It’s been a tough couple of days for Android users. Starting late on Monday evening, a bug caused Android apps to crash immediately. Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Microsoft Outlook, Google’s own search widget, BBC Weather, Amazon and dozens of other apps were hit by the glitch. Google Pixels, OnePlus, Samsung … almost all Android phone brands were affected by the bug. Google announced a fix the following day (March 23), but some users are still having issues with the glitch.
If you can’t download the latest version of Google Chrome and the Android WebView system from the Play Store – as Google recommends fixing the issues – here’s a quick fix to try and get everything on your computer up and running bring device again.
As mentioned above, the key to preventing Android apps from crashing is to update to the newly patched versions of Google Chrome and Android System WebView that Google sent to the Play Store. In some cases, however, tapping the Update button next to those versions will not prevent you from being able to install the patch.
If this happens on your device, please follow the steps below.
- Open the Settings app on your phone.
- Tap Apps & notifications> Google Play Store> Storage & Cache> Clear Data
According to Google, only a handful of Android 10 or Android 11 users need to add these extra steps. The Mountain View-based company has also warned that the above steps will erase Google Play Store settings such as parental controls and auto-update settings. So whenever you try to get a shared tablet or phone to work, remember to go back to your settings and set the age limits again as they have been deleted.
Next, you need to follow the same steps as everyone else
- Open the Play Store app on the smartphone or tablet that is having the problem
- Look for “Android System WebView”
- Choose Update. If you don’t see “Update”, skip this step
- Search the Play Store for “Google Chrome”.
- Choose Update
You don’t need to understand exactly how Android System WebView works to fix the app crashing issues. In short, this is the core of the Android operating system which supports a number of apps and third-party apps developed by Google. “Android System WebView” is linked to Chrome and enables Android apps to display content from the web.
Because of this, both Android System WebView and Google Chrome need to be updated to fix the problem.
Since the problem is caused by this core system component, deleting and then reinstalling the crashing apps – whether Microsoft Outlook, Amazon, Gmail, Yahoo Mail or whatever – cannot fix the problem either.