Samsung Galaxy S4 Problems

The Samsung Galaxy S4 may be a good phone, but it also has its problems. Some Galaxy S4 users have reported some major problems with their phones. Some of them are software problems and some of them are hardware defects. Here are some of the problems that the users are reporting:

There have been reports that some Galaxy S4′s were getting very hot 46°C (115°F) not only when playing games, but even when the phone was idle (screen off)

The possible reason could be MediaServer. Check if ‘Mediaserver’ is taking up your CPU/Battery (Settings -> More -> Battery). If it is, disable it.

Screen Smearing Issue


Some other users are reporting that their screen is smearing, basically while scrolling dark greys on blacks smudge/smear purple.

A test for this is in settings, on anything grey if you slowly scroll up and down the grey bits go purple.

Battery Drain When Rebooting

When you turn the phone of and then on again, the battery levels jump down to 10-15 percent less of what it was before. It is also displayed in the settings battery status graph.
(This seems to be a problem with Android)

Vibration Of The Earpiece

When the volume is set to max during a call through earpiece, the slight vibration made because of the sound emission is felt on the back of the device (in a cheap way) and apparently, every s4 has this issue.


According to some users, there is lag when opening the Camera and Gallery App, Shutter lag when taking photos, and dialer and contact app taking longer than necessary to open

Launcher redraw

After opening an app for a few moments, like browsing the web or watching YouTube and then going to the launcher, the launcher will redraw, which means every widget and icon will disapear and after a couple of seconds will appear again.

Videos playing only sound

Occasionally videos, on any type of app will give only audio. Rebooting the device fixes the problem.

That’s all the major problems for now. Do you have any other problems? Post them down below and let me know.

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Ronaldo is an IT student who loves everything about technology. He is devoted to everything that is tech-related and tries the best to produce useful and quality articles about mobiles, computers and consoles.

143 Responses to Samsung Galaxy S4 Problems

  1. Dennis says:

    Occasionally videos, on any type of app will give only audio. Rebooting the device fixes the problem.

  2. Mostafa says:

    How can I disable ‘Mediaserver’ ??

  3. mihir says:

    I have 2 isssue
    1.the camera many time take like 8-9,sec
    2.not able to change the fonts in the settings saying font noinstalled

  4. JT says:

    How do I get my phone from zooming when I don’t want it to? It happens when I play games

  5. after instakization of game I couldn’t download it why in s4 19500 model why… plz help me guys

  6. Problems with my first S4. Returned and swapped for another.
    #1 Would not connect to bluetooth.
    # 2 Major lag in texting as well as putting down symbols I.e. @ instead of the letter a without hitting the shift button..very annoying.
    # 3 Gestures are a joke..The dint work,period.
    # 4 Overheated and rebooted several times.
    # Dropped calls. No its not my carrier. Never happened once with my Galaxy Nexus.
    Ok now problems with my second S4.
    Everything above except that ones bluetooth worked fine.
    Either way took that one back as well.
    Wasted quite a bit of time with tech support..Good luck finding someone at Samsung tech support who can help you..Oh yeah forgot one more thing. screen mirroring wirelessly with a Samsung Smart T.V. works only if you don’t hold the phone more than two feet away from it.

  7. Camera lag …sometime when try to use camera..its stuck nag phone get reboot…

  8. Dan McGerald says:

    Bought an S4 from Verizon yesterday, phone will not allow me to access home wi-fi, after enter password Cancel button is accessible but connect button is gray and not usable.

  9. Gilbert says:

    My S4 lags when I play games

  10. mark says:

    im having problems with the phone rings the screen is still black, or sometimes when I want to end the call, have to press the home button to get the screen back on. It’s extremely frustrating. When I reboot the phone its fixed, I think its a software problem. This is my first and last android device, if they don’t fix this problem soon

  11. melissa says:

    My sound has suddenly stopped. I have tried the volume settings and restarting the phone but nothing is working.??

    • Ronaldo says:

      Hi melissa, try to factory reset it.

      • Koreen says:

        I’m experiencing a similar problem too. I have no sound/music at all until I use my headphones… annoyed as phone is only 6 days old and treated like a Baby!

        • Auggiem says:

          Same problem here, sound reappeared for a few days, however it went out again, just works with headphones.

        • bedank says:

          pfft…6 days?! i’ve had mine less than 24 hours and already with this and keyboard/display freezing issues. so not cool.

    • kcyong33 says:

      when i make a call, i cant hear any sound fr the other end but they can hear me. If i put it on speakers or bluetooth headset, it’ll work. It happen a wk ago, after I’ve used the s4 for 2 mths. Is this samsung quality?

  12. melissa says:

    if I factory reset will I lose all photos?

  13. jeane says:

    I can’t make a call but incoming is ok…How will i fix it?

    • Ronaldo says:

      Hi jeane, why can’t you make a call? What does it says when you try to do so?

    • Tirhas says:

      i have the same problem. i can’t make a call.. did u fix the problem? if so pls tell me.

    • kcyong33 says:

      when i make a call, i cant hear any sound fr the other end but they can hear me. If i put it on speakers or bluetooth headset, it’ll work. It happen a wk ago, after I’ve used the s4 for 2 mths. Is this samsung quality?

  14. hairi says:

    my menu and back button not functioning….after reboot still can’t used it

  15. James says:

    I always keep my cell phone on vibrate to prevent distracting others and carry it on a belt holder. I recently purchased a Samsung S4 and the vibration is not strong enough to feel the vibration. This was not a problem with prior phones including blackberries. How do I adjust the vibration strength?

    • Ronaldo says:

      Hi James
      1.Go to Settings
      2.Go to My Device tab
      3.Tap on Sound and open “Vibration intensity”
      4.Choose the vibration intensity for Incoming Call, Notification, and Haptic Feedback.
      That will fix your problem

  16. Janet says:

    I have very little service. I had the earlier version of the Galaxy and had great service. Now I have very spotty service when all my other Verizon users are full bars.

    • anizajordaan says:

      im experiencing the same problems. Since im travelling a lot i choose the automatic connection to available service provider and now when im home i keep losing signal!

  17. chicho265 says:

    Hi, my service keeps going off when the phone is blocked, and even when in use

  18. Michael says:

    Has anyone had this problem? I just bought a galaxy s4 to replace my iPhone. After importing all my contacts, I can only call or text people with a phone number format within Korea e.g. 010 xxxx xxxx. Calling or texting any numbers with the international format doesn’t work e.g. +8210 xxxx xxxx. Strangely, you can’t even enter a “+” with the s4.

    I went back to the shop but they were no help suggesting I just use skype to call or text internationally??!?

    The only success I did have was entering 001 before the number e.g. 00164… to New Zealand. People could receive my calls and texts however I couldn’t receive their replies to my texts. This also results in random phone numbers coming up so both parties don’t know who is calling/texting.

    Ideally, I want all my contacts saved in the international format so nothing changes when I go on holiday or leave Korea.

    Any help appreciated. It’s driving me crazy.

  19. gunthore says:

    1st S4 bought through Verizon had major lag in all areas and difficulty swiping screen to unlock. 2nd phone stopped charging after 1 weeks use (other reports of this on Android Forum). Waiting for the 3rd S4 to arrive but Samsungs “Next big thing” is looking like a big flop.

  20. zoe says:

    Can anyone help? Have had the galaxy s4 for about 5hrs. Working fine at first but now every time I open an app ect its doing a launcher redraw. Really frustrating me as would expect this from a brand new phone.

  21. Stephan says:

    My Samsung S4 volume is not working. I have it turned upon everything and no sound is coming out. The vibration works but that is all. Comments?

  22. T says:

    Hey Mike, have you tried to press and hold down the ’0′ key on the keypad?

  23. My entire screen is glitchy colorful snow, sort of reminiscent of a completely broken board on a monitor. Minus the display, the phone “works” fine, even the touch.

    Here is the crazy part…the display is fine if I can navigate (by memory) to any screen with the keyboard pulled out, like replying to a text or typing in a URL. Then the screen is crystal clear.

    • Ronaldo says:

      Hi Laura.
      Go to Settings>My Device Tab>Display and untick “Auto Adjust Screen Tone” option. This should fix the flickering problem a little bit.

  24. jagjiwan says:

    Hi Ronaldo

    please, Simpley tell s4 is good phone or not ?

    OR battery heating is main problem of it ?

  25. jagjiwan says:

    why many users says heating problem ?

  26. Dave says:

    Has anyone had any joy with the factory reset? my friends phone has just done the same. Tango and other calling apps work but not the phones own calling. Tried calling me a few time but getting no sound on my end or theirs, it was working a few hours before then just stopped.

  27. arnab96 says:

    I bought a Samsung Galaxy S4 (GT-I9500) paying a whooping amount of INR 41,500/- on 08th July 2013. Within a week I suffered Mobile Network Signal Drop (NO SERVICE – ERROR SEARCHING NETWORKS) & Call Drops!!. I tried replacing my SIM card and trying other network provider’s SIM too. But the problem persisted. I also researched the internet and came to know that many of the users have the same problem! It’s definitely a handset fault. I contacted Samsung Customer Care on 16th July 2013 and they said that as a policy they could not replace my Samsung Galaxy S4 GT-I9500 as it has crossed 7 days period after purchase (NOT TO MENTION…RIDICULOUSLY SAMSUNG INCLUDES SUNDAYS TOO, EVEN WHEN THE CUSTOMER CARE CENTERS ARE CLOSED!!) Failing to solve the issue even after updating my software, now they have provided me with the option of replacing the motherboard of Samsung Galaxy S4 (GT-I9500). My charm of buying such an high-end phone has been completely lost and left me shattered fearing any more loss after motherboard replacement! I feel cheated buying a Toy of INR 41,500/-, when Samsung cannot even provide a stable BASIC necessity. It’s even more sad for me since I have still not started paying my monthly installments! ( At great loss here buying this phone. I DO NOT recommend Samsung Galaxy S4 to anyone, unless you want to waste your hard earned money.

    Can anyone provide me with a solution to this?

  28. Dave says:

    Managed to fix it, my friend had Tango installed a free video call app same as vibr i think. well I rang the local 3 store up said about my problem, he couldnt think what the problem was then remembered that they had a customer in with a similar problem. What had happend was vibr had taken over the phones calling, so the phone would connect on a normal call but no sound. They uninstalled vibr and hey presto the phone worked… Pretty much the same for my friend their tango crashed a few times then the phone had its problem, so we uninstalled tango and the phone started to work correctly again.
    Long winded but I hope this helps.

  29. Luu says:

    Constantly drops signal. Bars drive down to no bars to the crossed out circle. Phones around me, including a Galaxy S3 with the same provider and data plan have perfect bars while the s4has no signal. Missed calls, cannot surf the Web, cannot send or receive messages.

    Its the international version so in pay full price. Its a waste of phone and hard earned money.
    Constantly searching the forums and cannot find anything.
    I live outside the USA so I’m hoping I can get a replacement.

    I regret purchasing the s4. My partners s3 works like a dream.

  30. Liv says:

    My Galaxy S4 screen has suddenly gone complete black, no image and no lighting. The menu button and the ‘back’ key towards the bottom of the device seem to be working though.

    I know the device is still working because I could receive calls on it – but only when I’m driving and my device bluetooth is connected to my car – because I’m unable to swipe on the right spot to pick up my call. It also vibrates when a call comes in, and it gives notification when new messages/emails arrive. I can even connect it to my computer and I even try to have it backed up etc. while the screen is complete black and non-functional.

    So the jist is, I believe the screen is shot – it is literally useless to me right now.

    I’ve tried taking out the battery, the SIM card, the memory card and then putting everything back in. I called my carrier’s technical support already and was told to back up the stuff on my device to Kies on my computer, which I did, and then he told me that I’d have to bring the device to a store to have it sorted out there.

    Any ideas?

  31. Alfredo says:

    I am having trouble with my s4 every time I lock my screen the phone vibrates is this a setting? If so how can I remove it?

  32. reina says:

    I can’t watch youtube videos… if I use the Youtube app, it says unsupported video format and to create an account at but logging in to youtube thru a browser never helped… if i try to watch a youtube video through the browser (internet or chrome), the audio plays but the video never moves. Had similar problems with Galaxy Tab 2.

  33. Dimitri says:

    I can turn all my volumes to whatever I wish except the media volume. its stuck at vibrate for some reason and it won’t let me move the bar. resetting the phone does nit work…. im thinkin I should just go get an iphone or somethin

  34. jon says:

    Taking mine back tomorrow due to issues dating back to Jan relating to the bluetooth issues identified in jellybean 4.2…my phone is jb 4.2.2 and they wont give me the v4.3 patch. Phone has video / audio sync issuess when streaming bluetooth on headphones wireless speakers…bluetooth is choppy and unreliabe.

  35. chrise64 says:

    My screen display sometimes glitches and it looks broken but its not broken what do I do?

  36. richard says:

    down loaded bs player free for my videos on s3.. changed to s 4 video NO SOUND checked card in lap top all is well back on phone NOOOO SOUND wud up

  37. jips says:

    samsung galaxy s4 screen turns black with only date and time. tried factory reset and still nothing happens.. how can i fix this problem? tnx

  38. Jullius says:

    My samsung galaxy s4 GT-I9500 is unable to launch apps i tried to reset but still writing “Anfortunately, launcher has stoped” can u help plz

  39. Mostafa says:

    I have a problem at s4 the widgets it’s not updating and clock widgets not working and appear blank

  40. Mostafa says:

    I made what you say and still not working

  41. M.Mokhtar says:

    i have a problem with s4 the widgets it’s not making update like digital clock widgets it’s appear blank ,can you help me ????

  42. Lena says:

    Im very pleased with my phone. However, when I browse the internet and I scroll down, it sometimes stops scrolling even though I know the page continues. I then try to use the go back button but the only thing that seems to work is reloading the page. Happens often!

  43. Lena says:

    Hmm. I try that. Thanks!

  44. Nadeem says:

    If you want to buy glaxy so 4 don’t do it it is big headach

  45. madel says:

    Hello… i have a problem with my samsung s4… the earpiece doesn’t work. I have to use my headset or switch to loudspeaker everytime i’m receiving or making a call… pls help me…

  46. Tonya says:

    what can ido,… PLEASE HELP ME…..

  47. Gerry says:

    Gerry says:
    I downloaded 40 pictured from mu desktop on to my S4 and now I am not able to delete them using the normal method.

  48. Sham says:

    Hi, eversince I dropped my phone, I have been having software issues. It starts “dancing” around my screen ie: as I type my messages, it clicks on random messages to save, it clicks on wrong apps when I am trying to open another app, the screen dances etc. I did a master reset as well and taking out my batt and putting it back. It is still the same. I do not want to master reset again as it is troublesome to regain back all my apps and whatever not.

    Is there any thing I could do to solve this problem?

  49. Mustafa says:

    i have a particular problem!
    my phone installed some updates a few days before and after that every thing goes fine except when i make, close, answer or reject calls
    in this particular moment my display freezes, but i can talk when i answer or listen the ring calling the other number. the display remains i this state for 10 seconds.
    this is bothering me so much because i am not able to use the phone when i reject, or i cant open something else( contact or keyboard ) during calls,
    i use a galaxy s4 i 9505 with T-Mobile Germay Rom
    any one had this isue??
    please help

  50. Allen says:

    when I transfer videos, it plays them very slowly and they are turned to the left

  51. diary says:

    hey all i have a problem in my galaxy s4 when it is in my pocket it become silent or if it is silent it become sound how to solve it? thanks for helping.

    • Ronaldo says:

      Diary, maybe the volume buttons are pressed accidentally when your phone is in your pocket? So your phone becomes silent when it has sound and vice versa.

  52. kiarra says:

    Hi im having a problem with my samsung galaxy s4 it dosent vibrate anymore and I have done everything to fix it and it still dosent work. Could a app I installed be stopping my phone from vibrating or do I need to get my phone fixed? PLEASE HELP ME :(

  53. M. Hoffman says:

    I have a Samsung Galaxy s4…loved it in the beginning then a system update changed my love to frustration…along came the second update…nothing different just a few more non-deletable apps I have no use for…and some of the apps I found useful, now less so…the original driving mode (now apparently called Hands Free)…seems as if it was reduced to a lesser, generic version of what was once one of my favorite features. Replacing the pleasant, actual human like voice is now a monotone digital drone of a voice that aside from its apparent annoyance…can’t understand a flipp’n enunciated word I say…What was a feature that attracted me to buying this phone is now a useless waste of precious space to me..let me say reading all your posts have been educational. I don’t know a lot..but can find my way around a device as to basic function..perhaps a few extras…know nothing about rooting. I am frequently kicked off my own wifi at home, which seem to improve after the last update but alas…not permanent. I am reading as some asked model numbers and those that replied mentioned GTxxxxx….mine starts with SCH…after update 2 mine says kernel version and other are talking jelly bean. I am lost. Videos were once flawlessly played…now freeze or stop constantly to buffer…I deactivated the damn eyeball thing thinking it was that sensitive…not the problem…I could go on…but babbled enough already. Currently I am super annoyed having paid for and received an already working phone…which after “up” grading, actually “down” graded some of its original amenities…to what I feel are lesser versions of what was. In closing, being a Verizon customer and of course no longer having unlimited data available, it burns me up when I look on my icons and see I’m not even connected to wifi…but it keeps telling me it’s scanning…then available…click to connect nothing…OR connect only to be disconnected. Same router with no problems originally….sorry so long…*sigh*

    • Ronaldo says:

      Hi M. Hoffman, is your warranty still available? If not, then you might consider flashing a firmware which will revert your phone to the Android version it had before the update. Hopefully you will not have any problems anymore.

      • Mary Ellen says:

        Thanks for responding…can you explain more about your suggestion for firmware?…where and how to install…not sure about warranty…I probably have the phone for 6 to 8 months

  54. karthika says:

    hai… am using Samsung galaxy s4 – GT-19500. how to turn off the vibration while typing the message?

  55. Michael Mcculloch says:

    I recorded a few videos on my phone and they all played fine but now one will play without sound where the rest are ok can you help plse

  56. Kyle says:

    After the latest kit kat update, any time I start a song with or without headphones, the volume dims by about 20 percent. I tried volume booster apps but none worked. No other forums discuss this issue.

  57. john says:

    after using my samsung galaxy s4 for atleast 6 months, i downloaded a video from u torrent app on my s4 when i played that video my phone screen started flickering. It happened only when i used to play any video.. i did a soft reset and the video played normally.. after 1 month this happened again but this time i did downloaded that u torrent app… nor any kind of stuff jst played a whatsapp video and the screen started flickering while playing video… this happens only when i play video, again i did a soft reset a now video is being played normally i hope it does not happen again .. currently i am using the latest software 4.4.2 kitkat. i would like to know is this hardware or a software problem please do tell me

    • Ronaldo says:

      What kind of applications do you use to play videos? After you play a video, does the problem continue or does it stop?

      • john says:

        Generally i use mx player or the video player which is there on S4. If the flickering starts once it keeps on flickering for other videos too and on both the applications which used to run normally on my phone before the problem occurs, and i have to go for a soft reset to solve it.
        hardware problem or software problem ??

        • Ronaldo says:

          It is hard to say. After you perform a factory reset, have you tried playing videos without installing MX Player? Does the problem occur then?

          • john says:

            as i told you after factory reset problem goes away and videos plays normally … till now i am not having any issues … But i have this problem twice.. i hope it just works normally

          • Ronaldo says:

            That’s good then. It is most likely a software issue.

          • john says:

            Thanx Ronaldo… But would like to know it is some application which creates this problem or it is phone software 4.4.2 kitkat

          • Ronaldo says:

            It might the MX Video Player but a firmware bug might also be the problem.

  58. Satish says:

    I’m using my S4 I9500 model and andriod version is 4.4.2 I’m facing a problem on video player..I’m not able to play any videos and I even try mx player but I face same problem… I had even given try by hard resetting my phone at first it played videos but afterwards again I face same problem.. Plz help me out

  59. l.c.dixon says:

    I’m using a Samsung galaxy s4. I can receive text messages but cannot send.

  60. sandeep kumar says:

    I am using GT-i9500 made in korea 4.2.2 version, while i was trying to connect through screen mirroring with my samsung dk6400 tv,i found that there is no on/off switch in system setting->connection->screen mirroning.
    please help me how to turn on.

  61. Chloe says:

    Whenever I receive a text with a photo from an iPhone user I get a message that one or more of the components have been deleted. Either the message was to large or unsuitable for my handset. But I can get pictures from anyone else.. His can I fix this?

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