Disabling Ads in Samsung Galaxy S4 Notification Bar

This is a very common problem not just for Samsung Galaxy S4 owners but to all Android users. Ads in the notification bar are one of the most common ways used by developers to earn from applications they develop for free. While there are developers who create malicious apps, not all ads that are automatically placed in the notification bar contain malware. In fact, majority of those apps are intended to bring about revenue. Nevertheless, all of them are so annoying.

This post will guide you through disabling or getting rid of ads that are automatically installed in the notification bar of your Samsung Galaxy S4. But before anything else, here are some of the symptoms or signs that your phone has one of these ads.

  • Push ads are visible on the notification bar.
  • You can see a green plus + sign or blue plus + sign in Notification bar.
  • You can see a golden (or any color) star icon in the notification bar.
  • You can find AirPush ads in the notification bar from time to time.

Step 1: Find Apps That Bring Ads

If you got a unit from a service provider and you are experiencing this problem, the odd is you got the ads from third-party applications you downloaded and installed on your device. One way to know if the ad is not from your service provider is when it promotes something other than the company. You should know that telecommunication companies, especially in the U.S., are among the high rollers. So, they wouldn’t promote any products or services other than the ones they offer.

Therefore, take time to recall which apps you installed that could have brought the ads to existence. Or, recall when the ads started to show up then think of apps you installed around that time.

Note: Apps from reputable developers and companies don’t usually bring ads with them, rather, they pay for the service to get exposure. Thus, find apps from developers that you not have heard before.

Step 2: Disable / Uninstall Apps That Bring Ads

If you suspect some third-party apps, the next thing you should do is confirm if your suspicion is correct. To do that safely, you need to disable them first one-by-one. Here’s how:

  1. Go back to the Home screen, then tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, then More tab.
  3. Tap Application Manager.
  4. Swipe to right once to choose All tab. (Other tabs are Downloaded and Running.)
  5. Scroll up or down to look for the app you suspected of bringing ads to your notification bar.
  6. Tap the Disable button.
  7. Reboot your phone because some apps may not be disabled unless your restart the system.
  8. If disabling one app won’t solve the problem, do the same to other suspected apps.

Remember, you are still in the process of confirming your suspicion and you might be wrong that is why we recommend you disable the apps first.

After doing the steps above and ads disappeared, then you can go ahead and uninstall the app(s) you found to be the culprit.

  1. Go back to the Home screen, then tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, then More tab.
  3. Tap Application Manager.
  4. Swipe to right once to choose All tab. (Other tabs are Downloaded and Running.)
  5. Scroll up or down to look for the app you suspected of bringing ads to your notification bar.
  6. Tap the Uninstall button.
  7. Tap the OK button.

Step 3: Prevent Apps That Bring Ads

Almost all free applications from the Google Play Store have ads in them and to be rational, banner ads that can be found at the top or the bottom of the screen are acceptable even those that pop up from time to time. What I mean to say is to prevent apps that automatically install other form of ads in the notification bar or even in the app drawer.

There are a lot of apps from the Play Store claiming to be able to detect apps with addons. But for me, one of the best is the Addons Detector. It is a free app that does exactly what it’s developer said about it.

Note: The Droid Guy is not, in any way, affiliated with the developer of Addons Detector, denper. The only reason why the app’s name appears in this post is because I, personally, am using this app to detect other apps that come with addons. Feel free to install other addon detector apps in the Play Store.

Step 4: Perform A Hard Reset

After doing the steps above and ads still appear in the notification bar, there’s nothing left to do but backup all your important data and do a Master Reset to bring the phone back to its factory settings. This procedure will uninstall all third-party apps including ads that have already been installed subtly in your phone. This is the ultimate fix for this problem but it is also a hassle considering the time you would spend backing up and restoring your data and the possibility of messing up with the system.

Hard Reset from Settings

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Menu key.
  2. Tap Settings, then Accounts tab.
  3. Tap Backup and Reset.
  4. Tap Factory Data Reset.
  5. Tap Reset Device.
  6. Tap Delete All.

Hard Reset via Hardware Keys

  1. Turn the device off completely.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up, Home, and Power keys until the phone vibrates then release the Power button but continue holding the other two.
  3. Release both buttons when Android System Recovery screen appears.
  4. Use Volume Down button to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  5. Press the Power button to select it.
  6. Use Volume Down button to highlight ‘delete all user data’ and press the Power button to select it.
  7. When the reset is complete, choose ‘Reboot system now.’

Tell us your problems

The solutions we provided here are based on reports and testimonies from owners who have encountered these problems. I also ask my XDA developer friends regarding some of the problems. Now if you have other problems or questions with your smartphone that you want answered, don’t hesitate to send us email at [email protected].

We don’t guarantee a reply to all emails because we receive hundreds of them daily, but rest assured your email messages will be read by me. But I urge you to provide as much details as possible so I could easily find references and compare your problems with reports from other owners. If your problem is as common as others, there could already be solutions that exist and I would surely point you to them. Screenshots often help so attach one if you can.

One Comment

  1. I have numerous popup ads on my Samsung Galaxy S4, so many that I am having a problem using the phone because of the popups. Each time I attempt to remove the ads by watching a posted video for S4’s, the screens shown on the web do not match my screens. Thus, when I follow instructions in the video I do not get the same result. For example, when I installed Adblock Plus 1.3, nothing on my phone matched the Adblock Plus 1.3 software in the video. Thus, I could not follow the example in the video. I need a step-by-step solution. Thanks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *