Android Q&As: Make Skype Video Call, Mass Convert Contacts, Disable WiFi Shut Down On Screen Lock And Many More…


In this week’s round of Android questions, we talk about why you sometimes get force close errors, how to video chat on Skype, managing contacts and Wi-Fi issues. Recently we have some questions about Android application coding, I’m sorry, but this is not something that we will be covering in this weekly column.

The Q&A

NOTE: Some of the questions will be rephrased and will not appear exactly as they were written in MTE’s inbox, for the sake of simplifying the question and giving as much space as possible to the answer. If you believe your answer was not adequately answered, go ahead and leave a comment at the bottom. We’ll get to you ASAP.

Q:Why do I get force close errors?

A:There are a couple of typical reasons you will get a Force Close Error on and Android. The first is the application is not compatible with your device or OS. While it may download and start, there may be something about your Android device the application doesn’t like.

The other option might be you have too many things running on your Android. If your phone needs the resources, it will close applications hogging memory. Many apps take a good chunk of computing power to open. A lot of new phones have a built in task manager which you could use to close down some running applications and see if the problem persists.

Q:When my screen blacks out, my Wi-Fi shuts off. How can I keep the Wi-Fi connected?

A:Some devices have what is known as a Wi-Fi sleep policy. I ran into this myself on the Motorola I use now. The setting is buried in the settings. Try to follow this path and see if yours has a similar setting: Menu -> Settings -> Wireless and networks -> Wi-Fi settings -> Menu -> Advanced -> Wi-Fi sleep policy. Change this setting to Never and that should cure your problem.


Q:How do I mass-convert all of my contacts to “phone-only”?

A:There really isn’t an easy way. If perhaps you are trying out a lot of different ROMs and don’t want to get your contacts intermingled with other apps, you could use a generic Gmail account to initially log in when you change the ROM. Then you can turn off the syncing right away when you add your normal Gmail address later.


Q:How do I make a video call through Skype?

A:The first thing you will need is a device with a front facing camera. Beyond that, there is an option to turn on the video chat option in the settings. The check box is near the bottom of the settings page. When you check or uncheck the box, you may need to restart Skype to have the change take effect.


Why Wasn’t My Question Answered?

If you asked a question and it wasn’t answered here, it could be one of three reasons:

  • Relevance: Your question needs to be totally relevant to the Android operating system.
  • Detail: Try to include as much detail as you can, such as the Android device and version of the Android OS you’re using.
  • Other Reasons: For some unfortunate reason, we couldn’t include your question in this edition. We’ll try our best effort to include the question in the next edition.

What’s your Android question?

If you have questions you think might fit well with MTE’s next edition of “Ask an Android Expert,” send us an email at android-help [at] Leave comments only to discuss the questions presented here. If you want to ask a question, use the aforementioned email address.

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