UPDATE: We recently published an article about a common Galaxy S3 problem: Galaxy S3 Problem: I Can Hear Callers But They Can't Hear Me
We have a helpline open for your questions and problems. Do email us at email@example.com and tell us about them. But please be detailed as much as possible because that’s the only way we would know how to help you.
We know that the Samsung Galaxy S3 is a great phone with lots of features and we love it. But let’s face it, it’s not perfect and since it is the most popular Android device in 2012, millions of users also reported having been able to experience a problem or two.
We did an extensive research about those problems for months now and here we are publishing a very, very long article dealing with many Samsung Galaxy S3 problems and issues users reported online.
You will see that there are numbered recommendations; each item is actually a recommendation and not a continuation of the other.
Important Note: This is an ultimate list of problems users have reported to have experienced while using the Samsung Galaxy S3 and we will update it every time we discover a new problem. So, you better bookmark this page to avoid losing it.
We also answer questions about specific problems that might be bugging you now so email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and be detailed as possible.
#1. Sounds not coming out of the headphone
UPDATE (May 2, 2013): Tony just published an article on how to fix Galaxy S3 headphone jack problem.Scenario: The loud speaker sounds off even if a headphone is inserted.
- Try to use a different headphone and see if it works. If it does, the problem is with your headphones. You better buy another set.
- Try to pull the headphone jack a bit, it could just be a loose contact.
- Try to install SoundAbout and see if it can help resolve the issue. It is known to resolve a lot of Galaxy S3-specific headphone problems.
#2. Wi-Fi connection drops more oftenScenario: Galaxy S3 Wi-Fi connection suddenly drops without apparent reason.
- For a Wi-Fi connection that keeps on dropping in your Galaxy S3, you need to first check whether your router doesn’t have a problem.
- Check if you can connect with other devices just fine without being dropped off.
- Connect to a network you often get internet connection from and let your device “Forget” it. Reboot your phone and let it detect the same network and reconnect. See if that works.
#3. Touchwiz keeps on freezingScenario: Galaxy S3 becomes so slow because the Samsung TouchWiz UI keeps on freezing.
- Go to Settings => Application Manager => TW => Clear Data.
- If the first recommendation doesn’t work, you need to backup all your data and do a Factory Reset.
#4. Insufficient Internal Memory errorScenario: You can’t download or install an app because you’re getting “Insufficient Internal Memory” error popping.
- Transfer some of your files to your computer including music, movies, etc. Or, using your computer, you can cut them from the internal memory to the external memory (microSD card).
- Uninstall apps you don’t use anymore.
#5. Running low on RAMScenario: The Galaxy S3 is running very slow because the RAM is too low.
- Press and hold the Home button from your home screen so the list of the running apps shows up. Swipe each app left or right to close them.
- Go to Settings => Application Manager => Choose Running Tab => Close Unnecessary Services.
- Uninstall heavy apps like games especially when you’re not playing with them anymore.
- Do a Factory Reset.
#6. No SIM Card errorScenario: The phone says it doesn’t have a SIM card even if you’re sure there’s one in it.
- Turn off your phone, open the back panel and check if the SIM card is properly inserted.
- Take the SIM card out and gently wipe it with a clean, dry cloth.
- Insert a small piece of paper between the holder and the SIM card. It’s not really an orthodox way to fixing this problem but if the issue is with the connection, this will greatly help.
#7. Wi-Fi authentication failsScenario: Cannot connect to a Wi-Fi network because authentication fails.
- If you’re not the one who made the network, ask the administrator for the password or WEP key.
- Check if you’ve entered the correct credentials, i.e. password or WEP key.
- Check if the signal is stable from where you stand. There are times with the signal drops during authentication so the process cannot go through.
- If you’re the one making the network, try to use an open connection first and see if you could connect just fine.
- Try to use WEP, it is always known to be stable than other network types.
- Reboot phone to refresh everything.
- Try connecting to other networks to see if you could connect with them.
#8. Google Play Store server errorScenario: Every time a user downloads an app from the Google Play Store, the server error pops up.
- Check if you have a good internet connection. The server error message may be caused by interrupted connection.
- Update the Google Play Store app.
- Try downloading a different app to see if it would go through. If it does, then the problem is with the app you’re downloading.
#9. USB Hardware ID errorScenario: Every time a user connects the phone to a computer, the USB Hardware ID error shows up and the device couldn’t be detected by the computer.
- Download and install necessary USB drivers.
- Better yet, download and install the Samsung KIES application. The USB Hardware ID error is actually all about drivers.
#10. Music pauses more oftenScenario: Users experience having the music paused midway through the track, or the player pauses in between tracks.
- The Voice Command feature may be getting in the way for the music player to function well. So disable it to see if it works well after that. Go to Settings => Language and Input => Voice cmd for apps => uncheck Music.
- While this issue may be minor, if you can’t live with it, backup all your data and do a Factory Reset.
#11. Galaxy S3 shuts down automaticallyScenario: For no apparent reason, the Galaxy S3 reboots automatically.
- Try to discover what’s keeping the phone reboots. If they are apps, then find what apps are causing the problem then disable or uninstall them.
- For this problem, perhaps the best thing to do is Factory Reset.
#12. Cannot play Flash videos anymoreScenario: Users complaining not being able to play flash videos after an update.
- Google took the Flash player out for good because Adobe didn’t want to provide support anymore.
- There is an .apk file you can find from the web, you can download that and install into your device. We refuse to link to sites offering unofficial Android apps; just Google it.
#13. Cannot set specific music folderScenario: Many users were asking how they could set a specific folder for music.
- The Android stock music app does detect all formats or music but users cannot actually direct the app to just scan contents from a specific folder. As a workaround, you can just copy music you want to play in your device.
- Or, you could download and install the Mixzing music app that would allow you to set a specific folder to read music from.
#14. Galaxy S3 home screen often freezesScenario: Every time a user press the Home button to go back to the home screen, the phone freezes for a few seconds.
- This problem is replicated, perhaps, because of the TouchWiz UI. So, you might as well want to clear data for the launcher. Go to Settings => Application Manager => TW => Clear Data.
- You can also try to stop other services that’s eating a lot of RAM so the performance would improve. The Galaxy S3 only has 1GB RAM and around 200MB have already been eaten by the OS other services for its features. So, freeing some space would surely help.
#15. Message app lags and freezesScenario: Users can no longer send a text message because the Message app won’t load, keeps on lagging, and even freezes from time to time.
- Clear data of the app: Settings => Application Manager => Message => Clear Data.
- You could also delete some really old messages to free up some space. It has already been proven that messages accumulate, the app becomes slower and slower to the point that it will crash.
- The last resort would be to do a Factory Reset.
#16. Galaxy S3 won’t turn on and chargeScenario: The phone is totally drained and it won’t charge. The user couldn’t bring it to life.
- There are a lot of reasons why a phone won’t power on but in the case of the Galaxy S3, it is always the battery that’s the culprit. Users need to take the battery out, plug the charger in to the power source and plug the phone to the charger. They have to press the power button so the device will be forced to power on taking electricity from the charger. Once on, they are advised to turn it off and re-insert the battery then charge it normally until full.
- If the first procedure won’t work, try to boot the device into the Recovery Mode. If it does boot up in Recovery Mode but not in normal mode, then it’s a software problem. A factory reset via the Recovery Mode can fix this problem.
#17. Battery is drained fasterScenario: The Galaxy S3′s 2300mAh battery powers the device for only 5 hours or less. That’s not as long as what the phone has been advertised.
- The first thing to do is adjust screen brightness. The phone has a Super AMOLED display and it is just natural the display will eat up more power than other components. You could use a low-level brightness or use the auto-brightness feature.
- Stop apps running in the background. Press and hold the Home button and swipe left or right apps that’s showing on the screen.
- Stop unused services. Go to Settings => Application Manager => All tab => stop unnecessary apps and services.
- Reboot the device to clear its memory.
- Let the phone rest from time to time.
#18. Memory card dismounts from time to timeScenario: The external storage gets undetected from time to time. Pictures couldn’t be loaded in the gallery, and files become inaccessible.
- If you are using a SanDisk microSD card, then there’s nothing wrong with your phone. SanDisk already issued a statement acknowledging some of their storage devices have problems and most of the issues experienced in Galaxy S3 are thought to be caused by them.
- Others who have experienced the same problem attest that by reformatting the microSD card (after backing up all your data, of course), the problem will be gone.
#19. Slow battery rechargeScenario: It would take forever for the battery to be fully recharged. Others say they left the phone plugged in over night but it still shows 80% of the battery.
- These problems actually happened after the Jelly Bean update. Many say they have resolved the issue by clearing battery statistics. It seemed that the indicator says the battery is not yet fully charged but in fact, it is.
- For those using a different charging unit, make sure the one you bought is rated 2A. Anything lower than that would take longer time to charge or won’t charge at all.
#20. Galaxy S3 muted occasionallyScenario: A user can’t hear a sound coming out from the loudspeaker or headphones from time to time. In other words, the phone is muted for a short while occasionally.
- There could be some problems with the speaker, so try to inspect if something is blocking or corroding it.
- It could be a software problem so check for software updates. Many of audio-related problems were caused by a software glitch and could be fixed by an update.