Article ID : SX238802 / Last Modified : 03/22/2021

The screen doesn't turn off during a call when you hold the phone close to your face

    Your device has a sensor that detects proximity. The proximity sensor turns off the touch screen during voice calls when your ear is close to the screen. This prevents you from unintentionally activating other functions on your device when you are engaged in a call. The proximity sensor is located on the upper front part of the phone (above the display). The time needed for the sensor to turn on or off the display before or after a call is fixed. It can take up to a few seconds for the display to turn on or off.

    The proximity sensor may not work as intended in the following cases:

    • You may have forgotten to remove the temporary transparent protection film that covers the touchscreen when you first buy it. This film is only designed to protect the screen during shipping and is easy to peel off. Often you recognize it by its protruding tab.

    • If your device has a screen protection film, make sure it's specifically intended for your Xperia™ model. It is important that such a protective film has holes for the proximity sensor and the front camera in the correct positions.

    • Make sure the proximity sensor is clean, many problems with the proximity sensor may be solved by cleaning it.

    • If you use a case or cover which is not well suited to the phone, it may impact the functionality of the proximity sensor. The case may cover the sensor.

    • There may be other causes for the sensor not working as intended.

    Try these methods one after the other. Verify after each method whether the problem was solved, before trying the next one.

    • Make sure to remove the transparent film that covers the touchscreen when you first buy it. This film typically has a protruding tab.

      Note: Don't remove the thin ASF (anti-shatter film) if your device has one. It is fitted to protect against scratches.

    • Check that any protective film that your device uses (not the factory-fitted thin anti-shatter film), has the holes for the proximity sensor and the front camera in the correct positions. The sensor is placed at the top of the device above the screen. To verify the exact location of the proximity sensor for your Xperia model, refer to the User Guide. You can view an illustration of the device and the main hardware parts in the Getting started chapter under Overview. If you can't verify that the protection film is correctly fitted, remove it, but do not remove the factory-fitted thin anti-shatter film if your device has one.

    • Clean the proximity sensor.

    • Remove any case or cover you use with your phone.

    • Force the phone to restart.

    • Test the proximity sensor in your phone.

    • Make sure your device is fully charged. Then perform a system software update, if any is available.

    • Back up any important data saved on your device, then perform a factory data reset.

    • Contact the original vendor or contact us. If you need to hand in your device for service, back up all the data you want to keep. Data on the device is deleted when examined. Also, remove all Google accounts you have on your device, before handing it in. Don't forget to supply proper documentation, for example, proof of purchase and warranty card. The documentation required may vary depending on market, country, or region.

    Note: If the following steps do not work or the proximity test gives a negative result, contact the service center nearest you. Please confirm if your device is accepted for repair.

    Detailed information

    Force the device to restart

    1. Press and hold down both the volume up key and the Power key until your device vibrates three times, then release the keys. The device turns off automatically.
    2. After the device is turned off, restart your device by pressing the power key.

    Test the proximity sensor

    Android 8.x

    1. Find and tap SettingsSystemAbout PhoneSupport. If this is the first time you start Support, tap ACCEPT to accept the privacy policy.
    2. On the Test tab, scroll down and tap Ear proximity, and follow the on-screen instructions.

    Android 6.0, 7.0, 7.1 or 7.1.1

    1. From your Home screen, tap the Application screen icon.
    2. Find and tap SettingsAbout PhoneSupport. If this is the first time you start Support, tap ACCEPT to accept the privacy policy.
    3. On the Test tab, scroll down and tap Ear proximity, and follow the on-screen instructions.

    Android 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 5.0 or 5.1

    1. From your Home screen, tap the Application screen icon.
    2. Find and tap SettingsAbout PhoneDiagnostics.
    3. Tap Test deviceEar proximity, and follow the on-screen instructions.

    Updating the system software

    The easiest way to install a software update is to do it wirelessly from your device. However, some updates are not available for wireless download. In such cases, you must then check for new software using a USB cable and a computer running Xperia™ Companion.

    Updating wirelessly

    Android 8.x

    1. If you are sharing a device with multiple users, make sure you are logged in as the owner.
    2. Find and tap SettingsSystemSoftware update.
    3. If a system update is available, tap Download to download it to your device.
    4. When the download is finished, tap Continue, and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation.

    Android 7.1.1 or lower

    1. If you are sharing a device with multiple users, make sure you are logged in as the owner.
    2. From your Home screen, tap the Application screen icon.
    3. Find and tap SettingsAbout phoneSoftware update.
    4. If a system update is available, tap Download to download it to your device.
    5. When the download is finished, tap Continue, and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation.

    Updating using a computer

    1. If not already installed, download and install the Xperia™ Companion application from the Xperia Companion page.
    2. Using a USB cable, connect your device to the computer.
    3. Xperia device: If prompted, in the Use USB for dialog, tap Transfer files (MTP).
    4. Open Xperia Companion, if it is not automatically launched.
    5. Computer: If a new software update is detected, a popup window appears. Follow the on-screen instructions to run the relevant software update.

    Perform a factory data reset

    Android 8.x

    1. Make a backup of any personal content that you want to keep and that is stored on the internal memory of your device. Photos, videos, music, and other data stored on an external memory card do not get erased.
    2. Make sure you know your Google™ account username and password.
      Note: Depending on your security settings, you may need to enter the Google account credentials you use on your Xperia device to be able to use it after a factory data reset.
    3. Find and tap SettingsSystemResetFactory data reset.
    4. Tap RESET PHONE.
    5. If required, draw your screen unlock pattern or enter your screen unlock password or PIN to continue.
    6. To confirm, tap ERASE EVERYTHING.

    Android 5.0, 5.1, 6.0, 7.0, 7.1 or 7.1.1

    1. Make a backup of any personal content that you want to keep and that is stored on the internal memory of your device. Photos, videos, music, and other data stored on an external memory card do not get erased.
    2. Make sure you know your Google account username and password.
      Note: Depending on your security settings, you may need to enter the Google account credentials you use on your Xperia device to be able to use it after a factory data reset.
    3. From your Home screen, tap the Application screen icon.
    4. Find and tap SettingsBackup & resetFactory data reset.
    5. Android 5.0/5.1: If you also want to erase data such as pictures and music, which is saved to your device's internal storage, mark the Erase internal storage checkbox (does not affect the SD card).
    6. Tap Reset phone/tablet or Erase everything.
    7. If required, draw your screen unlock pattern or enter your screen unlock password or PIN to continue.
    8. To confirm, tap Erase everything.

    Android 4.2, 4.3 or 4.4

    1. Make a backup of any personal content that you want to keep and that is stored on the internal memory of your device.
    2. From your Home screen, tap the Application screen icon.
    3. Find and tap SettingsBackup & resetFactory data reset.
    4. If you also want to erase data such as pictures and music, which is saved to your device's internal storage, mark the Erase internal storage checkbox (does not affect the SD card).
    5. Tap Reset phone/tablet.
    6. To confirm, tap Erase everything.