Isn’t it annoying when certain apps take over your phone brightness settings and change the brightness level on their own?
Many users complained that Netflix sometimes cranks up the brightness level on HDR Android devices. That’s not at all pleasant, especially when you’re watching Netflix with the lights off.
Perhaps the most frustrating part is that sometimes you can’t even use the slider to manually adjust the brightness level. Granted, such an unexpected app behavior feels really invasive.
Why Does the Brightness Level Change by Itself on Android?
To override your Android brightness settings, apps need permission to modify the existing system settings. They usually do that via a special API that you accept when installing the app. For example, the API often increases the screen brightness level to the maximum to make barcode and QR code reading easier.
So, if the brightness level goes up only when you’re displaying a barcode or QR code for scanning, there’s nothing wrong with your Android device.
Stop Apps from Changing the Brightness Level
Disable Smart Stay (Samsung)
The Smart Stay feature prevents the display from dimming or turning off as long as the front camera detects you’re looking at the screen.
Smart Stay may sometimes mistakenly detect that your eyes are moving and change the brightness level. Go to Settings → Display → Smart Stay and disable this feature. Check if the brightness level still changes on its own.
Disable Automatic Brightness Settings
By that, we mean Automatic Brightness, Adaptive Brightness, Power Saving Mode, Blue Light, and Night Light.
If automatic brightness or Adaptive Brightness (Samsung) is enabled, then your screen will automatically dim or brighten depending on ambient lighting conditions.
It is worth mentioning that you need to actually train the Adaptive Brightness feature on Samsung devices. This AI-powered feature learns what brightness levels you prefer over time. Then, it automatically makes the adjustments based on the patterns it identified.
However, Adaptive Brightness may not be compatible with certain apps. That may cause various brightness-related glitches.
To disable Adaptive Brightness on a Samsung device, go to Settings → Display. Then toggle off Adaptive Brightness.
If you want to disable automatic brightness adjustment on Android phones, go to Settings → Display and brightness and toggle off the Automatic option.
Equally, the Power Saving mode will automatically lower the brightness level when your battery reaches a certain percentage.
To disable Power Saving mode, go to Settings → Battery. Next, swipe the Power Saving Mode button to the left to disable the feature.
If you also enabled Eye Comfort, Blue Light, or Night Light, go to Settings → Display and turn these settings off. Check if the issue persists.
Disable the Video Enhancer (Samsung)
If you own a Samsung device, turn off the Video Enhancer and check if this solved the brightness problem.
The Video Enhancer brightens the screen to improve your viewing experience when watching YouTube videos or streaming Netflix. Go to Settings → Display and turn it off.
Can’t Change Brightness Because Another App Is Controlling It
If your apps prevent you from manually adjusting the brightness settings, close all the apps running in the background.
Use the App’s Built-in Brightness Tool
If you can’t adjust the brightness level using the slider, utilize the app’s built-in brightness tool.
For example, Netflix has its own brightness tool. To use it, simply tap your screen, and drag the sun icon to adjust the brightness level.
Clear the Cache
The junk files and system cache may trigger many types of glitches, including brightness-related problems.
Go to Settings → Storage and hit the Clean Up button to remove junk files and clear the system cache.
Then, restart your phone and check if your apps are still controlling the brightness settings.