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Waiting for Wi-Fi to continue large download? Try these 6 solutions

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If you’re an Android user, your phone is hardly useful without Google Play Store. Downloading and updating apps is of the utmost importance, of course. It requires an internet connection and it’ll inform you if it fails to connect with the “Google Play is waiting for Wi-Fi” prompt, especially when downloading a large app or game. However, some users are seeing this prompt even though they can confirm both Wi-Fi and Mobile Data are working perfectly.

Why does Google Play Store get stuck Waiting for Wi-Fi to continue large download? Logically, one would assume that the problem is an internet connection for obvious reasons. But, after some research, we realized that the problem might be a Play Store bug — one that’s especially prominent on older Android versions. There might be a problem with corrupt local data or associated Google services. If you want to use Mobile Data to download or update apps and games, make sure to allow this in Play Store settings.

Why is Play Store stuck on waiting for download?

Here’s what to do if Play Store is stuck waiting for Wi-Fi to continue a large download:

  • Restart your Android device and give it another try.
  • Tap Cancel when prompted and then tap Download, as our reader Jan noticed. Thank you, Jan.
  • Check for Wi-Fi problems. If you are on Mobile data, open Play Store > Your Account > Settings > Network preferences and allow updates and downloads over mobile data.
  • Reset Google Play Store and associated services.
  • Keep your system up to date.

1. Check your connection

Let’s start with a rather obvious troubleshooting step. This might be just another of those network issues, and we need to check it to confirm that there’s nothing wrong. Of course, we’ll look into both Wi-Fi and Mobile data (4G), as the reports state that neither of those works for the Play Store.

Here are some steps we need you to follow:

  • Try using any other app which depends on the connection. If everything is fine, move to Solution 2. If not, continue with the steps below.
  • Restart your router.
  • Restart phone.
  • Navigate to Settings > Apps > Play Store > Data usage and make sure Background Data is enabled.
  • Open Play Store and tap on the 3-line menu. Choose Settings and, under the App download preference, set Over any network and give it a try. Don’t forget to disable it later on to avoid data charges.
  • Reset Network settings. Open Settings > Backup & reset > Network settings reset.

In case you still can’t find a solution for a potential network problem, you can get a better insight in our article covering Wi-Fi issues on Android. We also have one addressing general Mobile Data issues on Android, too.

With that out on the table, let’s continue with the troubleshooting.

2. Clear Play Store data and cache

Just as any other Android app, the Play Store app collects data and cache to speed up the loading speeds and retain your searches. However, piling up data on local storage can eventually lead to some bugs and errors.

That’s why we need you to clear all data and cache from the Play Store. Don’t worry, it won’t change a thing.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Apps (Apps Manager).
  3. Open the Google Play Store.
  4. Choose Storage.
  5. Clear Data and Cache.
  6. Restart your device and open the Play Store.

This troubleshooting step usually sorts out most of Google Play Store issues. However, if the Store is persistent in claiming you’re not connected, move to the next step.

3. Reset Google Play Store

As you’re probably well aware, without flashing your phone, you won’t be able to uninstall pre-installed Google apps from your phone. This concerns Google Play Store and Play Services, especially.

What you can do, on the other hand, is reset it to default values. To a version that was pre-installed on your device at the time of production.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Apps (Apps Manager).
  3. Open the Google Play Store.
  4. Tap on the 3-dots menu and then Uninstall updates. It’ll ask you do you want to restore the app to factory values. Confirm you do and wait until everything is done.google play waiting for wi-fi
  5. Restart your handset and look for improvements.

4. Update Google Play Store to fix the Waiting for Wi-Fi error

This can be more than helpful, especially if only the current version of the Play Store app is giving you a hard time. With that said, there’s only one effective way to update Google Play Store with this error at hand.

And, for better or worse, it requires sideloading an up from the third-party source. The source is APKMirror, which is a safe and secure way to install official app releases. Don’t worry, installing APK files is perfectly safe, as long as you get it from a reliable source like APKMirror.

Here’s how to update Google Play Store with a third-party APK:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Choose Security.
  3. Enable “Unknown sources“. This will allow you to install non-store apps.
  4. Navigate to APK Mirror with your on-phone browser.
  5. Download the latest version of the Play Store to your device.
  6. Open it and install APK.
  7. Restart your device and check whether the “Google Play is waiting for Wi-Fi” error is re-appearing.

Also, navigate to Settings > Security > Google Play System update and ensure that the latest patch is installed.

5. Reset Google Play Services

Google Play Services is a vital part of every Android device. It grows larger over time, and the more apps you have the larger it’ll get. It mostly unifies all accounts and apps you’ve used those accounts to log into. This goes for the Play Store app, as well.

So, we suggest resetting Google Play Services. There are no drawbacks, except you might need to establish certain accounts for some third-party apps. Also, don’t expect its size will reduce substantially.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Choose Apps (Apps Manager).
  3. Open Google Play Services.
  4. Choose Storage > Manage storage.
  5. Open Manage space.
  6. Clear all Data.google play waiting for wi-fi
  7. Get back to the app info screen and tap on the 3-dots menu.
  8. Uninstall updates from Google Play Services and restart your device.google play waiting for wi-fi

If you still get the Google Play waiting for a Wi-Fi error when trying to update or download apps, try updating the firmware.

6. Update your firmware

Finally, the only remaining thing we can recommend is updating your firmware. Some Xiaomi users reported that updating the OS helped in this matter. Afterward, they were able to access the Play Store without any errors.

Here’s how to update your OS:

  1. Choose Settings.
  2. Open System.
  3. Select Software update.
  4. Tap Check for updates.google play waiting for wi-fi
  5. If there’s an update available, install it.

With that said, we can wrap it up. Don’t shy away from sharing your thoughts on this particular Play Store error, especially some alternative solutions we overlooked. The comments section is just below.

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in November 2019. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy.


FAQ

Clearing the Play Store cache deletes all the temporary data the app has stored on your device. But it won't reset the app, so your login details, installed apps, and settings will remain in place.

If you've solved the problem with "Google Play waiting for Wi-Fi", you can delete the APK version, and switch to the original app. If you're not sure how to delete the Google Play APK, check out our article about uninstalling APK files on Android.

Picture of Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Aleksandar Ognjanovic

Managing editor at Mobile Internist. @lemmingspain My fascination with mobile technology, particularly Android and iOS, began years ago and continues today. I'm captivated by the constant evolution in the smartphone industry and its impact on our daily lives, always anticipating the next big innovation. That’s the main reason why I found myself writing instructive content on the subject for users who are not as familiar with all the bells and whistles.
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