Being one of the most popular Android phones, especially in the “phablet” category, the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 has become one of the most praised and criticized device. It is also one of Samsung devices with longest running series of problems and solutions. But like what I always say in my post, majority of problems sent to us by our readers resulted from sheer lack of knowledge while others from glitches that could be fixed by simple reboot.
Anyhow, we are obliged to respond to our readers especially the ones that spent time writing long email messages just to explain their concerns and provide as much details as possible. Our responses, however, would always come in posts like this to make them public so other owners who may have the same problems could easily access solutions we provided.
We are always open to your emails, problems and suggestions so if you have some, feel free to email us at [email protected] or you may interact with us through our Facebook and Google+ pages. We will do our best to respond to your inquiries. We only have one request, though; provide as much details as possible so we would know how to help you better. It is really difficult to provide solutions to owners whose messages goes like this, “Hey, my phone’s not working. Please help me.” I hope you get the point.
Auto-rotate in Note 3 not working
Q: Hello, I will start off by saying I LOVE MY NOTE 3!!!. Here’s my problem, the screen auto rotate is not working properly. When turned on via display settings, it rotates my screen into landscape mode. When not turned on, my photos that are taken in portrait style rotate to landscape mode when viewed in the gallery. Has this issue ever been brought up at all, and is there a fix? Thank you, Megan.
A: Hi Megan. Did you root or change the ROM in your phone lately? We noticed that this problem only happens after an unsuccessful rooting of a Galaxy device. If you did, please provide more details especially on some other changes that were done on your phone prior to this problem happening.
- If you didn’t root your phone, this probably is a bug that can be fixed. In the meantime, please go through these steps to try to resolve the issue:
- Turn off Auto-Rotation under your phone settings by going to Settings – Display – Auto Rotation (unchecked).
- Turn off the device and remove the SIM card and battery. Wait for few seconds before you reinsert them.
- Switch the phone back on and check Auto-Rotation again.
You can opt for a complete wipe by doing Factory Reset only if all else fails. Be sure to backup your data before doing so. Check out the steps below:
- Go to app drawer
- Select Settings
- Go to General tab and tap it
- Select Backup and reset
- You can read the warnings then click on Reset Device
- Tap on Delete All. This step should reset and restart your device.
Emoji problem in Note 3
Q: I love everything Japanese being born and raised in Japan. I recently noticed that one of my friends sent some emojis using Galaxy Note 3 and she told that it can accessed on the keyboard. Well, I have no clue how to do that. Hahaha. What do I need to do? I also have a Note 3 and I badly want to have some emojis too! Please help. — Leah
A: Hi Leah. We’re pleased to announce that Google has updated its keyboard app by adding tons of Japanese symbols and Emojis as well as other cute new emoticons. Please follow the steps below so can enable emojis on your keyboard:
- Go to Settings
- Select Language and Input
- Go to Keyboard & Input Settings and enable iWnn IME
- Tap Settings symbol near iWnn IME keyboard
- Enable Emoji and Japanese under Language
- Go back to messaging
- Long press on the space bar so you can open the Input Method menu
- Select emoji or Japanese or any of your favorites
Is my Galaxy Note 3 overheating?
Q: I got my Samsung Note 3 from my son who is shipping out abroad. I have no problems with the phone until recently that I noticed it’s getting uncomfortable warm to touch. I’ve had it for 3 months and this is the first that I observe such issue. I downloaded some apps recently but I seem can’t remember what they are. Downloading them are the only changes I’ve made on the phone. I play some games on it and after an hour the phone gets warm. This has never happened before. I also noticed that the phone seems to lost power quickly now compared to my first use 3 months ago. The nearest shop in my area is about 15 miles and I can barely drive right now due to an illness. Is there something that I can do to fix this problem? I need help please. My name is James.
A: Hi James. It’s a good thing that you mentioned that the only change you’ve made on your phone was to download some apps. Assuming that your hardware is okay, any of those apps you downloaded may be the culprit. I would recommend that you narrow down your options which app to remove from your device by making a list of apps that were present when you got the Note 3. That should tell you that the remaining apps may need to be uninstalled altogether.
To remove them, please follow these steps:
- Go to Menu and select Settings
- Tap on General and select Application manager
- Swipe across to All
- Select the app you wish to remove
- Tap on Uninstall
- Select Ok
However, if after you uninstall them and the problem continues, I suggest that you delete cache partition. This step is used if a user does not want to completely wipe out everything on the device by doing a Factory Reset. Wiping the Cache Partition will only remove the temporary applications and application files without affecting other user data files.
- Turn off the phone
- Go to Recovery Mode by pressing buttons Volume Up, Home, and Power. Once the phone vibrates, let go of the Power key but continue holding both Volume Up and the Home keys.
- The Android System Recovery screen will appear and that’s your hint to release Volume Up and Home buttons.
- Press the Volume Down button to select “wipe” cache partition.
- Tap the Power key to select and process “wiping” of cache partition
- The phone will then highlight reboot system now so press the Power button to restart the device
- After the phone reboots, check again under Settings – General – Battery – Apps to see what apps are using more power
- You may also want to check what apps are probably causing the problem when the Wi-Fi or data are on by going to Settings – Connections – Data usage
These steps are meant for a firmware issue. If they will not fix the problem, then it means that your hardware is defective and you may want a technician to check it.
Can’t use Note 3 in the U.S. because of regional lock
Q: My son working for the Air Force and is based in Germany recently gave me his Samsung Galaxy Note 3. I love the look of the phone especially it’s amazing big screen size. However, I can’t seem to get it to work in Texas even after I tried different SIM cards from at least 3 carriers. My son said that the phone works when he sent it to me. Is there something I’m missing here? I can’t wait to use this phone! Please send me an email how to fix this. Thank You. Stephanie
A: Hi Stephanie. Your phone may be region locked to Europe or Germany, which means that its settings are not yet configured to work in the U.S. This problem has become a bane for many tourists around the world.
Supposedly, if this phone has been used by your son to call while stationed in Germany for at least 5 minutes, it would unlock the regional restriction there. Apparently this never happened.
Another option to unlock it is to go to a Samsung service center so their technicians can remove the restriction. If this is not possible in your case, the steps below is your last resort.
- Insert a SIM card to your phone. Any SIM card will do. It’s good that you said you have tried at least three of them.
- Once a “window” appears with “Unlock” option, hit the “Dismiss” to skip it.
- Download the RegionLock Away app from Google Play. Developed by XDA, RegionLock Away is meant to clear network blacklist or region lock.
- Install RegionLock Away. If your phone prompts you to uncheck Unknown Sources in Settings, please do so.
- After the installation, select “Region Unlock” in the App window.
- Reboot the phone.
That should allow your Note 3 to be used around the world.
Note 3 keeps on restarting
Q: I only recently noticed that my Note 3 keeps on turning itself off and on while being charged, or while waiting for it to download games from Google Play. I bought it last March and I didn’t have a single problem with it until now. My son once interrupted its processes while it was charging and I think that was when I started to notice the problem. Also, the phone seems to have slowed a bit because it takes a while for it to download anything. Even when playing games, the phone also lags a little and I can’t seem to find out what’s going on. I have reinserted the battery and the micro SD card several times. — John
A: Hello John. There have been many reports from Note 3 users about their phones doing a boot loop (constant reboot). Samsung and carriers have been unable to determine the cause of the problem and it appears that there have been no updates to fix this. There can be a range of factors that might affect a phone and cause a boot loop including rogue apps installed on the device, faulty micro SD cards, or even defective device antenna. A good set of resolution steps is outlined below to try to fix this issue:
- Turn off the phone
- Remove the battery
- Unplug the SD card
- Insert the battery
- Reboot the phone
- Go to Menu
- Select System Settings
- Tap Wi-Fi
- Select Menu
- Go to Advanced
- Uncheck “Always allow scanning
- Go back to the Home Page
- Turn off the phone
- Reinsert the SD card and battery
- Turn back on the device
Group email in Note 3
Q: Hi. I work for a charity and my job involves sending emails to a lot of people. This is easily done on a computer but sometimes it’s difficult to do all my job at the office. I recently boiught a Note 3 because I was told that it can handle emails without problems. My main concern is how to send bulk emails. I am new to the phone and I really don’t have much time to play around with it. Can you help? — Jeanne
A: Hi Jeanne. You’re right. Your Samsung Galaxy Note 3 can handle emails just fine. Here are the steps on how to send emails for a group of people:
- Go your Home Screen and tap your Email app
- Select the Compose symbol
- Tap the Contacts icon
- Go to Groups
- Select the group you wish to send the email to
- Tap Select all
- Tap Done
- Highlight the Subject field
- Enter a subject
- Tap Next
- Compose your message
- Then tap Send icon when done.
Hope this helps.
Air View How-Tos
Q: Let me start by saying I’m not good at technology. My Samsung Note 3 was given to me as a present for my birthday so I have no choice on the matter. I would have preferred to use a more simple and easy to use phone but I am, at the same time, enjoying this amazing device I got. I just noticed one day while I was at a café that a lady was using her Note 3 looking at something but she was actually not touching the screen when scrolling down. Is that something I have to enable or pay for on my Note 3? I tried to look for it in the manual but I can’t seem to find anything that hints on scrolling without touching the screen. Maybe I simply missed the topic but can you help? I don’t know what I’m saying but all I want to do is to scroll down a page of say, a book I’m reading without touching the screen. — Lester
A: Hi Lester. You must be looking for a Note 3 feature called Air View. This feature will allow you to interact with your phone’s screen without touching it. As long as it detects that your S Pen or finger is hovering over the screen, it will give you a set of options like view a movie, magnify webpages, or scroll down to the next page on the ebook you’re reading. To activate this feature, I’ve prepared a set of steps below for you.
- On the Home screen, tap the Menu icon
- Go to Settings
- Select Motions and gestures
- Toggle Air View from off to on
- Tap the Home button to return to the Home screen
- Test it by say, opening an email
- Take out your S Pen from its slot
- Hover the S Pen over an email in your inbox to preview its contents
That’s it! Your Air View is now ready.
Home Wi-Fi is unstable when using Note 3
Q: Droid Guy, I’m not sure if this problem is on my phone but I’m now getting “Your Internet connection is unstable” error when it is connected to my home router. I’d say I have no such issue when on the road with my data plan. I have no other phone to test my Wi-Fi connectivity but a call from my Internet provider said that my service with them is working. I need to connect my phone to my home Wi-Fi because I sometimes download big email files and I don’t want my data plan reached its limit. How can I make my phone connected? — Michelle
A: Hi Michelle. At this point, we can’t point our finger yet whether the problem is with your phone or with your home network. Normally, if the Wi-Fi connection is not stable, a device will display a message that the connection is such. So let’s do the resolution steps below to try to fix your problem:
- Go to Settings
- Select Wi-Fi
- Long press on the existing connection
- Tap Forget network
- Press the Menu key
- Select Advanced and ensure that Passpoint is set to Off. This is to make sure that your phone does not automatically connect to any available network that may ask for more authentication.
- Turn off Auto network by unchecking it.
These steps should make your connection stable provided that your router and internet connection are working fine.
It would also help you narrow down the problem if you contact your router manufacturer for assistance, especially in checking if it is broadcasting in a clear spectrum. Wi-Fi signals are susceptible to interference like microwaves or wireless home phones. If you think your area is affected by interference, try using the 5 Ghz frequency instead of the 2.5 Ghz.
Also, keep your device and router in a clear line of sight as walls and other electronics can greatly diminish the radio power from the router.
Photos are damaged by Note 3
Q: Hi Droid guy, I just came from a 3-day vacation and I noticed that the photos on my Note 3 are not how they’re supposed to be. I don’t know anything about computers or phones so this really came as a shock and a big disappointment. I want to print some of my photos but right now, when I open my Gallery, all I can see are names of photos and there’s a crack-like thing on each of them. I was told that my SD card may have been damaged but I can recount checking my photos on the way back home and they were fine.
I really want to bring those photos back, you know. They’re happy memories and I meant to preserve them. Is there a way for me to move the current photos I have to my computer so I can save them? I am yet to have someone check my phone for defects but I’m really dying every time I remember that those will be gone. — Jessica
A: Hi Jessica. You may be right. The micro SD card on your phone is probably defective or the photos may be corrupt. I don’t want to set improper expectations here. There is a big chance that you may have already lost those photos. Sadly, there’s nothing more that we can do if that happens but you can move forward to prevent this from happening again.
There can be a few reasons why an SD card can get corrupt. Sometimes it’s an inherent defect on the card itself, while at times its a bad partition on the card. At some rare cases, it’s a corrupt phone operating system that’s the culprit. For now, let’s assume that your data are lost. If you can accept that, you can go ahead and do the steps I’m going to give to you.
The first thing to do is to format your SD card in FAT32 file system using your computer. This should wipe out everything but also refreshes the card itself. It’s also a good idea to clear the cache and data of your Gallery app by going to Settings > Applications Manager > Go to desired app by selecting the right tab on top – choose both Clear Cache and Clear Data.
These steps together with formatting the SD card should fix the issue, but should the issue continue, you can try using another SD card, preferably of different brand. If the problem happens again, it must be your Note 3 that’s causing it so get a replacement from your carrier or retailer.
Bluetooth on Note 3 not working
Q:I have a bluetooth headset that I want to connect to my Note 3 but it seems to be unable to detect it. I’ve checked all bluetooth settings to no avail. Is there anything else to do, or does this suggest the headset is defective? I still have a warranty on it so I can get it replaced if needed. — Lucille
A: Hi Lucille. Did you check the manual of your headset to see if it is compatible with your Note 3? The Bluetooth protocol being used by Samsung devices including your Note 3 is Bluetooth 4.0 and it should be compatible with A2DP, AVRCP, GOEP, HFP, HID, HSP, MAP, OPP, and PBAP. If your headset doesn’t support any of these, then get a different one.
Since you said that you’ve checked all the settings, I’m assuming that you also ensured that both devices were on when you tried to connect them. Sometimes, this simple step is often forgotten in the haste to resolve the trouble.
Now, if both headset and Note 3 are compatible and the issue continues, you may want to do a soft reset on your device. Remember, a soft reset will delete temporary files only, so you don’t have to worry losing your files and data. To do this, please follow these:
- Press and hold the Power key, tap Power off, and then tap OK to turn your phone off.
- Remove the battery. After 30 seconds, reinsert the battery.
- Press and hold the Power key to turn your Samsung Galaxy Note 3 back on.
- Test your device to see if the issue is resolved.
- Remove the pairing and re-pair both devices to update the connection
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