Phone Not Showing up on PC: How to Recognize it by Force

This issue affects both Android and iPhone devices

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Key notes

  • The problem usually arises due to incorrect data transfer mode.
  • To fix things, replace the cable, update the drivers, or enable USB debugging.
fix it when phone is not connecting to the pc

Many of us regularly connect an Android phone to the PC to transfer data, however, users reported that their phone is not showing up on the PC.

This will make file transfer impossible, but there are several ways to fix this problem, so let’s take a closer look.

Why is my phone not showing up on my PC?

Connection problems or outdated software or drivers are the most common cause. Using the wrong transfer mode can also cause this issue.

How do I make my phone visible on my computer?

Before we try other solutions, be sure to unlock the phone before connecting it. Also, remove any USB hubs that you have and connect the phone directly. You can also try using a different cable or a USB port.

1. Check USB computer connection settings

  1. After you connect the phone, a notification will appear confirming whether you want to allow the connected device to access data on it. Simply tap Allow.allow
  2. If you don’t receive it, check the notifications bar, and tap on USB for file transfer, or any similar entry there.USB for file transfer
  3. Now, make sure This phone option is selected under USB controlled by, and Transferring files under Use USB for.transferring files

2. Install the MTP USB device driver

2.1 Update the driver manually

  1. Press Windows + X to open the Power User menu, and select Device Manager.device manager
  2. Locate your Android phone under Portable Devices, right-click it, and choose Update driver.update driver to fix phone not connecting to pc
  3. Click Browse my computer for drivers.browse my computer for drivers
  4. Now click on Let me pick from a list of available drivers on my computer.manually install drivers to fix phone not connecting to pc
  5. From the list, choose MTP USB Device and click Next.mtp usb device
  6. After the driver has been installed, your Android device should be recognized.

2.2 Update drivers automatically

Downloading drivers manually is a process that carries the risk of getting the wrong driver installed, which may lead to severe malfunctions in your  PC. Thus, we recommend an alternative tool that will do it for you.

The safer and easier way to update drivers on a Windows computer is by using an automatic tool recommended below that will fix and update them automatically in just a few seconds.

Often, your computer system might not be able to update the generic drivers for your hardware and peripherals correctly. There are vital differences between a generic driver and a manufacturer’s driver. Finding the correct driver versions for every hardware component can become tiresome.That’s why a dependable updater can help you find and update your drivers automatically. We strongly suggest the Outbyte Driver Updater, and here’s how to do it:
  1. Download and install the Outbyte Driver Updater app.
  2. Launch the software and wait for the app to detect all incompatible drivers.
  3. Now, it will show you a list of all outdated drivers to select the ones to Update or Ignore.
    OutByte Driver Updater Scan
  4. Click on Update & Apply Selected to download and install the latest versions.
  5. Restart your PC to ensure the applied changes.
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3. Download and install Media Feature Pack for Windows 10

MTP protocol is related to Windows Media Player, and some versions of Windows 10 don’t have Windows Media Player and support for related technologies such as MTP protocol.

If your version of Windows 10 doesn’t recognize Android devices, download and install the Media Feature Pack for N and KN versions of Windows 10. Once done, things should work as expected!

4. Uninstall the Android device’s driver

  1. Press Windows + R to open Run, type devmgmt.msc in the text field, and hit Enter.device manager
  2. Locate the phone under Portable Devices, right-click on the device, and then choose Uninstall device.uninstall device to fix phone not connecting to pc
  3. Click Uninstall in the confirmation prompt that appears.uninstall to fix phone not connecting to pc
  4. Once done, remove the phone and then reconnect it to the PC.
  5. Windows will now automatically identify and install the best drivers for it.

5. Enable USB debugging

  1. Open Settings on your Android device, and tap on About phone.about phone
  2. Now, tap on Software information.software information
  3. Now, tap seven times on Build number.build number to fix phone not connecting to pc
  4. If required, enter the phone’s pin to enable developer mode.
  5. Again, go back to Settings, and then tap on Developer options.developer options to fix phone not connecting to pc
  6. Enable the toggle for USB debugging.usb debugging to fix phone not connecting to pc
  7. Tap OK in the confirmation prompt.ok

6. Delete cache and data for the External Storage and Media Storage app

  1. Open Settings and go to Apps.apps
  2. Tap the ellipsis near the top-right corner.ellipsis
  3. Choose Show system apps.show system apps to fix phone not connecting to pc
  4. Tap on External Storage.external storage
  5. Now, tap on Storage.storage
  6. Next, tap on Clear data.clear data to fix phone not connecting to pc
  7. Choose OK to confirm.confirm
  8. Similarly, clear the data for Media Storage.
  9. Once done, restart the phone and then reconnect it to the PC.

7. Use a third-party app

This is not the Holy Grail, but for some users, it worked. You install a sync app that might make your PC recognize your phone due to its functionalities.

We would recommend the following tool to make sure your PC will always recognize your Android device:

Get WonderShare MobileGo

These are some of the best apps on the market. They synchronize and transfer data from both Android and IOS to PC. Download them and try to sync your phone with your computer.

Why is Android File Transfer not working?

Android Data Transfer is a Mac app that helps you transfer files between Mac and Android devices.

If the Android File Transfer is not working or gets disconnected often, ensure that the File Transfer feature is enabled on your Android device. You will find it in the USB Preferences within Settings.

Another problem could be an incorrect connection or a damaged cable. It’s recommended that you use the cable that came with your phone. If you notice any damage to the cable, replace it.

That’s it! If the phone was not connecting to the PC, it would now, and you can quickly transfer data between the two devices.

We also have specific guides if Windows 11 does not recognize Android phones and one for Windows 11 not recognizing iPhone.

Tell us which fix worked for you in the comments section below. Also, if you have any other queries, drop them here, and we will get back to you soon.

More about the topics: Android issues, Device Connection Error