How do I fix Alcatel ONETOUCH Fierce XL (Windows 10) from freezing?


    My wife has an Alcatel ONETOUCH Fierce XL with Windows 10 and it keeps freezing or going blank. It normally does this anytime we go to play a video. It might play a video through, but on some it just goes black and just keeps playing the audio part of the video along with the sounds of any notifications. When this happens we can't do anything to it to get the screen back on except to hard re-start it by holding down all the buttons. She's only had this phone a couple of months since her Lumia 925 broke. Any ideas on how to fix this or what to do? Is this likely a phone problem or an operation system problem?


    My Nokia 925 with Windows 8.1 works flawlessly. But I'm getting messages from some apps that I'll also need to update soon to Windows 10 in order to keep the apps updated. But the Nokia Lumia 925 won't get the Windows 10 update. So it looks like my only option on T-Mobile is the Alcatel for myself, just like my wife. But I don't want to get one if there's no way of fixing this. We really don't want to get AppleID or Google accounts when all our apps, paid for and not, are already on Microsoft.


    Help! and thanks!

      All replies

      • mr_l84

        Is it possible to just send it back?

        • ulyssesghost

          Wait to replace the 925 and do not get the Fierce XL.  Too many corners were cut on this phone from the lack of an oleophobic coating on the screen (feels wierd and a smudge magnet) to the internals.


          There are two windows phones likely coming to tmo soon.  One is the Alcatel Idol 4 Pro and the other is the Lumia 650. Either would be significantly better than the Fierce XL.  Just wait you will be happy you did.


          Othewise, if you switch to android,it is not as difficult as you think even if you only use Microsoft services.  All my contacts are on my account, as is my email, onedrive, word, etc.  There are apps for all of those in android, and once you set up the app OR use the phone's native email app, you can link your contacts, etc.  It works seemlessly and without problem.  I even use the Microsoft arrow launcher and Next Lock screen, both of which make the experience on android better for me.  Cortana is even on android and with the exception of reading me my txts, works very similar to on Windows phone (and keeps getting better all the time except for the "Hey Cortana" feature.   Not trying to sell you on android, just letting you know that you can switch over from Windows phone and all your MS contacts and services will work.  Good luck in either case!

            • mr_l84

              Thanks! I'll try the hard reset in my wife's phone. I'll also wait on mine. I hope the Surface Phone becomes available on T-Mobile. I almost bought the 950XL, but also have a need for Wi-Fi calling.


              The only drawback I have with going to Android is then I'd have to buy certain apps all over again. I don't think I can get my money back for them on Windows Store.

                • ulyssesghost

                  Yes, having to re-buy apps is a pain and one reason that once you get into an eco-system like windows or android, it is hard to switch.  I would love to go back to windows phone, and am waiting for the lumia 650 if they release it on t-mo because like you, I have to have the wi-fi calling.   Tmonews was reporting that the Alcatel Idol 4 Pro was going to be picked up by t-mo and if so, that would be a much better device than the Fierce xl. 


                  Did the factory reset fix the problem on your phone?

                    • mr_l84

                      ok. So it's been several weeks since the factory reset and it still freezes up. I've noticed it now with other apps. It just does not seem to be able to handle much processing before it goes berzerk. I have noticed that sometimes if we wait long enough it unfreezes, but sometimes after several minutes, perhaps as long as 15 minutes.

                        • tmo_mike_c

                          Sorry it's still giving you grief, but thanks for keeping us posted. After you master reset, did you test the phone without any 3rd party apps? Since it's been a few weeks, I'm just curious if you noticed immediately after restting or over time. Thanks.

                            • mr_l84

                              well, we didn't notice anything right away. So maybe over time. On the other hand it's my wife's phone and she just tells me when it's not working and doesn't think to test it right after we try to fix it. So it could have started right after but she didn't try to use it much to see if it was still freezing until recently.


                              The phone restarted on her account and therefore installed and restored her third party apps automatically. But it freezes and goes black during calls, on the preinstalled Edge browser and on third party apps like WhatsApp. It just goes black and there's no way to do anything, although you can keep talking if you're on a call or keep listening to music or videos although you can't see the video. But the buttons and screen don't do anything.

                                • tmo_mike_c

                                  Hmm. Okay. I'd still like to see if she's able to keep 3rd party apps off the phone and then retest. After the reset, was she prompted to sign into her Windows Live account? I'm pretty sure her apps came back after she signed in.

                                    • mr_l84

                                      I'm going to transfer my wife's data back over to her old phone (Lumia 925). That way I can play around and test the Alcatel a bit more. I'll let you know how it goes.

                                      • mr_l84

                                        Ok, so here's a BIG update.


                                        So I fully reset the phone once again. This time it has my account and I did not restore it nor have I yet added any apps.


                                        And so far I cannot get it to freeze up. It seems to be working just fine. I've tried videos both online (youtube and such) as well as a downloaded video and they worked perfectly. It was usually the videos that had the problems where it would freeze up and go black. I also noticed that it usually happened when the screen was turned so that it would change position. But now it has no problem. I can turn the phone with a video playing and it does not freeze. So it looks like the problem may be a third party app. (???)


                                        Besides the absence of any third party apps the phone is now in English. With my wife she kept it in Spanish, her main language. So that might have to do with the problem.


                                        Also, another thing that I had noticed: When it was still having freezing problems in my wife's possession she would try to copy info (like off the web or off of other apps) and try to paste the info in WhatsApp. Strangely it normally wouldn't work. She could cut and paste within WhatsApp, but not between it and other apps. Anyhow, I can't try this yet because I don't have WhatsApp installed.


                                        So, unless someone suggests something otherwise, I think I'll keep this phone for a while with no extra apps. If I don't get the problem again I'll try adding the same apps that my wife uses one by one and try it for a day or two and see if it starts acting up. I'll also try the Spanish mode and see if that's the problem.


                                        Thanks for all your help so far! Hopefully I can get this phone working! I just purchased a year of Office 365 for her and I and it says that it's main apps only work on Windows 10 Phones. There is also another app that we use that's now calling for Windows 10. The Nokia Lumia 925 is an awesome phone (RIP Nokia), but it's becoming antiquated already. Right now the Alcatel is the only T-Mobile Windows 10 phone available. And no, I'm not interested in Apple or Android. I hope T-Mobile will eventually offer the Lumia 950 or it's successor.

                                          • tmo_mike_c

                                            Thanks a bunch for keeping us updated. I know resetting isn't the most fun, but I'm glad you gave it a shot. Testing 3rd party apps one at a time is a good idea, so kudos to you for doing that out. I'm optimistic that the freezing isn't coming from every 3rd party app that's been installed. Hopefully it'll be isolated to just a few, so you can keep the ones that aren't problematic.


                                            When I had my MyTouch Slide back in the day, I got the same feeling it was becoming an antique after I got it. Man, I loved that phone, and I wish that Slide series continued. (I think it's because I was one of those folks that didn't want to give up my physical QWERTY keyboard ) So, I know how you feel and I'd like to offer a moment of silence for your Nokia....

                                              • mr_l84

                                                Well the problem appeared again. So I tried uninstalling a few apps that I had recently put on. But the problem continued. It seems to happen only when the phone is turned as usual. I'm guessing it's one of the first apps I put on there and only now it's the problem showing up. Now I'm wondering if I should keep deleting apps or restart the thing again and take more time per app, maybe a few days of testing, before installing another app. Or maybe it's time to give up and will just have to be careful not to turn the screen or to just lock it so that it won't turn and freeze.


                                                I've also noticed how much I miss the Nokia apps, especially for the camera. I knew my wife complained about the camera and now I know why. It also doesn't focus like the Lumias do. Oh well. But there are some things that are much better on the Windows 10 OS on this phone, like the Edge browser and expandable memory. This phone gives us a lot of mixed feelings.

                                                  • tmo_mike_c

                                                    Oh geez. Yeah, that's a tough call. It's generally a good idea to remove them all and start completely fresh. Taking more time before adding other apps back is a good idea. The app or apps may not immediately cause the phone to freeze so testing a little longer should show who the culprits are.


                                                    I hear ya about mixed feelings. I get that way too especially when I change phones. It's tough switching phones sometimes because features like the camera don't always function the same way. For what it's worth, it's good you've found some features you like.

                                                    • techguru30

                                                      It sound like it is a defective phone. If this were a software related issue I would expect more people complaining about the problem you are experiencing. I would contact T Mobile to see if they will send you a warranty replacement phone in the mail.