Fix: Unable to access camera in Instagram Android app

Instagram without its app isn’t Instagram that we know. And, even though the features are piling up, there are some issues that can’t be overlooked.

We talked about videos playback issue, on both iOS and Android, and today we’ll try and address a preposterous problem that has evoked lately. Namely, some users reported that they were unable to access a camera trough the app. That’s quite a problem since it renders the app, more or less, unusable. You can’t use any of the filters or tools within the app without a camera integration. And that’s somewhat, and you’ll agree, the main purpose of the app.

For that reason, we prepared some of the common solutions for this issue. You can find the complete list below.

Check the permissions

The first step you should take is check for permission changes. As you’re probably aware of, every app needs certain permissions to access your camera, storage, contacts etc. Most of the time, these permissions are auto-enabled once you download and install the app from the Play Store. You agreed to them in order to use app’s features completely. However, things may change if you update your firmware or run some of the administrative tools. Those can restrict some features due to security limitations.

For that reason, it’s worth to check active permissions in the Instagram app:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Apps.
  3. Navigate to the Instagram app.
  4. Open Permissions.
  5. Make sure that the Camera is toggled on.

If you’re still unable to open camera within the app, check the steps below.

Clear app’s cache and data

With frequent Instagram updates that are emerging nowadays, regarding Story improvements and those silly face filters, there’s a chance that something may go wrong. Namely, this app tends to accumulate temporary files and, since it’s changing on almost daily basis, those can affect the overall performance or some features, like a camera.

So, make sure to clean apps cache or data and look for changes:

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Open Apps (Applications).
  3. Tap Instagram and open Storage.
  4. Clear Cache and Data.
  5. Restart your device.
  6. Open Instagram (you may need to log in again).
  7. Try accessing the camera by swiping left.

If the problem is persistent and mini nervous breakdown is ascending, there are some other steps worth checking.

Update the Instagram app

We already mentioned frequent updates. The app is nowadays so feature-rich that it’s almost chaotic. But, while it’s cool to have all of those features, it’s still more important to have the elementary functions working. What to do with the Instagram Boomerang or face filters or other effects if you’re unable to access a camera in the first place.

What we can hope for is that one of those updates may address this issue. That’s good enough reason to fly over to the Play Store and check for updates immediately.

  1. Open the Play Store app.
  2. Open Menu.
  3. Choose My Apps & Games.
  4. Look up for Instagram in the Updates tab.
  5. If the update is available, choose to update.
  6. Restart your handset and look for changes.

Hopefully, this should be enough to resolve your problem. However, if it’s still there, take these additional steps into account.

Reinstall the Instagram app

Reinstallation is somewhat obsolete, but it can help you sometimes. Android is the OS just like so many others, and where is software there’s a room for issues. This is especially the case with the firmware updates, like latest Nougat, that affected certain handsets in a lot of negative ways. So, make sure to, after the firmware update, clean reinstall troublesome apps.

Follow these steps to reinstall the Instagram app:

  1. Tap and hold Instagram app under the App list.
  2. Draw it to the top and Uninstall it.
  3. Restart your device.
  4. Open Play Store app.
  5. Look up for Instagram.
  6. Install app.
  7. Try accessing the camera.

That should be enough to resolve most of the app-related issues. But, what if the Instagram app isn’t the problem in the first place?

Update the firmware

Yes, we said that the system updates, besides the improvements in different sectors, often bear more than a few issues. But, some OEMs that are professional and responsible, tend to offer a resolution for previously made slips. So, there’s a chance that your next system update may fix this bug that restricts your camera in the Instagram app.

Make sure to check for the updates and install them timely.

Use exclusively a native camera app

Firstly, we are assuming that you’re using native camera app instead of some 3rd-party solutions. Those are known for failed integration with other apps, meaning: sometimes they just won’t work within other apps, like Instagram, WhatsApp or Viber. So, make sure that your native camera is set as a default. You can look into that by following these instructions:

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Navigate to Apps.
  3. Under Apps, open Settings.
  4. Open Default Apps settings.
  5. Tap Camera.
  6. Make sure that the native camera is set as the default.

Now, once we’re over that and if the problem with the Instagram is still there, we’re afraid that there are only two things you can do. At least, as we’re aware.

Wipe cache partition data

There’s a chance that your camera is the problem, in the first place. Or it’s system integration. Some users managed to resolve a multitude of camera-related issues by the clearing cache partition data. This won’t affect your data, so you shouldn’t lose any of your apps, settings or multimedia. Also, have in mind that the procedure may differ, so make sure to google the steps for your device.

This is how to run this recovery procedure:

  1. Make sure your device battery is at least at 20% and Turn Off the device.
  2. Press and hold the combination of Volume Up, Home, and Power Keys.
  3. Wait until the Android System Recovery screen appears and release all keys.
  4. Use the Volume Down key to navigate to ”Wipe cache partition”.
  5. Select ”Wipe cache partition” with the Power button.
  6. Use the Volume Down key to highlight ‘Yes’ and press the Power button to confirm.
  7. After the procedure is finished, confirm ‘Reboot system now’ with the Power button.

Reset device to factory settings

If everything that we presented until now fell short, there’s a chance that the factory reset is the only solution. We advise you, as always, to backup your data before starting with anything as terminal as this. In addition, prepare for a long time of customizing your settings and preferences. You can do it by following these steps:

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Open Backup & Restore.
  3. Choose Factory Data Reset.
  4. Tap Reset Device.
  5. Choose Erase Everything.
  6. Confirm selection and insert your passcode or PIN.
  7. The process should take about 5-10 minutes.

After that, your Instagram app should be, finally, able to access camera so you can snap those selfies just like before.

In addition, don’t forget to share questions or alternative solutions in the comments. We’ll be grateful.


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Same prblm i do face plz help

Shruti Jajoo
Shruti Jajoo

yeah exactly.
Camera isn’t working during the video call otherwise it’s fine.

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