disable the Sync” option.
  4. Restart the mobile and check to see if the issue persists.
    Note: After Restarting the mobile make sure that it wasn’t re-enabled back automatically. If it was, simply disable it again and skip the restart process.

For Rich Communications:

  1. Open the Default messaging application and click on the menu button on the top right corner.
    Clicking on the Menu button on the top right corner
  2. SelectSettings” from the list and click on “Chose chat settings“.
  3. Tap on the “Rich Communications Settings” and uncheck “Rich Communications” from the list.
  4. Restart the mobile phone and check to see if the issue persists.

Solution 4: Launching in Safe Mode

The safe mode disables pretty much every other application installed on the phone except for the default one. This can prevent other apps from interfering with the default messaging application and help to identify the issue. Therefore, in this step, we will be launching the device in the Safe Mode. For that:

  1. Press the power button and select “Switch OFF” option.
  2. Once the device is turned off completely, switch it on by holding the power button for 2 seconds.
  3. When the Samsung animation logo displays hold down the “Volume Down” button.
    Samsung Animation Logo while starting the device
  4. The word “Safe Mode” must be displayed in the lower left corner of the screen if the process was successful.
  5. Check to see if the issue persists, if it is solved try to delete one thirdparty application and then check if the message still shows up.
  6. You can continue this process until by deleting a certain application the problem is solved.

Solution 5: Deleting Cache

Over time, the cache can be corrupted. This corrupted cache can cause issues with certain Android applications especially with the default messaging application. Therefore, in this step, we will be wiping the cache from the partition completely. For that:

  1. Hold down the power button and select “Switch OFF“.
  2. Hold the “Home” button and “VolumeUPbutton simultaneously and then press and hold the “Power” button as well.
  3. When the Samsung Logo screen appears, release only the “Power” key.
  4. When the Android logo screen shows release all the keys the screen might show “Installing System Update” for a couple of minutes before showing the Android Recovery Options.
  5. Press the “Volume down” key until the “Wipe Cache Partition” is highlighted.
    Navigating down to the “Wipe Cache Partition option”
  6. Press the “Power” button and wait for the device to clear the cache partition.
  7. When the process is completed, navigate down the list through the “Volume Down” button until “Reboot System Now” is highlighted.
  8. Press “Power” key to select the option and restart the device.
  9. Once the device is restarted, check to see if the issue persists.
    Note: You must be very careful with this process because even a slight mistake during this can cause the phone software to get bricked permanently.
Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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Fix: Unfortunately, IMS Service has stopped on Android

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