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WhatsApp calls not ringing on Android? Top 6 solutions

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Arguably, the best extra purpose of modern instant messengers are VoIP calls and Video calls. Nonetheless, the fact that WhatsApp is a third-party app might cause issues, as some users report WhatsApp calls not ringing for them.

WhatsApp was one of the first third-party platforms that brought this free and nifty functionality and now lots of people use it as their go-to service for calls. Not exactly of use if it doesn’t notify you about an incoming call.

There are multiple reasons why WhatsApp is not ringing for some users. The problem usually occurs due to faulty settings, concerning notifications, or ringing tones. Alternatively, it tends to be connected to system optimization applications that prevent WhatsApp from working in the background.

If you are stuck and clueless about how to address this issue, make sure to check the steps below.

Why is WhatsApp not ringing on Android?

If your WhatsApp is not ringing, you can fix it by:

  • Disabling Do Not Disturb and silent modes on your Android phone.
  • Enabling WhatsApp notifications and allowing necessary permissions. Allow WhatsApp to use Mobile data in Settings > Apps > WhatsApp > Mobile Data.
  • Changing the default ringtone.
  • Disabling Battery optimization so WhatsApp can work in the background.
  • Resetting or reinstalling the app.

1. Check Notification and Permission settings

Let’s start by inspecting System Notification settings and permissions. Chances are Call notifications are either completely disabled or not permitted on the lock screen. So, let’s inspect the Notification settings for WhatsApp and ensure that the device will ring the next time you receive a call.

Here’s how to allow Call Notifications for WhatsApp:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Choose Apps (App Manager or Manage Apps).
  3. Choose WhatsApp from the app list.
  4. Select Notifications.
  5. Firstly, make sure that Show notifications and Lock screen notifications are enabled.
  6. After that, scroll down and open Call notifications.
  7. Enable Show notifications, set Importance to High, set Ringtone to None (it will use the default ringtone that way), and, finally, ensure that Notifications are allowed on the lock screen.whatsapp not ringing

Additionally, you can check out our article about managing permissions on Android for more info.

2. Use a default system ringtone

Instead of using its ringtone like some other instant messengers, WhatsApp uses the system-set ringtone by default. Of course, there’s an option to change WhatsApp ringtone and that’s where the issue might occur.

Namely, if you set a custom ringtone and the audio file gets deleted or moved, WhatsApp should switch to a system ringtone automatically. Except it doesn’t do that always.

To resolve this, you should switch from a local ringtone to a default one. Any of the pre-installed system sounds will do. Follow the instructions in the first solution and either set the WhatsApp ringtone to None or choose some other system sound.

3. Disable System and Battery optimization for WhatsApp

The main downside of OEM Android skins (besides the bloatware, obviously) are those pesky, aggressive managers that will kill apps and prevent them from working in the background.

In addition, battery optimization, although a default way to prolong battery life, might prevent WhatsApp from working, especially on Huawei’s EMUI. That’s why we recommend disabling Battery optimization and whitelisting WhatsApp in System Manager. You can do that in the Settings app, under Apps > WhatsApp > Battery. Alternatively, you can lock WhatsApp in RAM from the Recents screen. Look for the padlock icon.

4. Clear cache and data to fix WhatsApp calls not ringing

If WhatsApp is not ringing even after you’ve followed the aforementioned troubleshooting steps, try clearing data and cache from the app. After clearing the cache and data, you’ll need to reinsert your phone number to sign in again.

Follow these instructions to clear the cache and data from WhatsApp:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Choose Apps.
  3. Open Manage apps.
  4. Locate and open WhatsApp.
  5. Tap Storage.
  6. Clear the Cache and then Data and reboot your device.whatsapp calls not ringing

5. Reinstall WhatsApp

Finally, if none of the previous solutions worked, we recommend reinstalling the app and trying again. Many users managed to address the problem by reinstalling WhatsApp.

Follow these instructions to reinstall WhatsApp via the Play Store:

  1. Open Play Store and navigate to WhatsApp. whatsapp calls not ringing
  2. Uninstall the app.
  3. Install the app again and reboot your device.
  4. Log in again and check for improvements.

6. Rollback WhatsApp with an APK

We covered the subject of sideloading APKs extensively, in our articles about the safety of APKs on Android and installing apps from Unknown Sources. So if you want to learn more, make sure to check them out. Basically, in this case, we want to get rid of the official release and get an older version of WhatsApp that probably doesn’t have an overlying issue.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Navigate to APKMirror and download an older APK version of WhatsApp. Alternatively, you can try any other version except the one currently installed on your device. Beta versions are also an option but we suggest avoiding them due to stability issues.
  2. Uninstall the app by following the instructions from the previous solution.
  3. Run the APL and allow app installation from external sources.
  4. Open WhatsApp, sign in, and look for improvements.

That’s a wrap. Thanks for reading and we sincerely hope any of these steps helped you. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to tell us in the comments section below. We look forward to hearing from you.

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

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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