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How To Fix Freezing, Lag, Slow Performance Problems on Samsung Galaxy S4 [Part 1]

Welcome to our post for Samsung Galaxy S4 Freezing, Lag, Slow Performance Problems troubleshooter series. This post is intended to focus solely on one of the common problems a reader may experience while using the vaunted Samsung Galaxy S4. As the title suggests, we aim to streamline our next posts with emphasis on the specific set of problems. Problems caused by or resulting to freezing is discussed in this thread so read on!

S4 in hand

If you are one of the users who encounters a problem with your device, let us know. We offer solutions for Android-related problems for free so if you have an issue with your Android device, simply contact us by email at [email protected] and we will try to publish our answers in the next posts. We cannot guarantee a quick response so if your issue is time sensitive, please find another way to resolve your problem. 

When describing the problem, please be as detailed as possible so we can easily pinpoint a relevant solution. If you can, kindly include the exact error messages you are getting to give us an idea where to start.

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Problem #1: Samsung Galaxy S4 freezes and randomly reboots

Hello. I bought a Samsung Galaxy S4 Active off eBay (brand new) and recently the phone has started to freeze (not allow me to get the screen to turn on until I reboot) or just reboot on its own at random times of the day. A little while ago I also lost the ability to make outgoing calls until I rebooted it and incoming calls were not working. This seems to be better lately but this reboot issue is bugging me out. It isn’t getting stuck in a loop or anything but it reboots a few times a day now.

Would you recommend just doing a hard reset? If so what is the best way to back up my pictures and contacts?

Or do you have any other suggestions? I bought it to the store and they said it appeared fine because nothing bad happened while I was there.

Thanks for any help you can give. — Carrie

Solution: Hi Carrie. A smartphone rebooting itself or freezing intermittently can be a sign of an on-going software or hardware problem. The best way to isolate which of these two is the real cause is by doing these troubleshooting steps:

  • Power up the phone in Safe Mode.
  • Wipe the phone’s cache partition.
  • Restoring the phone to factory settings/Master reset.

I don’t want to go into details but you can visit our previous post in this link on how to do them individually.

These are possible solutions that have been proven effective time and again. Doing them is also a good way to determine whether or not the problem has a software side. If the problem continues, you have to consider having the unit replaced or repaired by a professional due hardware issue.

In creating a back up of your files, we recommend that you use Helium – App Sync and Backup which you can download from the Google Play Store. It’s the most convenient way to create a copy of your files that we have come across so far.

Problem #2: Screen Mirroring issue on Samsung Galaxy S4 causing TV to freeze

Hi there. I’m having problems between my Samsung Galaxy S4 and my Samsung smart TV UE55H6400. I can connect the two and I’m watching something on the internet, but then after about an hour, the screen on the TV freezes and my phone says that the screen mirroring has been disabled. Not sure if issue is with the phone or TV. If you could offer any tips that would be great. Thanks. — Angie

Solution: Hi Angie. There are a handful of reasons why Screen Mirroring on your phone fails, which resulted to the TV freezing. One of the most common causes for Screen Mirroring problems is an outdated app version. Make sure that Screen Mirroring app is fully updated.

If the phone is already running an updated version, try to delete the app’s cache and data and try again. Here’s how:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Tap More tab.
  • Tap Application manager.
  • Go to the left and tap All tab.
  • Look for the app in question and tap it.
  • Tap Clear Cache.
  • Tap Clear Date.

Problem #3: Apps not responding/freezing issue on apps on Samsung Galaxy S4

Hello. I am currently having problems accessing my contacts on my Samsung S4. Every time I open the contacts and scroll down, it will scroll for a little bit then it will get stuck on one contact and duplicate it for however long I keep scrolling. If it gets stuck on John Doe, then I will end up with hundreds of John Doe’s in my contacts. I just recently found this out because my phone is synced with my Gmail account and I had 25,000 contacts. I’ve erased the duplicates and only have a little of 300 contacts now. I am still encountering the problem though. Also, sometimes my contacts won’t even open. It will freeze for a while and then say it’s not responding. Please help! Thanks. — Amanda

Hello kind people at theDroidGuy! I have a frequently recurring problem with my phone. I use it daily as a music player and sometimes the music player freezes up, completely stopping playback and the controls are barely responsive, if at all. The music does not resume, even though I pause and un-pause the music, change songs, bring up the player (I usually use the widget player, 2×2 ). I use the PlayerPro app instead of

the standard music player because I thought that I would solve the issue by switching player. Alas, nay. The only working “solution” is restarting the phone, but it can just as easily freeze up again, minutes after resuming playback. I experience no other issues or bugs, that I know of.

Please do try to help me, I am at my wit’s end here…! Thank you for your time. — David

Hey. I have a Galaxy S4 and I’ve had it since May of this year and I’ve never experienced problems with the opening of my Gallery. Whenever i click on it, it will either open and go blank or it will load all my albums but when i click on one my phone will freeze then the screen will go blank and then something will pop up and say ” Gallery is not responding” what can i do to fix this problem? — Akinard67

Solution: Hi Amanda, David, and Akinard67. You may have seemingly different issues but they all have the same solution. We recommend that you clear the app’s cache and data first to see if that will work (please refer to the steps provided for Problem#2). Deleting an individual app’s cache and data is an effective first step in your case because majority of similar cases can be traced to corrupt app cache and data.

Your next solution should be to delete the phone’s cache partition. Just like clearing an app’s cache and data, this procedure is usually done to deal with multiple apps at a time. This is also recommended if a user notices slow performance problem after a major update. If you haven’t tried deleting your S4’s cache partition, here are the steps:

  • Turn off the phone completely.
  • Press and hold the buttons Volume Up, Home, and Power together.
  • Once the phone vibrates, release both the Home and Power keys but continue holding the Volume Up button.
  • When the Android System Recovery shows on the screen, release the Volume Up key.
  • Using the Volume Down key, highlight the option wipe cache partition and press the Power key to select it.
  • When the wiping of the cache partition is finished, highlight Reboot system now and hit the Power key to confirm it.

Performing a master reset or factory reset follows if nothing works after doing these two solutions.

Problem #4: Samsung Galaxy S4 started freezing when loading apps after an update

Hi. I received automatic updates for my software on my S4 Active. At first I was scared maybe it’ll malfunction for some reasons and sadly it did after I updated the software! Most of the times it would freeze even I’m just going to open the Gallery. Some of my apps also malfunctions, it would freeze then there’s a pop up asking to close it or not. I wanted to go back to the old software 🙁 Could you help me with this please? Looking forward for your reply. — Liceralde

Solution: Hi Liceralde. Please follow the solutions for Problem #3. Additionally, you can also try to further isolate the problem if it’s due to a corrupt SD card by removing it temporarily from your phone. It’s been noted that some Android phones suffer errors in their SD cards following Lollipop update.

Problem #5: Samsung Galaxy S4 having trouble sending text message and randomly freezing after messing up Knox app

I was reading through the list of issues the S4 is having and I do show for a few of these….I’ll be as specific as I can.

I have had this phone for a while and just recently switched it from a contract phone from Verizon to a prepaid with them. That was yesterday afternoon or the day before at most. Up until today I have never had any issues with you a phone.

Now I apparently should not have messed around with preloaded Knox application cause that had me lost for a while earlier today. It slightly changed my screens but I almost could not tell and it was limiting what I could do. I wound up un installing it and it prompted me to restart device.

At this point this is when I realized my text messages had to been going in or out of my phone and just showed a load bar under the message. After the restart of the phone it seemed to go back to normal before I messed with the Knox app.

That only lasted a few minutes. I got a couple text bit about ten minutes later I am stuck with the same issue involving the text issues. I restarted again and same issue. …it got good and sent and received and a few minutes later it started to freeze up again.

Side note: Everything other than messages is working and functioning fine. Other than a few noticeable glitches which I guess is definitely slightly abnormal.

I contacted Samsung and they walked me through a cache wipe from the load screen with the green robot. I thought this had worked as a little over an hour had passed. Then it started to freeze or take upwards of twenty minutes to send one message out. They told me to do a factory reset but I can’t do that unless I am sure it’s the last option.

Plus I asked that he tells me before I do that what the problem is so I know and it doesn’t continue to happen anyways. He said it seems to have third party download.

I did double check the Google Play Store and these were the following apps I got:

  • Clean master
  • CM security

And a Google Talk play bar–the one like my S5 has.

Now it’s been about a few hours after speaking with the Samsung peeps and my phone is operating get normal with everything.

One last thing that might be worth a mention. The CM security is now set as the system administrator. And under my settings tabs it will not let me uninstall or disconnect. (I only tried to see if it would help. I downloaded the same apps on my S5 with not any issues at all. Anything I can do to check verify it troubleshoot if it happens again? Or is it looking like the factory reset….whom whomp — Bryan

Solution: Hi Bryan. There’s no better solution than perform a factory reset. Because you cannot remove Knox from the system unless you root the phone, the bug affecting your phone’s Messaging app is probably associated with Knox’s own system files. A factory reset will restore all the normal functions of the phone to its original state, which is free from Knox inference.

Problem #6: Samsung Galaxy S4 freezes and shows “System process isn’t responding, would you like to close it?” error when charging with SIM card inserted

Hello. I have a very strange charging problem with my S4. When i charge it without shutting it down, it will freeze and come up with an error message “System process isn’t responding, would you like to close it?”. If I remove the SIM card then it charges properly, same thing if i shut it down with the SIM card in the phone! The funniest thing is that if i exchange the SIM card with my wife’s SIM card that belongs to a different cell company (Vodafone Greece, my company is Cosmote Greece), the phone will charge properly even when it’s on!

Any idea what could be causing this? Is it possible that my company’s SIM cards have different voltage characteristics that don’t allow the phone to charge properly? (i have tried multiple SIM cards from my phone company, they all behave the same). Thanks for reading this. — Alex

Solution: Hi Alex. It’s our first time to hear such a problem. Have you tried checking if the phone of your wife does the same thing when your SIM card is inserted to it? This may be an isolated case in your phone so you can also try to perform a master reset/factory reset and see what happens. Please let us know if that will fix it. We will update this post once we receive your reply. Thanks!

Problem #7: Samsung Galaxy S4 freezes during startup and log off, scrolls by itself, and type randomly on its own

Hi. I have been having some problems with my Galaxy S4 Active. The phone has glitches. When I go to use the phone to send a text or to Google it will scroll by itself, or when I text it will start typing random things on its own. It freezes up when I try to log off my phone and turn it back on. Doesn’t freeze but for about 30 seconds. I have had the phone nearly 6 months. I downloaded antivirus protection and it shows no viruses.

Thanks . — Brittany

Hi. My S4 is 8 months old and for about 3 months now my screen chooses when it wants me to use it for text or Facebook messages and even Google. Sometimes, I can only use selected letters and numbers and other times it goes mad and randomly chooses numbers and letters and clicked through screens and other times it freezes and I have to turn off my screen by using the button on the right side to stop it. — Olly

Solution: Hi Brittany and Olly. A smartphone with a defective touchscreen can sometimes manifest the problem in ways you have described yours. If you are using a protective screen, try to see if removing it will help you resolve the problem. Depending on the condition of the display as well as how the protective screen has been applied, issues like you have can happen randomly. You also want to determine if a broader operating system issue is causing the problem.

First, we recommend that you remove the SD card and observe the phone. There have been some rare instances wherein corrupt SD cards appears to be connected to how some apps works. Make sure that you safely remove the SD card by unmounting it properly.

Second, you can do a soft reset by turning off the phone and removing the battery for at least 30 seconds. Doing so refreshes the system and usually resolves issues that appear out of nowhere.

Third, clear the cache of apps involved and see what happens. The steps are provided above.

Finally, perform a factory reset if nothing appears to work.

Problem #8: Multiple issues on Samsung Galaxy S4 including random slow performance, freezing, pop up errors, etc

I’m very old, so please be patient with me, okay? I don’t know what the eff I’m doing, and I have like three device administrators. I have no idea why I HAD options for lock screen but now have only one, and it looks like I “ghost” voicemail options, teasing me, saying I can change my forwarding calls to a certain number. But when I tried twice, both times it told me it was an error. I’m not sure if it’s MetroPCS issue or Samsung. I have an app lock and it randomly goes pops up. While I’m using my phone, the phone freezes. There are other issues. I’m dealing with tons of crap right now. In cyber space, everything I had that was in any device I owned, in files, emails, photos, accounts, passwords, everything was hacked, continuously. Why I’m bitching about this I guess is because having all these bugs in a pretty pricey, what I considered high end phone, while I thought I was taking all the precautions I should take for security. I wouldn’t be surprised if all this bullshit is just…well…who knows…anyway…anyway my advice? Besides maybe taking a few sedatives and anti-psychotics and seeing a therapist? I’m sorry for rambling, but I could be having all these “bugs” because maybe it’s spyware or maybe this phone is crap or maybe I’m nuts or stupid….All of the above….– F.U.

Solution: Hi F.U. Multiple issues can best be resolved by wiping everything off the phone via a Master reset or Factory reset. This is especially useful since you also suspect that your phone may be infected with a malware.

Moving forward, be mindful of third party apps that you install in your phone. With tens of thousands of them out there, even just a single malicious app can open your phone to more similar ones. Most of malicious apps today are trojans, meaning they serve as doors for a hacker to install more viruses, spyware, etc on a phone at a later time without the user knowing it. If you are not familiar with an app, never install it. Try to reach out to friends and consult them what’s a reputable app to download for your particular interest.

Alternatively, you can email us again for a list of trusted apps that suit your hobby and interest in the future.

Problem #9: Samsung Galaxy S4 freezes during startup after letting it cool off after intensive usage

If ever my S4 gets hot and laggy (from excessive constant use) I shut it all the way off to let it cool down and clear out. The problem lies in turning it back on. Once the phone loads to the lock screen it essentially freezes. The buttons won’t work, physical or the touch buttons. The screen doesn’t respond to my touch, but I know that it senses it because the buttons glow on touch. This lasts for about 5 minutes before the screen Flickers and everything appears to be normal again. I hope that all made sense. Please help — Brandon

Solution: Hi Brandon. If a phone gets too warm, it may be overheating which usually manifest itself in slow performance of apps or the phone in general. Try to give your phone a longer cool off time after using it at a stretch to further lower the temperature of the processors. You can also try to delete the cache partition of the phone to ensure that the cache of each app is fresh.

Problem #10: Samsung Galaxy S4 freezes when sending and receiving text message

Every time I go to text one friend, my phone freezes for about 30 seconds. It only happens with him. The thread of messages is quite huge & we have shared several photos also.

I tried deleting the whole thread of messages today & it has jammed my phone 10 times! To the point I’ve needed to restart every single time. I went to my provider (Vodaphone) who have advised to back up & restore but I would like to avoid this option if possible.

I also don’t seem to be able to send photos sometimes via text (it’s very random) & can’t text my mum at all. Yet she can text me. Are you able to help with this? –Emma

Solution: Hi Emma. If you are unable to delete the message thread itself, try clearing the messaging app’s cache and data. If you are using a third party messaging app like WhatsApp, or Facebook Messenger, re-installing it will also help.

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