Screenshot android app blocked?

There is a maintenance related outage of my utility company.
SInce I have a PV system with batteries I didn’t even notice that power went out.
But my electric induction stove was not happy with lights flickering and some kind of beeping sound.
When I opened up the sense app I saw there was some voltage but not within specs: 55 volts per leg.
I tried to make a screenshot of it but to my surprise the screenshot is just BLACK.

with another phone I took a photo of the screen that my primary phone was showing:

So why is the android APP blocking my phone from taking screenshots ?

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For Security reasons Android prevents screen shots of pages containing MAC addresses.
Android doesn’t know the actual image isn’t of the mac addr. just that the ‘System’ page contains a mac addr.
so the entire page is blocked.

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There is no mac address in the picture that I took with the other phone.
There is one on the page, but I scrolled down away from that for obvious reasons.

I googled “android screenshot mac address” but did not find any reference.
It gave me not any useful results.

I then opened the app of one of my solar inverters , which shows the mac address and was able to make a screenshot.

That leaves me with the only logical explanation:

My android 13 phone allows me to take screenshots of a page with a mac address.
The Sense app is blocking a screenshot from functioning.

Do you agree ?

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Weird, can also take captures of integrated device mac addrs… Apparently it’s through a ‘flag’ the dev’s enable that prevents it. Android has this option to allow devs to prevent financial or sensitive data from being easily captured. But no one really uses it, which begs the question who at Sense knew how to enable it, why and why don’t banks and whatnot use this flag option more?

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So that brings back the question:

Why is the (android) Sense app NOT allowing to take a screenshot ?

[update] I opened case with support about this

Glad you are filing a ticket. Seeing the same thing in the Sense Facebook group. Joel Scherzer has pointed out alternate places to see / record exactly the same Signals information (web app or Power Quality section of Android app) as a short term workaround for anybody who really needs that capability right now.

I got the message of a new android beta release today.
Installed that version (52.0-beta-3168) and same behavior: black screen when taking screenshot.

Will update when I hear something from support@

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I don’t have any Android. Is the screen shot block limited to just the Settings > Monitor tab/screen ?

As usual, you are spot on:
Home view: able to make screenshot

Settings: able to make screenshot

system: NOT able to make screenshot

Labs: able to make screenshots


To: @dannyterhaar

I ran the exact same tests that you ran and got the exact same results. My Android phone (version 13) would not take a screenshot of the SENSE ‘system’ page that has the monitor’s MAC address.

I tested @obscuredtrip 's theory using a different APP that displayed a MAC address. The screenshot worked correctly on other APP’s.

The issue is directly related to a screen setting in the phone’s SENSE APP.
My screen shot block is limited to just the Settings > Monitor tab/screen. (My reply to @kevin1)

Why is the (android) Sense app NOT allowing to take a screenshot? (quoted from Danny)


I have an Amazon Fire Tablet 7 (12th gen, 2022) that I’ve rooted and installed the Sense app (v51.0) (among other apps). I just gave this a try, to take a screenshot of the System page in Sense, and it doesn’t let me.

I hit the square button so I can switch apps, then I hit the screenshot button (which shows the Sense app as just a white screen), and it gives me an error message, “This action isn’t allowed by the app or your organization”. Any other screen will show as normal (not white) and screenshot works fine.

I went into app permissions and updated any/every option as far as system permissions, camera, location, etc, and still gives me the same results.

@JamesDrewAtSense @BeccaAtSense @JuliaAtSense


Unfortunately, fire tablets are not supported by the Sense app, so I don’t have a lot of insight into why this may be happening.

I can say that screenshots are turned off in some sections of the Sense app for security compliance purposes.

Thanks again, sorry for any inconvenience.

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Sorry, that is extremely vague to me.

“Security compliance” hints to me that Sense is working with enterprises, likely in Europe where the MAC addresses is sometimes considered as personal information under GDPR. Just a thought… No real knowledge.

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If that is the case I would like to hear from the horses mouth

If the app can block it, could there be message or instead of black, an overlay with a message that hints at possible privacy concerns ?

Could they move the data that I wanted a screenshot off, very low voltage conditions on L1 & L2 (54 volt each) to a page that I CAN screenshot ?

And now get off my lawn… :wink:

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As an FYI. This screenshot is entirely possible on the iOS version so an attempt to justify this with European regulations seems somewhat feeble.

If they insist on this protection, then I agree that blocking a screenshot of 15+ informational items, because of just one seems silly. They can trivially make the MAC address line not show it, but show a disclosure arrow instead and only block when disclosed. Or, as you suggest a larger redesign (which might not be a bad idea anyway).


Thank you, very informative and I totally agree!


@dannyterhaar, all super valid points. On point c), just screenshot the Power Quality view. It displays real-time L1 and L2 voltages as well in “Voltage now”, (even when the graph hasn’t been updating, AFAIK).

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Currently my BETA android version does not show LAB power quality page



Nothing shows when I clock on the LAB

So currently I have no other way to look at it then the SYSTEM menu.

@dannyterhaar , Wow ! Double whammy on the Android side. Wonder if the primary app build is on the iOS side ?

There’s always the web app. But lots of folks don’t know how to screen shot or screen video anymore on that.