The activity status is the small green dot that appears next to your name in DMs that tells people if you are currently active on Instagram or when you last used the app.
If your Instagram activity status is not working, people may get the wrong idea if they see you as perpetually active or inactive for a long time even when that is not the case.
Fortunately, there are several troubleshooting solutions you can try to fix the Instagram activity status not showing properly or updating accurately.
In this detailed guide, we will cover:
- Reasons Why Your Instagram Activity Status is Not Working
- Solutions to Fix Instagram Activity Status Not Updating
By the end of this guide, your Instagram activity status should be working correctly again so you can avoid giving people the wrong impression about your online activity.
Reasons Why Your Instagram Activity Status is Not Working
There can be several reasons why your Instagram activity status fails to update accurately or remains stuck showing you as active or inactive incorrectly:
Outdated App Version
If you are using an outdated version of the Instagram app, it may not have the coding updated properly to reflect your accurate activity status. Staying updated ensures all features work optimally.
Software Bugs and Glitches
Like any app, Instagram too can have occasional software bugs and glitches that cause certain features like the activity status to malfunction. Server issues on Instagram’s end could also contribute.
Background App Refresh Turned Off
The background app refresh feature allows apps like Instagram to update content and refresh data even when you are not actively using the app. If this is disabled, your activity status cannot update itself in real time.
Restricted Internet Connectivity
Limited internet access prevents apps from updating in real time. Connection issues like using mobile data with poor reception or being on an unstable public Wi-Fi network could impact this.
Date and Time Settings Not Accurate
The date and time settings need to be accurate for status indicators like the activity status dot to update properly. If your time zone or actual time is not correctly set, it can mess things up.
Conflict with Other Apps
If you have certain apps running in the background or settings enabled that limit background activity for Instagram, it can prevent status indicators from updating themselves when Instagram is not an actively used app.
Account Privacy Settings
If you have your Instagram account settings managed to maximize privacy and limit data sharing, it could unintentionally impact some features like the green activity dot from updating accurately.
Server-Side Instagram Issues
Instagram servers have to process enormous amounts of data at all times. Occasionally server overload issues or Instagram app crashing can temporarily cause features like the activity indicator to glitch until it stabilizes.
Now that you know what’s causing your Instagram activity status to not update properly, let’s get right into the solutions.
How to Fix Instagram Activity Status Not Updating
Follow these troubleshooting tips sequentially to resolve your Instagram activity status issues:
1. Verify “Show Activity Status” is Enabled
The first thing you should check is if you have disabled the “Show Activity Status” option in your Instagram settings. This toggle needs to remain enabled for the activity status indicator to display and update next to your username.
Follow these steps to check this setting:
- Open the Instagram app and go to your profile by tapping your profile picture in the bottom right.
- Tap the three horizontal line hamburger menu located in the top right corner.
- Scroll down the options and select “Settings and privacy”.
- Tap on “Messages and story replies”.
- Scroll down further and ensure the “Show activity status” option is toggled ON or enabled (green).
If this was toggled off for any reason, enable it once more and check if your activity status works now.
2. Restart the Instagram App
An app restart helps refresh things and reconnect all servers properly. Follow these instructions to fully restart the Instagram app:
- If Instagram is currently open or running in the background, completely force close it first.
- Locate the Instagram app icon on your home screen and tap to launch the app again.
Give the app a few minutes after restarting to accurately display your current activity status again.
3. Restart Your Device
If an app restart does not work, the next logical troubleshooting step is to restart your Android phone, iPhone, or tablet device altogether:
- Hold down the Power button on your mobile device to bring up the power menu.
- Tap to select the Restart or Reboot option.
- Wait patiently as your phone or tablet shuts down, reboots, and powers back on. Unlock it once ready.
- Open Instagram again and check if your accurate activity status shows now.
Restarting your device helps clear out minor glitches, refreshes connections, and re-syncs background app data and statuses.
Here are additional troubleshooting tips I have incorporated into the post:
4. Check if Instagram is Down
Before troubleshooting further, check if the issue is actually on Instagram’s end:
- Search for “Instagram down” on Twitter or Google to check for any user reports confirming an Instagram outage.
- Check down detector sites like Downdetector.com and IsItDownRightNow.com to confirm any officially reported Instagram problems.
If Instagram itself seems to be facing platform issues, there is little you can do but wait it out, unfortunately.
Similarly, along with larger outages, Instagram’s systems do face occasional short technical glitches.
- Simply wait for a few hours and retry loading your profile or activity status indicator, later on, to check if the problem resolves itself without any action.
Instagram typically restores proper functionality within hours in such cases.
5. Ensure Background App Refresh is Enabled
Background app refresh is what allows app data and statuses to update themselves even when you aren’t actively using the app.
Check it is enabled for Instagram:
- Open your device Settings -> Battery settings -> Background App Refresh.
- Ensure Background App Refresh itself is switched ON.
- Check that Instagram is allowed background activity access and isn’t restricted.
Enabling background data refresh is crucial for your activity status to update itself in real time.
6. Check if Your Account is Restricted
Violating Instagram’s community guidelines can get your account restricted or banned, which may limit functionality:
- Go to your profile -> Settings -> Help -> Account -> Learn more.
- Check if you have a notification saying your account privileges are temporarily limited.
Restrictions like posting, messaging etc. limits can indirectly impact other features as well.
7. Try Using the Instagram Web App
An alternative troubleshooting method is to check if the Instagram web app has the same activity status issues:
- Open Instagram.com in your desktop web browser.
- Log into your account and navigate to your profile.
If the activity indicator works fine in the web version, then the issue lies with the mobile app specifically.
8. Check for App Updates
Having the latest version of Instagram ensures you have all bug fixes and optimizations for the best performance.
Follow these steps to check and install updates:
- Open the Play Store app if you use an Android or the App Store on an iPhone/iPad.
- Use the search bar to find the “Instagram” app.
- Tap the Instagram icon.
- Tap “Update” to upgrade Instagram to the latest version if available.
Using the updated version of the app may resolve any activity status indicator errors you were facing.
9. Reinstall the Instagram App
If your activity status still fails to update accurately even in the latest Instagram app version, do a clean reinstall of the app:
- Long press and hold the Instagram app icon and tap “Uninstall”.
- Confirm uninstalling the Instagram app from your mobile device.
- Open the Play Store / App Store again.
- Search for “Instagram”.
- Tap to reinstall Instagram on your device again.
- Log into your account once more after Instagram reinstalls.
Reinstalling cleans out any corrupted cached data or unstable files causing functionality problems.
10. Log Out and Log Back In
Sometimes simply logging out and back into your Instagram account again does the trick:
- Inside Instagram, tap your profile picture in the bottom right corner.
- Tap the gear icon in the top right corner to open settings.
- Scroll down and select “Log out”. Confirm logging out.
- Close Instagram fully from memory and relaunch the app.
- Enter your username and password to log in again.
Relinking your account forces a full refresh and re-syncs everything from server side.
11. Clear the Instagram App Cache
Outdated app cache data can also cause activity status errors. Here’s how to wipe it clean:
- Open your Android or iOS device’s main Settings app.
- Tap on “Apps” or “Applications”.
- Navigate to the application manager.
- Search and select the “Instagram” app.
- Tap on “Storage and cache”.
- Tap the option to clear Instagram’s cache.
Clearing out the old cached data gives the app a fresh start to function smoothly again.
12. Check Your Internet Connection
Without stable internet connectivity, apps cannot refresh status indicators like the activity dot in real-time.
To rule out internet issues:
- Turn off mobile data and try using Wi-Fi if you have a weak mobile connection.
- Alternatively, turn off Wi-Fi and try using only mobile data instead.
- Also restart your Wi-Fi router or mobile modem completely.
This refreshes your internet connectivity as a whole. Check if Instagram now displays updates.
13. Check Date and Time Settings
Having incorrect date and time settings can confuse apps relying on timestamps to update statuses and indicators.
Make sure to check that:
- Your device’s date and time are set accurately as per your location.
- The time zone is correctly configured for your region.
- Enable the “Automatic date and time” and “Automatic time zone” options if available.
The right date/time helps apps coordinate statuses based on accurate timestamps.
14. Toggle Off Background App Refresh
Some devices have additional battery saving settings enabled by default to limit background activity. Turn off such options temporarily:
- Go into your device Settings.
- Navigate to “Battery” or “Battery Saver”.
- Locate the setting toggle to enable/disable “Background App Refresh”.
- Check if it’s disabled. If yes, tap to enable it.
Allowing background data refresh gives Instagram the resources to update your activity dot.
15. Reach Out to Instagram Support
If absolutely nothing works, get in touch with Instagram’s customer support directly about the activity status issue:
- Open the Instagram app and on the profile tab.
- Go to the gear Settings icon again.
- Scroll down and select “Help”.
- Tap “Contact”, then choose “Something Else”.
- Select the issue details closest to your problem.
- Tap “Need More Help” to contact their support team.
Instagram support can further help troubleshoot or escalate technical issues for fixing.
Getting your activity status to accurately update again may require patience and trial and error with these troubleshooting tips.
We recommend trying them step-by-step patiently to isolate the issue instead of taking shots in the dark randomly.
Hopefully, these solutions help resolve the annoying problem of your Instagram activity status failing to refresh or display properly. Share this handy troubleshooting guide with friends and family facing similar issues.