I've had two Android phone up til now (HTC Wildfire and SGS2). Sometimes they crashed and the only way to get them restart was to remove the battery. Now I'm thinking about buying a Sony Z1 Compact. Removing the battery is no longer something you can do without tools, and looking at youtube videos I think I will never do this.

Now I'm wondering - in those cases where a phone does not react anymore, how can you reboot the phone if you cannot remove the battery? Waiting until the batter is dead is one option, but that could take a day or longer, and is no option either. Or was I too impatient and is it just a matter of waiting?

In short: Is it always possible to reboot the phone without removing the battery?

There are many phones out there with a fixed battery, so I'm not the first with this problem. What are your experiences?

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    I'd check whether the device has a reset hole, which usually serves exact this purpose on devices with non-removable batteries. Had to apply that "fix" a few times on one of my tabbies already ;) – Izzy May 22 '14 at 8:52
  • Thanks @Izzy, you may make that an answer! See sony-xperia.mobi/eng/sony-xperia-z1-compact/… – SPRBRN May 22 '14 at 9:44

As pointed out by my other answer, and confirmed by the OP for the given device with reference to a blog article on the Z1, most devices with non-removable batteries have other means to "disconnect from power", usually "reset buttons" or "reset holes" to be poked with a pen or similar object. This should remedy in situations where the device freezes in a way not even the power button works. But it still leaves the disadvantage of not being able to "switch" the battery to a backup should you e.g. run out of power, of course.

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If the device freezes, usually you can long press the power button. Depending on the configuration of the device, it will either turn the device off completely (e.g. Nexus 7, HTC Butterfly S) or make the device do a restart.

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    Nexus 5 reboots after 10 sec, in case anyone was wondering how long "long" actually is. – Marc May 22 '14 at 13:36

The answer to your original question is no. Sometimes, if a device DOES have an easily removable battery, it will not have a hardware reset option.

You could build an Android device that had no other option to reset besides a battery pull. The manufacturer has to specifically build some form of external reset. If the software is completely locked up then it doesn't matter what options are built into the Android OS.

Usually, the manufacturer is smart enough to include a hard reset option if the battery is not easily removable. If you play the generic tablet lottery, however, you might be lucky enough to find one that didn't.

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