How to Fix the Screen Overlay Detected Error on Android

Screen overlay is an advanced feature used by android which enables any app to appear on top of other apps. Best screen overlay examples can be the chat head of facebook messenger, WhatsApp messenger, and clean master.

The benefit of using the screen overlays for chat head of facebook messenger will help you reply instantly while playing games. And using screen overlay for the clean master will instantly clean junk files and background process of applications to increase battery power without launching the clean master.


Screen overlay detected appears when a new app is installed on your android device or it may appear when you need to manually grant the permission (such allowing an app to record) to any application on your android device.

According to android terms and policies, you need to permit drawing over other apps of all the installed apps in the android device while accepting the permission. Whenever you install a new app in the device you need to accept certain permission (such as storage, record, contacts etc) and if active screen overlay of any application is observed then a sudden pop-up message will appear ‘screen overlay detected’. To change the permission settings, you have to turn off screen overlay from setting>apps.

Reasons behind the screen overlay detected:

  1. Screen overlay may appear because of the clean master app on your device. For a temporary solution, force stop the clean master app while you are installing a new app or while granting permission for the new app.
  2. Screen overlay detected may also appear because of some power consumption app. You can temporarily force stop the power consumption app.
  3. In addition to security apps, there are some boost performance apps, which can cause the pop up of screen overlay detected. Here also similar to the security apps, you need to force stop the app.

How to fix the error detected:

Step 1: Find out what apps have permission to draw over the screen.

Step 2: Check app permission. You will find the list of apps that have permission to use floating buttons or other overlay screens. Now you need to identify the problem app and temporarily deny its permission to draw over the screen.

Step 3: Now you can try launching the app again, it should request permission without ‘display overlay detected’ error getting in the way.

Step 4: In order for the apps that you have disabled in step two to work again, you need to re-enable to overlay permission. If you turned off all apps, you might consider reactivating only those app which you actually use.

Step 5: If the above steps don’t work for you, there are additional steps you can try to fix the issue. This requires you to use the ‘safe mode’ android feature to manage the app permission.

This method requires you to remember the apps which you are having issues with ( eg: Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp)

  • First press the power button
  • Press and hold the power off the option to pop up prompt
  • After holding for a few seconds another prompt pop up, asking you to enable safe mode.
  •  Choose OK and the device will reboot in safe mode
  • Once the device is turned ON, go to the setting and then to apps.
  • Now here, scroll down and find the app which had the problem of screen overlay, select it
  • On the app page select  permission,
  • On the permission page, enable all the permission the app was asking earlier
  • After this, reboot the device.

It’s rather a workaround, but it is the best we have until google makes any necessary changes to prevent the app overlays from interfering with permission dialogue. A newer version of android doesn’t appear to suffer from this problem, and it seems to be reported by the android marshmallow users.

Apps based solution: There are a couple of apps which addresses this issue. But because it involves downloading additional software and displaying ads, it is still recommended to first try the manual solution detailed above. Still, if it does not work, then you can try some of the apps available like ‘install button unlocker’ or ‘alert window checker’.


About the author


Mike is professional android and iOS developer, passionate about discussing latest trends in android space about new apps and tricks tips.

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