‘Pokemon Go’: How to Fix the Unable to Authenticate Error

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Pokemon Go unable to authenticate

NianticHow to fix the unable to authenticate error in Pokemon Go.

The “unable to authenticate” error has been a problem for Pokemon Go players since the game first began. But now trainers are encountering the error all over again and they aren’t sure how to fix it. Some players are also finding that their game is just stuck in a permanently loading loop instead of actually getting the error.

Here are some of the common reasons that trainers are encountering this error, and what you can do to fix it. If none of these work, you may need to contact Niantic Support.


A Few Quick Fixes to Try First

First, try a few basic steps if you encounter the authenticate error or a permanently loading screen. Make sure the Pokemon Go game is updated to the latest version. Make sure that your phone’s software is also updated to the latest version (such as making sure you have the latest version of iOS on your mobile device.)

Next, try restarting the game, as this is sometimes all it takes to make the game work. You can also try disabling and re-enabling your mobile device’s data a few times in the row, and turning WiFi and/or Airplane Mode off and on.

Clearing your phone’s cache might also fix the error. To clean your cache for iOS, delete the app, restart your phone, and reinstall the app. To clear the cache for Android, go to Settings, Applications/Manage Applications, Pokemon Go, Storage, Clear Cache (and, if you want everything wiped, choose the Clear Data option too.)

Sometimes one of these solutions is all it takes to fix the problem.


Pokemon Trainer Club Account Issues

Some players who are logging in with PTC accounts are experiencing this error quite a bit. If you’re logging in with a PTC account from iOS 9, you may not be able to fix the error unless you upgrade to iOS 10, according to Niantic. Niantic believes this error may now be fixed, but some people are still encountering the problem on iOS 9.

Some trainers using iOS 10 have also reported this problem. (See a Reddit thread here, where the issue was reported by a trainer using iPhone 7, iOS 10.3.2, and PTC.) One trainer said they encountered this problem because they needed to log out of the game entirely to accept the new TOS. Another said they sometimes encountered this issue when the network connection was running slow.

Every now and then, the PTC logins break when a new update or major change to the game is rolled out. If you’re checking this story after a new update, you might need to simply wait awhile and try again.

(Note: Some trainers with PTC accounts have reported that having Snorlax installed will also interfere with the login until it’s removed from their phone. This module is sometimes used for seeing hidden stats, but it’s also sometimes used by spoofers. Using the module might get you banned.)


Advice for Android Accounts Stuck Loading or Receiving the Error

Some Android players have reported that they’re stuck on a loading screen when they try to start Pokemon Go. According to Niantic, this is a commonly encountered problem and you should make sure you have the latest version of the game on your device. You should also make sure “that your phone has not restricted background data access for Google Play Services and Google Play Store.”

In the past, Android users who encountered this error might also be able to bypass it by removing Pokemon Go‘s permissions from their Google account setting and then reinstalling the app.

There were also a few times early on with the game when players encountered this error because they were logged in with the wrong Google account.  If you have your passwords saved, try deleting all your Google passwords to make sure you’re not automatically getting logged in with the wrong account.


You May Be Banned

Unfortunately, there’s still a chance that you might encounter this error if you were banned from Pokemon Go. But Niantic is also using other tactics on banned or flagged players, so it’s unclear how often this error is still being seen after a player is banned.

Accounts can be banned by Niantic because they broke the game’s Terms of Service. This may happen for doing things such as falsifying locations, using emulators, unofficial software, or accessing Pokemon GO backends through third-party software, according to Niantic. For example, they might have used a GPS spoofer or a bot to run the game while they weren’t actually using it.

Some players who have used these tactics have found themselves encountering this error, indicating they were banned. But more recently, other errors have been seen. The Verge reported in late May that some banned players could still play, but they were only seeing very basic, low-level Pokemon like Pidgeys. Others received a warning error that said Niantic had detected they were using unauthorized apps with their account. Since the new gym update was released, players have also reported seeing red slashes across their Pokemon, which indicates that Niantic thinks those Pokemon were caught using methods against TOS.

Players who think they were banned wrongfully can appeal it at Niantic’s page here.


Make Sure You’re Using a Compatible Device

You may also encounter this error if you’re using a device that isn’t compatible with Pokemon Go.

According to Niantic, compatible devices include:

Android

  • Android 4.4+
  • Preferred resolution of 720×1280 pixels (Not optimized for tablet)
  • Strong internet connection (Wi-Fi, 3G, or 4G)
  • GPS and Location Services

iOS

  • iPhone 5+
  • iOS 8+
  • Strong internet connection (Wi-Fi, 3G, or 4G)
  • GPS and Location Services

You’re Using a Rooted or Jailbroken Phone

Although there are ways to get around this, some trainers will encounter problems if they’re playing Pokemon Go from a rooted or jailbroken phone. Niantic’s official page says that Pokemon Go is not supported by devices that are rooted or jailbroken.

If you unroot your device, you may still encounter issues. Some trainers have noticed that they can avoid the error by using Magick Hide.

These are just a few of the reasons that might cause an unauthenticated error or a constantly loading screen to plague your attempts to use Pokemon Go. In the past, some players also encountered temporary issues related to their region, carrier, or IP. These issues were typically resolved within a few days. If you continue to have a problem and nothing is helping, try emailing Niantic at techhelp@pokemon.com. Include your email, login name, trainer name, and details on the issue you’re having.

Have you encountered this error and are finding that none of the above solutions are helping? Let us know in the comments below. If you’ve found a different solution that works, let us know about that too.