Galaxy S6 stuck and won’t install OTA update, keeps saying “calls emergency only”, other boot issues

Hello everyone! Out #GalaxyS6 article today answers some boot-related issues. As usual, these questions are sent by some members of our community. We hope that it will help not just the ones mentioned here but other users who may be experiencing similar troubles.

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.

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.

Below are specific topics we’re bringing for you today:

Problem 1: Galaxy S6 won’t boot up

Samsung S6 will not turn on or boot. I left the phone plugged in to a Samsung brand charger for a couple of days. The phone worked perfectly before this incident, but after removing from the charger the phone would not turn on. I can feel the haptic single vibration when I press the power button, but only one, single vibration. It will charge. I have charged several different batteries with the phone, but it will not turn on. I have tried recovery mode (power, home, audio up). The phone will not turn on. Thanks for any help that you can provide. — Curtissriedel

Solution: Hi Curtissriedel. You can try to power on the phone to two other alternate modes — Odin mode and safe mode. If you still can’t turn it on, you must let a professional check the hardware. Below are the steps on how to boot to Download mode and Safe Mode:

Boot in Download Mode:

  1. Charge the phone for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Press and then hold the Home and Volume DOWN keys, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Samsung Galaxy logo shows on the screen, release the Power key but continue holding the Home and Volume DOWN keys.
  4. Wait until the Download screen appears.
  5. If you can boot the phone in download mode but not in other modes, that means that your only way out may be to flash a stock or custom firmware.
  6. Use Google to look for a guide on how to do it.

Boot in safe mode:

  1. Charge the phone for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Press and hold the Power button.
  3. Once the Samsung Galaxy logo appears, release the Power key and immediately press and hold the Volume Down button.
  4. Continue holding the button until the phone finishes rebooting.
  5. Once you see the text “Safe mode” at the bottom left corner of the screen, release the Volume Down button.
  6. The only difference of safe mode from normal mode is that the former prevents third party apps from running. If you can boot the phone in safe mode but not in normal mode, uninstall all apps until the issue (that prevents you from booting normally) is eliminated.

Problem 2: Galaxy S6 Recovery Mode procedure

I ended up bricking my phone, or so I think I did. About a year a go, I installed a custom ROM to my phone but after many issues finally arising over time, I decided I wanted to reset my phone back to normal. Using TWRP recovery I found a backup I had made before I installed the custom ROM and brought the phone back to that state. I then factory reset the phone doing an advanced wipe of everything but the USB storage as it wouldn’t allow me to otherwise. Once I rebooted my phone, it loaded up to the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge front screen and hasn’t left since. I understand now that I was supposed to flash the original stock ROM back onto my phone before proceeding the way I did. However, is there anyway I can fix my phone from the position i’m in or is there no hope of recovering it? I cannot turn my phone off, let alone try to get it into any sort of recovery mode. – Logan Wozniak

Solution: Hi Logan. If a Samsung device encounters trouble booting up normally, there are only three available independent boot modes that a user must try to access to hopefully do something about the issue — Recovery Mode, Download Mode, and Safe Mode. In your current situation, the best course of action is to boot to Odin mode and proceed with reflashing the bootloader. If that won’t work, that’s the time that you try to flash a stock ROM.

If you want to boot to recovery mode so you can either wipe the cache partition or perform a hard reset, these are the steps:

  1. Charge the phone for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Press and then hold the Home and Volume UP keys, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Samsung Galaxy logo shows on the screen, release the Power key but continue holding the Home and Volume Up keys.
  4. When the Android logo shows, you may release both keys and leave the phone be for about 30 to 60 seconds.
  5. You can either wipe the cache partition or do a factory reset when in this mode.

Problem 3: Galaxy S6 stuck and won’t install OTA update

Hello. A very good day.. I waited for OTA to reach my S6 but it wasn’t coming for so long so i decided to do a manual update using Odin, which was successful. After that, i enjoyed it for a while and then i got another update. only this time it was OTA which if i remember correctly i think was a security patch or so of about 468MB and i downloaded successful and tried installing. this is where i got the problem. It keeps saying installing and when it gets to 32% it starts again and on and on like that so i even tried keeping overnight till the next morning trying to see if with time it will install. only to wake up the next morning to realize that it’s still doing the same thing. So i forcefully powered off and booted into download mode again and using Odin reinstalled the older version i earlier did. So please is there any solution to this problem because i could really use your help. Thanks. — DAVID TETTEH

Solution: Hi David. So what’s the problem? Are you now having an issue doing the flashing procedure, or is it still the original one which was caused by an OTA update? If you’re still having the main problem at this time, consider flashing the bootloader to revert it back to its stock state. This procedure often works when a device encounters trouble booting up. Flashing the bootloader is very similar to flashing the firmware. Below are the sample steps. Exact steps may vary slightly on your phone.

  1. Look for the correct firmware for your phone model and download it. Make sure that you select the right one. It should be the same exact firmware that ran previously on your device. We assume that you list down the firmware version somewhere. If you did not take note of it before, there’s a chance that you may pick the wrong one. As you may know now, using an incorrect firmware can cause complications so good luck with that.
  2. Let’s now say that you have identified the correct firmware. You then want to download it to your computer. The firmware file should have a bunch of files in it like AP_, BL_, CSC_, etc.
  3. Look for the file that starts with a label BL; this should be the corresponding bootloader file for this firmware. Once you’ve identified the bootloader file, copy it to your computer’s desktop or to any other folder that you can easily access.
  4. Proceed with the rest of the flashing procedure using the Odin program.
  5. In Odin, click on the BL tab and make sure to use the bootloader file you’ve identified earlier.
  6. Now, make sure that the “Device Added” status and its “ID:COM box” has turned blue before hitting the START button. This will initiate the flashing of your phone’s bootloader.

Problem 4: Galaxy S6 from China won’t connect to network, keeps saying “calls emergency only”

Hello! I bought a Galaxy S6 from China. It worked for a week and then powered off. When i tried to power it on it said “custom binary blocked by FRP lock.” I saw on Youtube many tutorial for solving this problem and found one that used Odin and i did what it said and fortunately the phone powered on but there seems to be another problem. it says “calls emergency only” and i have no mobile connection. Can you please tell what me to do? Thank you in advance. — Ehodaj88

Solution: Hi Ehodaj88. The “calls emergency only” message that’s showing in your screen may mean that your device is not compatible with the network you’re trying to connect it to. Keep in mind that not all phones can work with all networks. Hardware specifications of some Galaxy devices can differ and when used outside the original country it’s designed to work, incompatibility issues can occur. Do some research about your device by knowing its specifications such as frequencies, and other network-related information. Once you have them, contact your carrier and ask them if your device can work in their network.


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