Recently, a gentleman friend of mine, Bankole of TechCabal, purchased a brand new Nokia Lumia 520, but found out immediately that the camera button was

Some users report faulty Nokia Lumia 520 camera buttons

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Lumia 520

Recently, a gentleman friend of mine, Bankole of TechCabal, purchased a brand new Nokia Lumia 520, but found out immediately that the camera button was defective. Yesterday, another friend and a developer, Tag, purchased a unit that had the same fault. I was able to get my hands on Tag’s unit and can confirm that indeed the camera shutter button isn’t working. When the button is held and pushed, it doesn’t launch the camera app. I tweeted about this and got some responses indicating that some others had run into this same issue on their Lumia 520. Here is a sample tweet:

In at least one case, a buyer who returned their unit, and got a replacement, reports that the replacement had the same issue and had to be returned. Nokia Nigeria has responded on twitter to say that the issue will be addressed. here”

That is a good response by Nokia. To be sure, not all units have that fault. Many buyers seem happy with their devices.

Quick Tip

In the meantime, if you are interested in buying one, here is our tip: at the store you are buying from, insist that the tester tries out the camera button right in front of you. That way, if the unit is faulty, it can be replaced there and then, so you go home with a fully functional device.

Buy us ice cream later!


  1. A definite inconvenience, / annoyance to be sure.

    By the way, why does touchscreen phones have superfluous buttons like the hardware camera button, volume keys, when same can easily be Integrated into the touch experience.?

    Looking forward to when phones will TOTALLY lack physical buttons. That way, instances like defective camera, rickety volume rocker, etc, will be gone for good.

    Another reason why TOUCH is always better than PHYSICAL buttons!

  2. Thanks Mr Mo, I plan to get one in a few days as a birthday gift to myself :-), I will be sure to do a comprehensive review of the unit before I leave the store. I dont want to deal with issues like this.

  3. @ eye_bee_kay the camera button is useful so long as it can launch the camera from locked screen without having to unlock the screen first. Or wat do u think?

  4. Kayrode, you don’t need the camera key.

    Please note that my subsequent comments assume that you are not living in the Jurassic age of hardware keyboard o.

    Imagine, you have a defective camera key like here.

    All you need is a means of launching your camera app in another way.

    Automaton apps exist that allow you do many other things, (apart from merely launching the camera) via shaking the Phone, holding it in a certain way (like upside down)- etc.l, etc.

    Apart from the power button, I believe all other physical buttons (like volume, camera, lock, etc), are totally redundant, and are just things that will eventually break.

    They can be missing on a phone, and you would not miss them.

    In this era of gunning for the lightest and slimmest devices, buttons, physical ones, will eventually disappear.

    So says the “Prophet”…

  5. Here is more feedback from a user:

    So, in some cases, the camera button might actually work for a while before packing up.

    During the weekend, I was also reached by a Nokia official who re-iterated that they are aware of the situation and have escalated it to the highest levels within their organisation.

  6. No more Nokia for this young lad… Finally confirmed that they cannot handle the hardware (the part they are solely and only responsible for in their recent devices)… Time to try another like BB or something….

  7. Hello,
    I purchased a Nokia Lumia 520 yesterday and at first the camera button worked. Then I took off the back to put the battery in and the camera button didn’t work anymore. After taking off and putting back on the case a couple times the camera button worked again, so that might have been the problem some off you had.

  8. We had the same issue but found that if you touch the screen at where you want the auto-focus to work it also takes the picture without using the camera button. The picture button was sticking but having freed it it still doesn’t work – but this is a good work-around.

  9. I thought my Nokia 520 was defective but I did take the cover out and realigned the button and now the problem is solved. Try this before taking it to customer service

  10. I bought a lumia 520 a week ago and when I unpacked it the button worked fine and even the days after until five days after i bought it the button got stuck in the device, and just couldn’t take pictures anymore.
    Now i didn’t care because i dont use the camera but today when i use the phone it goes straight to the camera app so i cant do anything anymore……….

  11. I purchased two 520 and both kept switching off and back on now when u switch them on there not coming up with the home screen they come up Nokia the go blank instead of going to the blue screen

  12. I used Wouter’s solution and button is working perfectly again. Here’s a step-by-step (…for the really clueless…)

    -remove cover

    -use paperclip to push button (…if that works cover is the problem…)

    -after that use paperclip to push button “up” towards the touchscreen (…gently…)

    -the button should NOT move upwards AT ALL (…compare with working buttons…)

    -mine only had a half mm tolerance wich apparently is enough to cause disfunction

    -i used material from a disposable plastic drink bottle (…anything aprox 1mm thick…)

    -cut to size aprox 5mm x 25mm with scissors

    -push the narrow side in on top of button (…between button and screen…)

    -insert about 5mm

    -test button by pushing with paperclip

    -if it works then cut extruding bit of plastic with scissors

    -use paperclip or fingernails to push plastic in completely

    -replace cover


    -(i applied the trick to the other functioning buttons also as a precaution)

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