How to Unlock Your Tablet: Tips and Tricks for Quick Access
When you have a device like a tablet or smartphone it easily accumulates a lot of personal information. You may have banking apps, sensitive documents or other personal information stored on your device.
If you lock your tablet with a pattern or pin code it really helps to keep your information safe and secure. The problem comes in when you start to keep yourself out of your own tablet.
Luckily we have a few tips and tricks to help you to unlock your tablet if you have forgotten your pin code or pattern.
Remember that most devices will lock you out after 5 incorrect attempts, so be sure to have a recovery email account up to date. If you don’t have a recovery email set up, it can take more drastic measures to unlock your device.
Although there are a few quick ways to unlock a tablet, the steps will depend on which device you have, on what version of your OS (operating system) you are and how you set up your security when you first started using your tablet.
So first lets cover the Android unlock process. If you have device that used Android 4.4 or earlier there is a built in bypass. With newer versions of Android (5.1) and newer, there has been changes and this is no longer included.
First, for older Android devices, you need to be connected to a Wi-Fi (wireless) network. You should get an option after 5 incorrect attempts to tap on a ‘forgot password/pin or pattern’ button. If you do not see this after five attempts your device may not support this method.
If it does, you can go on to enter your Google email and password. This should be the same email you use when you sign into your device. You can then tap sign in.
You may need another device to access your email address. You can then log into your email account from another device, like a smartphone or laptop. You should receive a recovery email or you can go into your device manager via Google.
A recovery email will contain a link that will take you to a change password screen, you will receive a temporary code. Now you can try to unlock your device with the new code.
Now, let’s take a look at newer Android devices. Android has really increased its security, but this means it will be more difficult to unlock your tablet if you locked yourself out.
If you power your device off, turn it on again, and try to enter the correct pin or pattern and you still have no response you will need to have an account that you set up prior to the lockout.
For Samsung devices that will mean you will be able to use their site to remotely unlock your tablet. If you do not have a Samsung device, paid software may be your only option to access your device without losing data.
For Samsung users
If you have a Samsung device you can regain access by using your Samsung account. You will need to open your web browser on a different device. You can then go to the Find my Mobile site. You can the log in using the email you selected for your Samsung account.
The site will then give you step by step instructions to unlock your Samsung device. First, you click on unlock my screen. Then, unlock. It may take a few minutes for your locket tablet to update and unlock. Unfortunately, if you do not have a Samsung account, you won’t be able to use this method.
Different software options
There are third party software options available that can unlock your phone. There are several options but you will need to pay for the service and not all devices may be supported.
When all else fails
This is not the most desired method to gain access to your tablet, but can be used as a last resort. You can perform a factory or hard reset. This is usually your only option if you have forgotten your pin and you don’t have access to your recovery email.
When you choose this method, remember that it will delete all your apps except for the factory standard ones. You will also lose data that has not been stored to a cloud service or other external device.
Your first step for a factory reset is to turn off your device. The next step is to press and hold a combination of buttons. You will need to press and keep pressing the volume down button, the power button, and the camera button. If you do not have a separate camera button only use power and volume down buttons.
Your tablet should now power up, once it has, you can release the buttons. You will see a standard screen with text stating Android Recovery. There will be a few different options. You will need to scroll by using your volume up or down buttons. Scroll to the factory reset/wipe data option.
You will then see a screen that asks you to confirm that you want to use this option and delete your data. You will need to scroll to the yes option.
You will now be back at the main screen, scroll to the reboot system now, option. This will now delete all your data that has not been backed up prior to the lockout.
After the reboot, your device will allow you to access it. It will however need you to sign in again and set up all your accounts. It will be like it was when you first took it out of its box.
Prevention is better than cure
After you have gained access to your tablet again, it might be good to change your pattern or pin to something that you can remember more easily.
Also check that your recovery email and passwords for that specific email account are up to date. Set up automatic backup services for your data so you will have access to your data after a hard reset.
Remember that your device has a pin or pattern to protect your data if your device is ever stolen. If you have really locked yourself out, without any other recovery options like a recovery email, it can be almost impossible to access your device without losing data.
Hopefully you won’t need to go that far, so remember to choose a pattern that makes sense to you or a pin that you can remember well.