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Galaxy Note 5 capacitive buttons not working, other issues

Samsung’s flagship, the Galaxy Note 5, is a stable device but we continue to receive requests for assistance from some users.

Note 5

Here’s another collection of #GalaxyNote5 problems that we tackle today:

  1. Galaxy Note 5 capacitive buttons not working
  2. Galaxy Note 5 screen flickers when in low brightness level
  3. Galaxy Note 5 locked out and Google Android Device Manager password not working
  4. Galaxy Note 5 restarts on its own when Snapchat loads | Galaxy Note 5 overheating issue
  5. Sprint Galaxy Note 5 voicemail app not working

If you are looking for solutions to your own #Android issue, you can contact us by using the link provided at the bottom of this page, or you can install our free app from Google Play Store.

When describing your issue, 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. If you have already tried some troubleshooting steps before emailing us, make sure to mention them so we can skip them in our answers.


Problem #1: Galaxy Note 5 capacitive buttons not working

First off, I purchased my AT&T Note 5 (SM-XN920A 5.1.1) from a friend so no warrantee, exchange or replacement option. My capacitive touch keys are not working nor will they light up. They slowly went out until one day they just stopped completely. I have scoured the internet for answers to no avail and simply need to know if there’s anything else I can do or try and if not is it’s a hardware or software/firmware problem? What exactly do I need to repair?

This seems to be a very common issue so there are a lot of helpful ideas. The top 2 fixes are power saving/ultra power saving settings and touch key light duration under display. I have already examined both these thoroughly. I have also tried tweaking other settings including one-handed operation etc.. For some people disabling Facebook Messenger worked and others by placing the phone in the fridge for a couple of minutes (due to overheating). I tried the Galaxy button lights app..did nothing but currently use app called “back button” in replacement of the back and recent keys. I have tried everything! If you told me to hold the phone above my head, hop on one foot while singing..I am desperate enough to do it. I ultimately wiped cache, tried safe mode and factory reset, still nothing. If it wasn’t for this being a common issue and reading the problem is a setting, firmware or update issue I would have already just concluded that it’s a hardware problem.

If it helps at all, I do not have the S-Pen that came with the Note but used my Note 4 S-Pen n it works on the 2 buttons. Other than that, there isn’t even a flicker at startup.I am at the point of just tired of trying and angers me to think of all the wasted hours on this. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you so so very much. — Natalie

Solution: Hi Natalie. This issue happens from time to time in some Samsung devices but there appears to be no definitive pattern in order for Samsung or other third party technicians like us to pinpoint the exact cause. Your suspicion that the cause may not be hardware at all is founded since drivers (for specific components like the touchscreen or the capacitive buttons) can, technically, get corrupted. A driver is basically a computer program that controls a device or component like a touchscreen. However, we are yet to encounter and document a specific case that points to a bad driver as the culprit. Most of the time, fixing a software-caused issue is relatively easy since a factory reset can simply restore all necessary software settings to default. The fact that factory reset in your case did not resolve the issue is a confirmation that you don’t have a software problem at hand.

The common reasons for touchscreen and capacitive button issues are usually due to hardware malfunction after a device has been dropped or exposed to elements (water, heat, cold temperature). If your Note 5 did not see water or was never dropped, some critical or related components may have simply stopped working properly for some reason. This means that your best shot at getting a resolution is by having the phone repaired. If Samsung repair is out of question, bring the phone to a third party repair shop. We don’t provide hardware diagnostics and troubleshooting in this blog so if you are intent on looking for a solution to this problem, try other online resources.

Problem #2: Galaxy Note 5 screen flickers when in low brightness level

Hello. I have a problem with my Galaxy Note 5. I bought this phone last December, and I have never had problems with it until a few days ago when the bottom half of the screen began flickering. It only does this when the screen is set to the lowest brightness. If I increase the brightness it seems to stops. However, it sometimes doesn’t flicker even when it is set to the lowest brightness, but the screen now has a very faint permanent line that divides the flickering bottom half from the mostly normal top half. I say “mostly normal” because recently I noticed that there’s a part that also flickers on the top half of the screen.

I just woke up a few days ago and found it doing that. Over time I have dropped it more times than I can count but never did it give me any problems. And I’m sure I didn’t drop it in the last month or so. I don’t think it’s a hardware problem, though I can’t say for sure if it’s a software problem. I haven’t installed any new apps and I only updated the OS once. I tried factory reset and uninstalled many apps and disabled hardware overlays and none of that has worked. Is there something else I could try?

Thank you. — Schneider

Solution: Hi Schneider. This issue appears across several Samsung devices and does not look like isolated to any particular model, carrier, or firmware version. The cause of the problem may vary per case so there’s no known official resolution.

The thing that interests us though is the fact that you mention of seeing a permanent line on the screen at this time. That might suggest that you have a bad LCD or touchscreen, which also results to flickering issue when you change the brightness level.

The general rule in dealing with an Android issue is that, if the basic software troubleshooting won’t fix it, hardware is most likely to blame. Like what we tell Natalie above, if the things you did such as booting in safe mode, wiping the cache, and factory reset did not resolve your problem, you can safely assume that the screen is faulty. Make sure that you contact Samsung or the relevant party for a resolution.

 

Related reading: Galaxy S7 screen flickers if brightness is set to low

 

Problem #3: Galaxy Note 5 locked out and Google Android Device Manager password not working

I went on vacation to Italy and after a couple of days my phone got accidentally locked (I had been using lock screen with keypad without problems). It asked for a recovery password, but the strange thing is that keypad disappeared and there is no place I could type in the password. Only a dark box with blinking cursor, but when touching it, it looks like touch screen is not working. However emergency call button and related keypad is instead working. I also noticed today that with long press I have options for paste and clipboard, but I’m still not able to use it. I reset password from Google>Android>Devicemanager, but still cannot type it in.

There was an upgrade pushed ~2 months ago, and despite observing some new slowness, there was no instability. Another upgrade was still pending though, and I was not willing to take it, so I suspect something could be related to it.

Is there any way to restore keypad to unlock the screen?

Or is there any option to clear the password or unlock from android/devicemanager? I didn’t setup a Samsung account with findmymobile, which I understand would have given me other option to reset password.

Trying to explore all alternatives before going the hard way with factory reset and losing all data.

Also being able to access the file system for data backup would be useful before hard reset.

Thanks in advance for your help! — Davide

Solution: Hi Davide. If the temporary password you created under Android Device Manager did not work, you’re out of luck. You’re only way out now is to do a factory reset. Doing so will delete your files not saved in the cloud or in other device before the lock out. There’s no other known work around for this one unfortunately.

For reference, these are the steps on how to factory reset your Note 5:

  • Turn off your Samsung Galaxy Note 5 completely.
  • Press and hold the Volume Up and the Home buttons first, and then press and hold the Power key.
  • Keep the three buttons pressed and when ‘Samsung Galaxy Note5’ shows, release the Power key but continue holding the other two.
  • Once the Android logo shows, release both the Volume Up and Home buttons.
  • The notice ‘Installing system update’ will show on the screen for 30 to 60 seconds before the Android system recovery screen is shown with its options.
  • Use the Volume Down key to highlight the option ‘Yes — delete all user data’ and press the Power key to select it.
  • When the process is complete, use the Volume Down key to highlight the option ‘Reboot system now’ and hit the Power key to restart the phone.
  • The reboot may take a little longer to complete but don’t worry and wait for the device to become active.

Problem #4: Galaxy Note 5 restarts on its own when Snapchat loads | Galaxy Note 5 overheating issue

I go on SnapChat and click on someone, it shuts the phone down or restarts the phone with either a huge battery loss or complete battery loss. If i try Snapchat again, the problem persists until I plug it to the wall outlet to charge and then try Snapchat. Also, when this happen, my phone starts to overheat. My screen gets hot and the backside of the phone also gets really hot.

I have restarted phone, factory reset, deleted app, reinstalled and upgraded software. Still happens everytime. Sometimes it doesn’t, but suddenly it might.

If my battery is below 60% or around 30% ..it automatically shuts down if Snapchat is used.

I feel it is a battery issue, but when I use the phone in general, the battery has a good life. Even playing PokemonGo, it lasts me long.

The problem has been happening even before PokemonGo existed. So it’s not this app causing it.

Also, secondary problem:

My screen has a light yellow tint. But the tint doesn’t show on the taskbar on the top of the screen. It’s nice pure white where I can see the time, battery, service bars, but everything below that (the display pretty much) is slightly tinted. I’ve tried restarts and factory wipes ..even changing display settings. It still shows. Do help! Regards. — Fahim

Solution: Hi Fahim. To check if the issues you have is due to software or a third party app like Snapchat, we suggest that you first boot the phone in safe mode. Booting your Note 5 in safe mode will prevent third party apps and services from running. If the issue won’t occur in this mode, start uninstalling apps until the issue is eliminated. Make sure to observe your phone while in safe mode for at least 48 hours to know the difference. Here’s how it’s done:

  • Turn off the phone completely.
  • Press and hold the Power key.
  • Once ‘Samsung Galaxy Note5’ shows, release the Power key and immediately press and hold the Volume Down button.
  • The phone will restart but keep the Volume Down button pressed.
  • Once the phone has finished restarting, ‘Safe mode’ will be display in the lower-left corner of the screen.
  • You may now release the Volume Down button.

Alternatively, you can do another round of factory reset and observe the phone for another 48 hours. Make sure that you don’t install anything during the observation.

If the issues continue during the observation period after doing any of these procedures, call Samsung for repair or replacement.

Problem #5: Sprint Galaxy Note 5 voicemail app not working

My phone is a brand new Galaxy Note 5 and I have transferred old info onto it. Problem: Voicemail. I receive it and retrieve it, but not notification on the voicemail icon. When I am on the inbox of voicemail…it will not verify my account information. If I go to preferences on voicemail the manage subscription does not work. It stays a soft grey. I have cleared cache and data. Nothing.

I have had Sprint reset so I can begin my voicemail again and still nothing. My husband has the same brand and provider and his version for voice mail is T.7.0.0.18 and works perfect mine is T.6.1.1.7. I cannot get my phone to do any manual updates under the voicemail app. Can you help? Thanks!

Hope I was clear in explaining my problem. SPRINT cannot help…hope you can.  Thanks again! My number is area code 340 which is the United States Virgin Islands and so is my husband’s.  His phone has worked perfect the day he got it 2 years ago. Thanks again. — Marta

Solution: Hi Marta. The only party that can help fix the issue is Sprint itself, especially if you’re using their own voicemail app. The only suggestions that we can provide are general software solutions like wiping the concerned app’s cache and data, wiping the phone system cache, or factory reset.

Specific app issues like what you’re experiencing can be caused by poor coding, which means that the app itself is poorly built and may be having some compatibility issues with the current phone or operating system.

If wiping the voicemail app’s cache and data did not work, try to wipe the cache partition. Here’s how it’s done:

  • Turn off your Samsung Galaxy Note 5 completely.
  • Press and hold the Volume Up and the Home buttons first, and then press and hold the Power key.
  • Keep the three buttons pressed and when ‘Samsung Galaxy Note5’ shows, release the Power key but continue holding the other two.
  • Once the Android logo shows, release both the Volume Up and Home buttons.
  • The notice ‘Installing system update’ will show on the screen for 30 to 60 seconds before the Android system recovery screen is shown with its options.
  • Use the Volume Down key to highlight the option ‘wipe cache partition’ and press the Power key to select it.
  • When the process is complete, use the Volume Down key to highlight the option ‘Reboot system now’ and hit the Power key to restart the phone.
  • The reboot may take a little longer to complete but don’t worry and wait for the device to become active.

If refreshing the system cache won’t help, the next logical step is to do a factory reset. If that won’t work still, call Sprint again and demand that they fix their service or app.

 


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