Fix: Google Chrome flickering on Android

For most Android users, Google Chrome is the go-to internet browser for a variety of reasons. The app went through a lot of changes over the years and, although you can probably find better browsers in specific categories, Chrome still comes as the built-in browser and it’s an all-around the best if you rely on Google’s ecosystem. Sadly, despite Google’s power and all the data they have, this browser still doesn’t always work as intended. Some users on Google forums report that Google Chrome is flickering on Android and we have a few ways to solve this problem. You can find them below.

Table of contents:

  1. Uninstall updates for Android System WebView
  2. Disable Chrome flags
  3. Clear the data from Chrome or Google app
  4. Uninstall updates from Chrome or Google app
  5. Reset the device to factory settings

Why are my Google Chrome browser and Google app flickering?

Your Google Chrome browser or Google app might flicker because of corrupted local data, issues with Android System WebView, or a system bug.

If your Google Chrome or the Google app keeps flickering, make sure to uninstall updates from Android System WebView, clear data from Google Chrome and Google App, and uninstall updates for Chrome and Google, too. Finally, if nothing works, you should reset your device to factory settings and start from scratch.

1. Uninstall updates for Android System WebView

The most probable reason for this occurrence lies in Android System WebView. We explained what’s WebView’s role on Android in this article, but, to summarize, WebView is an essential Android component that deals with browser integration in first-party and third-party apps. And, a few years ago, this service had a faulty update that completely broke the internet so Google had to push a fix as fast as possible. Millions of users were affected and both browsers and apps with built-in browser capabilities didn’t work for that brief period.

This all leads us to believe that, when Google Chrome or the Google app starts flickering, the WebView is the first place to look at. With that in mind, there are two things you can do with Android System WebView. The first one is to clear the local data and the second one is to reset the app by uninstalling updates. Sometimes, the app won’t auto-update on its own so you need to re-update it manually.

To clear data from Android System WebView, navigate to Settings > Apps and open Android System WebView from the list of installed apps. Tap Storage and clear data. On the other hand, if that did nothing to fix Google Chrome flickering on your Android, follow these steps to uninstall updates from Android System WebView:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Select Apps.
  3. Open Android System WebView. On some Android skins and versions, you might need to enable Show system processes to see Android System WebView.
  4. Tap on the 3-dots menu and select Uninstall updates.Google Chrome flickering on Android
  5. Now, from the same App Info screen, select App details in Store.
  6. Tap Update and restart your Android.

2. Disable Chrome flags

Another possible reason for Chrome issues is Chrome flags that are experimental features. That is if you made any changes and enabled one of those experimental features. We talked about web content Dark mode that can be enabled in Chrome, but even that can cause issues on some Chrome versions. So, the best troubleshooting step, in this case, is to navigate to Chrome Flags and reset everything to factory values.

Here’s how to disable Chrome flags on your Android:

  1. Open Google Chrome.
  2. In the Omnibox/search bar type chrome://flags and then enter.
  3. Tap on the Reset all button next to the search bar.
  4. Confirm and restart your Android.

3. Clear the data from Chrome or Google app

The next thing you can do is clear the data from Chrome. You can do the same for the Google app if you experience flickers when using Google Search. Or, just to be sure, clear the data from both apps and check for improvements. That might be the best way to go.

To clear local data for Chrome and Google, navigate once more to Settings > Apps and open the app. Tap Storage and select Manage data. Clear all data and check if the apps continue flickering or not.Google Chrome flickering on Android

4. Uninstall updates from Chrome or Google app

Removing updates is the next obvious step if Google Chrome keeps flickering on your Android. The system apps can’t be uninstalled and, at best, you might be able to disable them. However, what you can do is (as mentioned with WebView) reset them by restoring the app to the factory version. After the reset, you can update them and check if the issue persists. This step is especially useful if you upgraded to a newer Android version.

Here’s how to uninstall updates from Chrome or Google app:

  1. Open Play Store and search for Google Chrome.
  2. Once you expand the app from the results, tap Uninstall.
  3. Confirm that you want to uninstall updates from Chrome.
  4. Do the same for the Google app and then restart your Android.
  5. Update both apps and check if the screen flickers during use or the problems stopped.

In addition, you can also leave the Beta program for the Google app and opt-in for a regular stable version.

5. Reset the device to factory settings

Finally, the only thing we can recommend is resetting your device in hope that the problem will be addressed after a fresh start. We are big proponents of factory resets after major Android updates because most issues occur right after you’ve got a newer Android version. Here you can learn more about going through factory reset as painless as possible. The most important thing is to back up everything before doing anything because, as you probably know, factory reset wipes everything from the local storage.

With that said, we can conclude this article. Thank you for reading and don’t forget to tell us if the instructions provided here are helpful. You can do that in the comments section below.


FAQ

If your screen keeps flickering in apps on Android, uninstall WebView updates and re-update the app. Also, make sure that you haven't meddled with developer options where certain settings can affect the way your device performs.

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