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AT&T Galaxy Note 3 Problems After Android 4.4 KitKat Update

ATT-Galaxy-Note-3-KitKat-Update

AT&T just rolled out the Android 4.4 KitKat update for the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 under its network. While the update brings a lot of improvements to the phone, problems also come with it. There were already hundreds of users complaining about some issues with their phone after the update, the ones we cited below are just some of them.

If you found this post, I’m pretty sure you’re looking for solutions to your problems or answers to your questions. If you cannot find them in this short list, don’t hesitate to email us at [email protected] and we may include your problems / questions in our next installment of this series.

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#1. System update not available

Problem: So AT&T rolled out the Android 4.4 KitKat update for the Galaxy Note 3, which I and my wife own. Long story short, my wife gets the update and I don’t and we’re living under the same roof. When I check for updates, it says that my phone has the latest software, which I know isn’t just by looking at the version it currently has. What appears is 4.3 baseband N900AUCUBMJ5. If you guys have any idea how to pull the update down, I would greatly appreciate it.Joel

Solution: Joel, carriers actually cluster devices so it would be easy to monitor who get notifications and who don’t. With my previous employer, devices were clustered based on IMEI and I know other carriers cluster devices by area. That said, I don’t know how AT&T clusters devices under its network. But as you said, your wife got it and you didn’t, so I’m almost sure that it doesn’t cluster devices by area. There are things you could try just to rule out the possibility that it is a minor software glitch.

Power Shock

This procedure has been proven to be moderately effective. So, instead of doing the standard reboot, try following the steps below:

  1. While the phone is still On, pop open back panel.
  2. Remove the battery. You will need to leave the phone without battery for at least a minute, but while waiting for the time, do the next step.
  3. Press and hold the Power button for a minute. This will discharge capacitors of stored electricity and refresh the phone’s memory.
  4. Replace the battery and the back panel.
  5. Turn the phone on and wait until it becomes totally operational.
  6. Check for the update through Settings > About phone.

If the procedure above didn’t fix the issue, then proceed to the next procedure.

Wipe Cache Partition

You will not lose any of your data by doing this, instead, all caches will be cleared off forcing the phone to cache new sets of data after boot up. If there was an issue with the phone’s services that handle the update and its information, the following steps may be able to fix it:

  1. Turn the phone off.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up, Home, and Power buttons together.
  3. Release the Power button when the “Galaxy Note 3” screen appears.
  4. Release both the Volume Up and Home buttons when the Android System Recovery screen appears.
  5. Using the Volume Down key, highlight “wipe cache partition” option and press the Power key to select it.
  6. Once the wiping of caches is finished, highlight “reboot system now” and press the Power  button to reboot normally.

Now check for the update. If the phone still says it’s currently running the latest firmware, then it’s the time to call your carrier and ask them when you will get it. The rep will probably ask you to perform Factory Reset and that’s a long shot but you don’t have a choice. So, it’s better you perform the procedure before you call the hotline to shorten your time on the phone.

Factory Reset

There are a few ways to perform factory reset but I always prefer it via the Recovery Mode:

  1. Turn the phone off.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up, Home, and Power buttons together.
  3. Release the Power button when the “Galaxy Note 3” screen appears.
  4. Release both the Volume Up and Home buttons when the Android System Recovery screen appears.
  5. Using the Volume Down key, highlight “wipe date / factory reset” option and press the Power key to select it.
  6. Highlight “delete all user data” and press the Power button.
  7. Once the Master Reset is done, highlight “Reboot system now” and press the Power button the reboot the phone.

With the phone still fresh and has nothing in its memory, connect to WiFi and search for the update. If still nothing, call your carrier. At least, you have exhausted all possible ways to pull the update down.

#2. System update interrupted

Problem: Hi guys, I own a Note 3 from AT&T and I tried to download the update twice already. The first time I tried to download it the phone already showed 91% and it was cut off for some reason. I tried to download it again and it didn’t even reach 91%, just 78% and it was again cut off. I’m so disappointed that I can’t just update my phone to the latest version because of this. Why does it happen, by the way? And how can I update my phone? Hoping for your response.Mildred

Solution:  I understand how frustrating it is, Mildred, but that’s just technology; sometimes it just won’t work however you try. There are, however, ways to remedy the issue or workarounds just to update your phone and I will guide you through some of them.

Use Different Connection

There are always, at least, two ways to connect your Note 3 to the internet: mobile data and Wi-Fi. Try to use the other to download the update, but before you do that, please follow these steps:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, and then tap the General tab.
  3. Tap Application Manager.
  4. Swipe to left or right to display contents of the All tab.
  5. Scroll to and tap Download Manager.
  6. Tap Clear Cache.
  7. Tap Clear Data, and then OK.

Once you already cleared both the cache and data of the Download Manager, connect to the internet using the other method. If you used mobile data to download the update before, you should use Wi-Fi this time. Now, try to download the update again and if it’s still interrupted, you should consider using KIES to update  your phone.

#3. Messaging app crashes

Problem: I just update my Galaxy Note 3 to Android 4.4 KitKat but I can’t seem to get the Messaging app working. Every time I type texts, it will start to freeze for a few seconds then it automatically closes. I have to open it again but the cycle continues. I don’t know what to do. Do you have any suggestions on how to fix this? I’m pretty sure this started after the update because I texted my sister the update was available before I actually downloaded it. Thanks.Zyra

Solution: It could be just a minor glitch with the app, Zyra. I prepared a couple of procedures here for you to follow and I hope the problem would be fixed. Otherwise, feel free to email us back referencing this post so that I could provide  you a different solution. But for now, let’s do the basic:

Clear Cache and Data

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, and then tap the General tab.
  3. Tap Application Manager.
  4. Swipe to left or right to display contents of the All tab.
  5. Scroll to and tap Messaging.
  6. Tap Force Close button first.
  7. Tap Clear Cache. (The next step will delete your settings and some of your messaging data.)
  8. Tap Clear Data, and the OK.
  9. Launch the Messaging app once again and see if it still crashes.

If the problem persists after doing the steps above, try the next one.

Wipe Cache Partition

Since the problem is related to the recent update, there is a big possibility that some data were corrupted during the process. We need to clear those data so the phone would be forced to cache fresher sets app data. Follow these:

  1. Turn the phone off.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up, Home, and Power buttons together.
  3. Release the Power button when the “Galaxy Note 3” screen appears.
  4. Release both the Volume Up and Home buttons when the Android System Recovery screen appears.
  5. Using the Volume Down key, highlight “wipe cache partition” option and press the Power key to select it.
  6. Once the wiping of caches is finished, highlight “reboot system now” and press the Power  button to reboot normally.

Of course, there is always a possibility that this wouldn’t work. But if the problem persists, you have no other choice but to perform a Factory Reset just to bring the phone back to its default settings. You may lose all your apps, contacts and data so make a backup before you do this.

#4. Phone dialer freezes

Problem: I just updated my Note 3 and when I tried to dial a number, it froze. I have to reboot to be able to use the phone again. The thing is, the phone is fine when taking up calls, I mean I didn’t encounter any problems when I took a couple of calls from my brother but when I dialed a number, that’s the time it would freeze. I am a very busy person (two jobs and a full-time mom and wife) so I don’t have time to go to any AT&T store and have the phone checked. So, if you have any suggestions how to solve this problem, I would gladly try them. Thanks.Jennifer

Solution: Don’t worry Jennifer, the procedures I will provide below won’t take five minutes to do so you still have time for your family and your job. This issue is not really so common, however, it could be easy to fix. When you hit that phone icon on your Note 3, there are at least two services that run–the dialer (or the phone itself) and the dialer storage, where all your local (local, in this case, means your phone’s memory) contacts are saved. If either of the two won’t work properly, your phone freezes. So, this is what you’re going to do first:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, and then tap the General tab.
  3. Tap Application Manager.
  4. Swipe to left or right to display contents of the All tab.
  5. Scroll to and tap Dialer.
  6. Tap Force Close.
  7. Tap Clear Data, and the OK.

Now, try to dial a number and see if the phone still freezes. If so, then we have to go after the dialer storage service. However, you may lose all contacts saved in your phone’s memory so you need to back them up. Here’s how:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Contacts, then the Contacts tab.
  3. Tap the Menu key, and then choose Import/Export.
  4. Tap Export to SD Card.
  5. You’re done copying your local contacts.

This time, you need to clear the data of the dialer storage:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, and then tap the General tab.
  3. Tap Application Manager.
  4. Swipe to left or right to display contents of the All tab.
  5. Scroll to and tap Dialer Storage.
  6. Tap Clear Data, and then OK.

Once done, dial a number and see if the phone freezes. Factory Reset is your last resort if the problem still persists after this.

#5. Phone is very slow

Problem: I was actually excited upon hearing that my carrier, AT&T, would be rolling out the update for my Note 3. The moment the update was made available, I downloaded it immediately to become one of the first few people to do so and to avoid server congestion later on. The download went smooth as well as the installation of the update but my phone is now very, very slow that it takes a few seconds to a minute to just open the Messaging app or any app installed. Is the phone supposed to act this way after every update?Marlon

Solution: When it comes to performance issues after an update, I would include TouchWiz as one of the culprits. I already encountered a lot of performance problems caused by Samsung’s proprietary UI and majority of them happened after an update. So, I would suggest you to clear its cache and data first:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, and then tap the General tab.
  3. Tap Application Manager.
  4. Swipe to left or right to display contents of the All tab.
  5. Scroll to and tap Touchwiz.
  6. Tap Clear Cache. (The next step will delete all your custom Home screen.)
  7. Tap Clear Data, then OK.
  8. Reboot the phone.

If the problem still persists after this, at least, we’re proven wrong about the Touchwiz but the hunt for the real culprit starts. To rule out the possibility that your previous app installation is the problem, we need to boot to Safe Mode:

  1. Turn the device off.
  2. Press and hold the Power key.
  3. When ‘GALAXY Note 3’ appears on the screen, release the Power key. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  4. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  5. ‘Safe mode’ will display in the bottom left corner of the screen. Release the Volume down key when you see ‘Safe Mode.’

Now, try to observe the phone’s performance while in Safe Mode; if it runs normally, then one of the third-party apps was causing the problem, otherwise, you will need to perform a factory reset. If the culprit were an app, then try to find that app and uninstall or disable it. However, if you can’t find it and if you think it would take so much, time a Factory Reset will solve this problem for you.

#6. Apps gone after the update

Question: Just a quick question, where did all my apps go? I just updated my phone to Android 4.4 KK and when I’m done, all my apps were gone including the Messaging and Play Store apps. Does it mean I installed a corrupt update? Help me please.Maurice

Answer: You updated your phone properly, I believe, but depending on the number of the apps you installed prior to the update, the phone may take time to optimize all of them. The solution to your problem is REBOOT. Keep on rebooting until all your apps are back. If this doesn’t solve it, email us back and tell us more about the problem.

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