Recovery & Repair
Data Transfer

Solved: Android File Transfer Not Working on Mac

author Carrie Murray
date Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Since Android uses MTP (media transfer protocol) to transfer files with a computer and it is not supported on Mac by default, users need to install Android File Transfer on their Macs to copy files from Android to Mac. However, sometimes, Android File Transfer on Mac is not working and shows errors like:

  • Android File Transfer "Could not connect to device. Try connecting or restarting your device";
  • Android File Transfer "No Android device found. Please connect your Android device with a USB cable to get started";
  • Android File Transfer "Can't access device storage";
  • "Could not copy file";
  • "Try reconnecting or restarting your device".

Android File Transfer Could Not Connect to Device

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If Android File Transfer stops working on Mac and you can't connect your Samsung S9/S8/S7/S6/S5/Note 8, LG G6/G5 etc. to Mac, try the following tips to fix the problem.

Why is Android File Transfer Not Working on My Mac?

Android File Transfer could be not working because of one of the following reasons:

  • The USB cable that you are using is faulty.
  • You didn't enable file transfer on your Android device.
  • You have Samsung's Kies or Smart Switch installed on the Mac.
  • Your Mac or Android device doesn't support Android File Transfer.
  • The USB port is broken on your Mac.

If it is the last reason, sorry but there is nothing we can do to help. But if Android File Transfer stops working for other reasons, you can try these tricks.

Tricks to Fix Android File Transfer Not Working on Mac

Make sure your device is supported

Android File Transfer works on the computer running Mac OS X 10.5 and above. And the Android device connected must be running on Android 3.0 and up. So make sure your macOS system and Android system meet the minimum requirements of Android File Transfer.

Enable USB Debugging

It is important for USB debugging to be enabled so that the Mac to detect your Android phone and access Android storage for the Android File Transfer to work.

Enable USB Debugging on Android

Choose File Transfers on Android

After connecting your Android phone to Mac, Android File Transfer doesn't display your device immediately. You need to:

  • Unlock your Android phone;
  • Tap allow USB debugging;
  • On the notification center, tap "USB for charging" and select File transfers.

Choose File Transfers

Make sure you have done that.

Switch to a workable USB cable

Most connection problem is often caused by cables. So find another USB cable, connect your Android phone or tablet to Mac with the new cable and if Android File Transfer can find your device this time. If not, read on.

Uninstall Samsung Kies or Smart Switch

For those who can't connect their Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+/S8/S7/S6/S5/S4/Note 8/Note 5 to Mac computer, you should check if your Mac has Samsung Kies or Smart Switch installed. If you have either of the apps, uninstall the apps because Android File Transfer cannot work with Kies or Smart Switch.

Samsung Kies

Reinstall Android File Transfer

The last resort is to uninstall Android File Transfer for Mac and then reinstall the app from Android File Transfer page.

Android File Transfer Alternative to Copy Android Files to Mac

Since Google no longer updates Android File Transfer, the application stops working from time to time. So many users choose to switch to an Android File Transfer alternative. If you need to copy Android files to Mac to make a backup, you can use FonePaw Android Data Backup & Restore.

The program can selectively back up data from Android phone to Mac in a straight-forward way. It supports Android device from Android 2.3 to Android 9.0, including Samsung, LG, Pixel, Nexus, etc. You can back up photos, messages, contacts, videos, music, documents from Android to Mac.

Step 1 Free download the trial version of Android Data Backup & Restore on Mac

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Step 2 Run the program and connect your Android phone to the Mac. The program will display your device immediately.

Android Data Backup & Restore for Mac

Step 3 Choose Device Data Backup and select the data types you want to backup to Mac. If you would like to encrypt the backup with a password, tick Encrypt Backup. Click Start.

Select Android Data to Backup on Mac

Note: If you would like to backup all files on Android phone to Mac, choose One-click Backup to skip the data selection steps.

Step 4 A backup of your Android device will be created on your Mac. Wait till you see the success page.

Backup Android to Mac Done

Step 5 If you need to restore Android data from the backup on Mac, use Device Data Restore or One-click Restore on the program to get back the data.

Do you have other tricks to fix Android File Transfer not working? Share your tricks below.