Article ID : SX675703 / Last Modified : 04/09/2023Print

The screen doesn't turn off during a call when you hold the phone close to your face (Android 9.0, Android 10 or Android 11)

Why doesn't the screen turn off during a call when you hold the phone close to your face?

    IMPORTANT: This article applies only to specific products and/or operating systems. Check Applicable Products and Categories for details.

    Valid for

    • Android 11
    • Android 10
    • Android 9.0 Pie


    Things to keep in mind about the proximity sensor

    Your device has a sensor that detects proximity. The proximity sensor turns off the touch screen during voice calls when your ear is close to the screen. This prevents you from unintentionally activating other functions on your device when you are engaged in a call. The proximity sensor is located on the upper front part of the phone (above the display). The time needed for the sensor to turn on or off the display before or after a call is fixed. It can take up to a few seconds for the display to turn on or off.

    When does the proximity sensor not work as intended?

    The proximity sensor may not work as intended in the following cases:

    • You may have forgotten to remove the temporary transparent protection film that covers the touchscreen when you first buy it. This film is only designed to protect the screen during shipping and is easy to peel off. Often you can recognise it by its protruding tab.
    • If your device has a screen protection film, make sure it's specifically intended for your Xperia model. It's important that such a protective film has the holes for the proximity sensor and the front camera in the correct positions.
    • Make sure the proximity sensor is clean. Many problems with the proximity sensor may be solved by cleaning it.
    • If you use a case or cover which is not well suited to the phone, it may impact the functionality of the proximity sensor. The case may be covering the sensor.
    • There may be other causes for the sensor not working as intended.

    What to do when the screen doesn't turn off during a call when you hold the phone close to your face

    Try these methods one after the other. Verify after each method whether the problem was solved before trying the next one.

    • Make sure to remove the transparent film that covers the touchscreen when you first buy it. This film typically has a protruding tab.
    • Check that any protective film that your device uses, has the holes for the proximity sensor and the front camera in the correct positions. The sensor is placed at the top of the device above the screen. To verify the exact location of the proximity sensor for your Xperia model, refer to the User guide. You can view an illustration of the device and the main hardware parts in the Getting started chapter under Overview. If you can't verify that the protection film is correctly fitted, remove it.
    • Clean the proximity sensor.
    • Remove any case or cover you use with your phone.
    • Force the phone to restart.
    • Test the proximity sensor in your phone.
    • Make sure your device is fully charged. Then perform a system software update, if one is available.
    • Back up any important data saved on your device, then perform a factory data reset.
    • Contact the original vendor or contact us. If you need to hand in your device for service, back up all your data you want to keep. You can refer to the article: How to create a backup of your Xperia device. Data on the device is deleted when examined. Also, remove all Google accounts you have on your device, before handing it in. Don't forget to supply proper documentation, for example, proof of purchase and warranty card. The documentation required may vary depending on market, country or region.

    To force the device to restart

    1. Press and hold down both the Volume up key and the power key until your device vibrates three times, then release the keys. The device turns off automatically.
    2. After the device is turned off, restart your device by pressing the power key.

    To test the proximity sensor

    1. Find and tap Settings → Support. If this is the first time you have launched the Support app, tap ACCEPT to accept the privacy policy.
    2. On the tab, scroll down and tap Ear proximity, then follow the on-screen instructions.

    To perform a factory data reset

    1. Make a backup of any personal content that you want to keep and that is stored on the internal memory of your device. Photos, videos, music and other data stored on an external memory card do not get erased.
    2. Make sure you know your Google™ account username and password.
      NOTE! Depending on your security settings, you may need to enter the Google account credentials you use on your Xperia device to be able to use it after a factory data reset.
    3. Find and tap: Settings → System → Advanced → Reset options  Erase all data (factory reset)  RESET PHONE.
    4. If required, draw your screen unlock pattern or enter your screen unlock password or PIN to continue.

    NOTE! When you perform a factory data reset, you erase all personal data stored on the internal storage of your Xperia device. Make sure that you always back up data stored on the internal storage that you want to keep before performing a factory data reset. Photos, videos, music and documents stored on the SD card do not get erased during a factory data reset.

    Updating the system software

    The easiest way to install a software update is to do it wirelessly from your device. However, some updates are not available for wireless download. In such cases, you must check for new software using a USB cable and a computer running Xperia Companion.

    To download and install a system update wirelessly

    1. If you are using a device with multiple users, make sure you are logged in as the owner.
    2. Make sure your device is connected to the Internet. It's recommended to use a Wi-Fi network instead of a mobile network to download new software to avoid data traffic costs.
    3. Find and tap: Settings System Advanced Software update SYSTEM.
    4. If a system update is available, tap UPDATE.
    5. When the update is installed, tap RESTART.

    To update your device using a computer

    1. Computer: If not already installed, download and install the Xperia Companion application from the Xperia Companion page.
    2. Open the Xperia Companion application.
    3. Connect your Xperia device to the computer using a USB cable.
    4. Xperia device: When prompted by the Allow access? message, tap ALLOW.
    5. Computer: After a few moments, the Xperia Companion application detects your device and searches for new software for it. If a new software update is detected, a pop-up window appears on the computer. Follow the on-screen instructions to update your Xperia device.
    6. To manually check for new software, click Software update on the Xperia Companion home screen.