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Samsung Galaxy S3 Problems, Questions, Errors and Solutions [Part 41]

Welcome to the 41st part in our series of troubleshooting articles dedicated to the Samsung Galaxy S3.We have already provided hundreds of solutions to problems faced by our readers regarding this particular model and it appears we will be providing hundreds more. The reason why this series has stretched this far is that each problem is unique and needs a particular approach in solving it. In this latest installment we will tackle the latest emails sent to us by our readers since part 40 was published.

Galaxy S3

If you own a Galaxy S3 or any other Android device for that matter feel free to send us an email at [email protected]. We will be more than happy to assist you with any concern that you may have regarding your device. This is a free service we are offering with no strings attached. We do however ask that when you send us an email try to be as detailed as possible so that an accurate assessment can be made and the correct solution can be given to you.

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S3 Play Store Won’t Load

Problem: Hello!  I just bought a new straight talk phone from Wal-Mart.  It’s the second one I have purchased because the Play Store won’t load.  Just that spinning circle of death I call it.  Any suggestions or am I going to have to return it for the third time?  Any help would be appreciated!! Thank you!

Solution: The first thing you need to do is to make sure that your phone is connected to a stable Internet connection. Try opening a YouTube video or browse a couple of websites on your phone to verify if you have a good connection. The next thing you want to do is to check if this issue only occurs in your particular Google account. To check on this try logging in with a different Google account on your phone then access the Google Play Store.

Once you have verified that your Internet connection is good and that your Google account does not have a problem it is time to troubleshoot your phone. After each of the troubleshooting step check and see if you can access the Google Play Store. If you don’t have access then proceed to the next step.

The first thing to do is to check for any software updates and install them accordingly. These updates contain improvements and bug fixes that may help resolve the issue.

Your next step is to clear the cache and data of the Google Play Store application.

  • From the home screen, tap the Menu key.
  • Tap Settings.
  • Tap the More tab.
  • Scroll to and tap Application manager.
  • Swipe left to the All tab.
  • Scroll to and tap the Google Play Store application.
  • Tap Clear cache.
  • Tap Clear data.

If the problem still occurs then uninstall the updates to the Google Play Store application.

  • From the home screen, tap the Menu key.
  • Tap Settings.
  • Tap the More tab.
  • Scroll to and tap Application manager.
  • Swipe left to the All tab.
  • Scroll to and tap the Google Play Store application.
  • Tap Uninstall updates.

Clear the cache of your phone’s Google Play Services

  • From the home screen, tap the Menu key.
  • Tap Settings.
  • Tap the More tab.
  • Scroll to and tap Application manager.
  • Swipe left to the All tab.
  • Scroll to and tap the Google Play Services application.
  • Tap Clear cache.

Check if your Download Manager is disabled

  • From the home screen, tap the Menu key.
  • Tap Settings.
  • Tap the More tab.
  • Scroll to and tap Application manager.
  • Swipe left to the All tab.
  • Scroll to and tap the Download Manager application.
  • Tap enable if it is disabled

One final troubleshooting step that you can do is to do a factory reset on your phone. Make sure to back up your phone data before proceeding.

  • Turn off the device.
  • Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, Power key.
  • When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  • When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  • Press Power button to select.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘delete all user data.’
  • Press Power button to select and start the master reset. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.

S3 Won’t Connect To Mobile Data

Problem: My galaxy S3 had a previous service carrier of AT&T. When I changed my provider to Straight Talk (bring your own phone plan) is when I started experiencing trouble connecting to the internet. I can always connect via Wi-Fi. I can connect to 4G, but it is a very slim chance of finding 4G in my area. My problem is that I cannot connect to the internet I pay for with the straight talk plan. I know other people with the straight service that have no difficulties whatsoever. I have contacted straight talk customer service and they guided me to change APN settings. I have also googled and researched to find a solution, but have been unsuccessful. I would like to be able to access the internet at any time, being that I do pay for that service. Any answers or even suggestions would be helpful and extremely appreciated. Thank you kindly. “Feeling Disconnected”

Solution: Have you tried calling up Straight Talk and asking them if your particular area has 4G coverage? Checking for network coverage is the first thing that needs to be checked in cases like this. If they say that your area has sufficient coverage then try to do a bit of an experiment. If you are not getting any 4G signal at your home then try going someplace else that is known to have a good 4G reception( the mall or your workplace) then check your phone if it can get a good 4G connection.  If your 4G connection is good in other places then it is not a phone issue but a network coverage issue.

If your phone is still not getting a good 4G connection even in places that have strong 4G coverage then you will need to do a factory reset on your phone then enter the APN settings again. Make sure to back up all data stored in your phone before proceeding as they will be erased in the process. You should also have a fully charged battery and m=you must perform this in an area with good 4G coverage.

  • Turn off the device.
  • Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, Power key.
  • When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  • When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  • Press Power button to select.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘delete all user data.’
  • Press Power button to select and start the master reset. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.

After the factory reset contact Straight Talk and have them walk you through the APN settings. You should be able to get a good 4G connection after this.

S3 Won’t Fully Charge

Problem: Hi droidguy my Samsung galaxy s3 won’t fully charge it charges to 80- 90% will not last real long will last a good part of day with my data turned off and using the phone very little I’ve tried a couple batteries oem and aftermarket same problem exactly with both batteries the last 20% drains real fast. Phone is 1.75 year old

Solution: Is your phone still running on stock firmware? Sometimes if you are using a custom ROM on your phone there will be some problems with the battery level indicator. Try to check some of the known bugs of your custom ROM if your phone is running on one.

If your phone is still running on stock firmware then follow the troubleshooting steps below to resolve the issue. Make sure your phone is running on the latest software update before proceeding.

Clear your phone’s RAM

  • Turn off the phone
  • Take out the battery
  • Press and hold the power button for at least 3 minutes
  • Reinsert battery
  • Turn on phone

Charge your phone with the original Samsung charger and see if it reaches 100%.

If the problem still persists then you might want to consider doing a factory reset on your phone. Make sure to back up your phone data before performing this procedure.

  • Turn off the device.
  • Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, Power key.
  • When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  • When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  • Press Power button to select.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘delete all user data.’
  • Press Power button to select and start the master reset. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.

Your phone should be able to charge up to 100% now if the issue was caused by the software. If the problem still persists then you should bring your phone to an authorized service center for checking.

S3 Won’t Charge or Boot

Problem: What’s up, I have a problem with my phone. It fell out of my pocket while I was sitting in a chair and turned off.  The screen was previously cracked.  I tried to turn it back on but nothing happened, no red indicator light and no screen.  When I plug the phone in to charge, the red indicator light does not turn on and the screen does not turn on.  I took the battery out and tried to plug it in without the battery and the red light did turn on, so the light works.  After I unplugged it and put the battery back in I tried to turn it on again and nothing. The same thing happens when I try to charge it, no light or screen.  I know it is probably broken but is there any way I can get pictures and contacts off of it?

Solution: If your phone has a microSD card and your camera stores the photos in the card then you can simply take out the card and inset it in your PC using a microSD card adapter. You will be able to see your photos. Another way to access your photos is if you have enabled the cloud sync of Google Photos. If you use Google+ on your phone then you be asked regarding the cloud sync of your photos. If you have enabled this then your photos can be accessed on your Google+ account under photos.

Your contacts can be accessed by opening your Gmail email from any browser. Click on the upper left corner under the Gmail logo and you will see three choices which are Gmail, Contacts, and Tasks. Click on Contacts. From here you will see your Contacts list.

S3 Won’t Boot After Falling In Water

Problem: Hi, I have a question. My mobile phone was in water but I pulled my phone from water in about 20 seconds. So it worked fine, but after one week I couldn’t turn it on. When I put it to charge the battery I can see that battery is charged but I can’t turn on the phone, because button for turning it on doesn’t want to work. So my question is: is there any other way to turn on my phone or do I have to take it on service? Thank you.

Solution: When a phone gets dropped in water there are instances when the damage does not show itself immediately. It may take a couple of days or even weeks for the effects to be noticed. In your case it is most likely that some hardware component inside your phone got damaged after a week cause by a short circuit. Your best option is to bring your phone to an authorized service center for checking.

The next time your phone gets dropped in water try to apply the following tips below.

  • Take your phone out of the water immediately.
  • Remove the battery, SIM card, and microSD.
  • Using a paper towel wipe your phone until no more liquid is present.
  • Immerse your phone in a bowl of rice or desiccant for 48 hours. This absorbs the moisture inside your phone.
  • Replace the battery then try turning on your phone

S3 Messaging Issues After Update

Problem: To whom it may concern. Hi! Can you please help me? I recently updated my Samsung S3 (have no idea which version it is) but now I’m experiencing problems with my messaging app. When I try opening it, it shows the messaging bar at the top but the rest is black and then goes back to the home screen after a few seconds. I’ve tried restarting my phone and force stopping the app but nothing seems to work. Please advice. Thank you for your time and hope to hear from you soon. Best Regards

Solution: Whenever a phone gets a major software update and issues pop up after the update has completed it is always a good idea to perform a factory reset on the phone. The reason why these issues are present is because data from the old software version is still present in your phone and has not been completely removed. This causes a conflict with the new software version and in your case causes the messaging app issue. A factory reset will completely delete this old data. You should however back up all your personal data first (photos, contacts, files, videos, etc.)as it will be deleted in the process.

  • Turn off the device.
  • Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, Power key.
  • When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  • When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  • Press Power button to select.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘delete all user data.’
  • Press Power button to select and start the master reset. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.

Once the factory reset has finished the messaging issue should disappear.

S3 Issues After KitKat Update

Problem: I started noticing weird stuff after my upgrade to Kit Kat, but I can’t say for sure it’s related. The first thing I noticed is that the phone was draining battery while using my GPS app even while plugged in. It used to charge while GPS was in use. I bought a new 2.1 A charger and the jury is out on that…it seems sporadic. Now I’m noticing that sometimes I will plug it in and it shows charging, but the battery percent hardly moves at all. If I restart the phone, it seems to start acting better. Can anyone suggest what might be going on here?

Solution: If the problem occurred right after you updated your software to KitKat then you should consider doing a factory reset first. Your phone may still have system data form the old software version which is causing a conflict with the new software version. The only way to completely remove this old system data is by performing a factory reset. Just make sure to back up your data first before proceeding.

  • Turn off the device.
  • Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, Power key.
  • When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  • When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  • Press Power button to select.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘delete all user data.’
  • Press Power button to select and start the master reset. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.

If the issue still persists then try to replace your battery with a new one. Make sure to get an original Samsung battery.

S3 Can’t Make Calls Most Of The Time

Problem: I need help. 80% of the time I try to call someone and I can’t. For example when I call a friend my phone doesn’t ring it’s just silent and then after a few seconds I hear one beep and then the call ends. With messaging too, I try to send a message and it says “Message not sent”. I’ve gotten my SIM card changed by T-Mobile when I wanted to solve the problem but it’s still not working.

Solution: Replacing the SIM card eliminates any SIM card related causes. The next step that you should do is to determine whether the problem occurs only in a particular area or in any location that you are at. Try placing a call or sending a message in your home, the mall, or your workplace. If the problem only exists in one particular area then it may be a coverage issue. Try to contact T-Mobile and inquire if they have good coverage in the area you are having problem placing calls.

If T-Mobile confirms that coverage is good in the area that you are having problems then the issue may be phone related. Check for any software updates available for your phone and install them before proceeding.

The first thing that you need to do is to find out if this is caused by a software problem. To do this you must perform a factory reset on your phone. Be sure to back up your data before proceeding.

  • Turn off the device.
  • Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, Power key.
  • When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  • When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  • Press Power button to select.
  • Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘delete all user data.’
  • Press Power button to select and start the master reset. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.

If after performing the factory reset the issue still persists then this may already be caused by a faulty hardware. In this case you will have to bring your phone to an authorized service center for checking.

S3 Retrieving Lost Data After Factory Reset

Problem: Hi, I have upgraded my Samsung Galaxy S3, without taking the backup. I lost all my Contacts, Colour Notes files and other data. Is there any chance to recover the lost data, during firmware upgrading. Can you please help me?

Solution: I’m assuming that you are now running a custom firmware on your phone since all your data got deleted. There is a chance that your updated Contact list has been saved. You can check on this by opening your Gmail email on any web browser and click on the Contacts field from the drop down menu located on the upper left side.

If your phone has a microSD and your Camera saves photos on this card then you will still have access to your photos. As for your other data it is difficult to retrieve them once a new firmware has been installed in your phone.

S3 Cannot Send MMS

Problem: Hello, I just recently bought a sprint Samsung galaxy s3 and activated it on straight talk and I am having trouble sending pictures.

Solution: Since this is a Sprint phone then it must have the Sprint MMS settings installed. If you are going to use this phone on the Straight Talk network then you should use the Straight Talk MMS settings. For the correct settings contact the technical support team of Straight Talk. The representative will guide you in getting the correct settings to your phone.

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