Galaxy Note 4 Recent Apps button stop working after updating Android, other issues

Note 4

While installing an update in most smartphones is generally successful, some #GalaxyNote4 users may experience headaches. Our post today shows two problems some of our Note 4 users have experienced after updating Android OS.

  1. Galaxy Note 4 Recent Apps button stop working after updating Android
  2. Galaxy Note 4 battery drain issue | Galaxy Note 4 keeps freezing
  3. Galaxy Note 4 camera focus not working after replacing the camera
  4. Galaxy Note 4 screen becomes unresponsive after locking
  5. Galaxy Note 4 Menu and Back buttons stop working after updating to Marshmallow

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 4 Recent Apps button stop working after updating Android

Hello. In Short: Recent Apps button not working on Note 4 5.1.1 after upgrading from 4.4.4.

Long Version: I had the note 4 from January 2015 and until 3 weeks ago it was ok.

Then the battery seems to be playing up, battery percentage does not reflect true capacity. Bought a battery off ebay then trying to survive with battery pulls every hour or so.

after the new battery arrives phones load up but on startup touchwiz home would crash and phone get frozen after a while. tried deleting apps cache and even cache data partition.

went to a hardware repair shop that I personally know, he said hardware is ok.

Went to Samsung Experience Store, original battery was tested to be faulty. we agreed there are many possibilities to what happened but one of them might be that the frequent battery pull makes the firmware corrupted.

upgraded to 5.1.1 from 4.4.4. Phone seems to be running well except some hiccups on Whatsapp and Facebook (probably because of the optimization. But the biggest problem, the recent apps button does not work!

tried installing “All in one gestures” apps to reprogram the buttons. Home and back buttons are reprogrammable but recent apps still nothing. tried delete cache data partition and restarted still no effect. disabling Talkback on apps manager also did not change anything.

Any advice? or is it just one of those Lollipop bugs? Feels like they revived my phone from a cardiac arrest in exchange for recent apps functionality!

Please be so kind to offer me a solution, Mr. droid guy.! — Bern

Solution: Hi Bern. The problem with Recent Apps button losing functionality after a major OS update is a phenomenon that Android community has observed way back. Some users of new Galaxy S and Note series have reported a similar problem so yours is definitely not an isolated case. Some of the known solutions for the problem though do not deviate much from the usual stuff. They include wiping the cache partition and doing a factory reset. You did not mention doing the second solution so, for reference, we include the steps on how to do it here:

  • Turn off the Galaxy Note 4 completely.
  • Press and hold the Volume Up and the Home keys together, then press and hold the Power key.
  • When the Note 4 vibrates, release both the Home and Power keys but continue holding the Volume Up key.
  • When the Android System Recovery shows on the screen, release the Volume Up key.
  • Using the Volume Down key, highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’ and press the Power key to select it.
  • Now highlight ‘Yes — delete all user data’ using the Volume Down key and press the Power key to begin the reset.
  • When the master reset is complete, highlight ‘Reboot system now’ and hit the Power key.
  • The Note 4 will restart but it will be longer than usual. When it reaches the Home screen, then begin your setup.

Doing a factory reset or master reset will erase everything off your phone storage. Make sure that you create a backup of your important stuff before you proceed.

Problem #2: Galaxy Note 4 battery drain issue | Galaxy Note 4 keeps freezing

My phone has been driving me nuts! I’ve had it for a little over a year now with no problems until recently. I need to determine if I need to purchase a new battery or get a refurbished phone.

So, my battery life is awful. When I’m using my phone, anything under about 60% it has the risk of dying to 0% and shutting off. It’s very frustrating to know even though my phone is fairly charged, I can’t  rely on it to last me when I go out.

Also, a huge problem I’ve been having is my phone has been freezing a lot. Mostly when I am texting. I will have to give the back of my phone a little hit to unfreeze it. I’ll text a few words and it freezes so the words don’t appear until a few seconds later and or after I hit the back  of my phone. Now I know I shouldn’t do that, but I’ve found it’s the only way it unfreezes. It is very frustrating and I need to know if I should buy a battery or a whole new phone. Please help. Thank you!! — Mia

Solution: Hi Mia. We have no idea what’s the current state of the hardware, or its full history, so we can also speculate.

The first concern about it dying when the charge is low may have something to do with the battery. Depending on how often you charge and discharge the battery, it may now have lost significant capacity that using the device normally causes it to fail. This means that the battery can no longer hold a charge for long. There’s a chance though that it may simply need to be re-calibrated. So that’s the first thing that we recommend you do. It’s simple. Just charge the phone to 100%, then drain the power back to 0% by playing some games or doing activities that can hasten the power drain. Do this cycle at least twice. After this activity, observe the phone for a couple of days to see if battery behavior will change. If the issue returns, buy an official Samsung battery.

Again once, you have a new battery, observe the phone again for a couple of days to see if the issue is still there. Keep in mind that Lithium-based batteries like the one on your Note 4 loses capacity over time. An average battery will usually show signs of deterioration after a year of usage so the most likely reason for your troubles, including the freezing issue, now may be isolated to the battery only. However, if nothing will change even with a brand new Samsung battery, that’s an indicator that the problem is on the phone. It may be due to a bad software or a malfunctioning hardware.

The next best thing to do is to boot your phone in safe mode so you’ll know if a third party app is to blame. In this mode, you’ll still be able to use pre-installed apps as well as send and receive text messages. We suggest that you observe how the phone behaves while in safe mode for at least 24 hours. Here’s how to do it:

  • Turn off the phone completely.
  • Press and hold the Power key and the Volume Down key.
  • When the phone starts to boot, release the Power key but continue holding the Volume Down key until the phone finished restarting.
  • Safe mode will be display at the lower left corner; you may release the Volume Down key now.

You can also perform a factory reset right away if you want to see if firmware glitch is to blame. Be sure that you don’t re-install your apps right after a factory reset. Give the phone at least 24 hours before you install them so you’ll see a difference.

Now, if the phone continues to show the same problems after doing all these procedures, you can assume that hardware is to blame. If the option of getting a new unit is available, don’t hesitate to use it.

Problem #3: Galaxy Note 4 camera focus not working after replacing the camera

I have recently replaced my screen as it was cracked. At the same time I went to replace the main camera and protective lens as the latter had been broken and the original camera was producing very dirty images…but worked.

When I completed the repair I got “Not for image quality testing, Ok for functionality,” error. In the first two occasions there was no image from the camera. I reinserted the original camera and while I got an image it could not focus. However it seemed to suggest a hardware issue.

I also noted the first two cameras had some contacts exposed whereas my original did not. This is how I came by the third camera.

Third camera install did not work and reported the same error but this time vision was possible through the camera. However the focus was not working and was set to within an inch of the lens.

  • I have installed new software to 6.0.1
  • I have cleared the cache
  • I have tried opening in safe mode

This problem has been ongoing I have had three cameras sent to me by my supplier.

Thoughts and suggestions much appreciated. — Bob

Solution: Hi Bob. Doing all the three procedures above does not work simply because the issue is hardware in nature. There’s no amount of software tweaks that can fix a hardware malfunction.

And speaking of hardware malfunction, we think that the replacement parts you’ve used may either have different specifications or simply incompatible. Whatever the case, it’s clear that your Note 4 won’t work normally with them installed. Be sure to get the exact components before attempting another replacement.

Problem #4: Galaxy Note 4 screen becomes unresponsive after locking

So for about 4 weeks now, my phone will lock its screen, then when I press the power button to show the unlock screen, nothing happens. The screen stays black. The notification LED will still flash for notifications or charging, but the phone will not show an unlock screen. This then forces me to remove the battery, wait, then reinstall to see if that works. This has about a 50% success rate, sometimes I will load a screen that has booting info on the top left, and then the android character with text underneath that reads “Do Not Turn Off! Downloading…”; however, nothing comes from this either. At this point, I’ll remove the battery once again, it will end up starting and doing fine.

This issue seemed to have happened last night (5/31/16) when running a software update because now when I went to turn my phone on, in the top left corner of the startup screen it read “recovery booting..”” and then would take me to a screen that read “Installing” with the AT&T logo. It would then after about 2-3 minutes run what looked like an update to 100%, read “Update Complete” and the screen goes black. The device does not reboot and run, it’s stuck in a “recovery booting…” loop, and I don’t know how to fix that whether it be the battery not delivering enough to the device, or a hardware or software issue. — Brayton

Solution: Hi Brayton. An issue like this can be caused either by a software glitch or a bad hardware.  The general rule of thumb when troubleshooting this problem involves checking the software first. To do that, you have to do things like wiping the cache partition, booting in safe mode, or resetting all software settings to factory default. The steps on how to do the last two procedures are provided above. For instructions on how to wipe the cache partition, kindly refer to the steps below:

  • Turn off the Galaxy Note 4 completely.
  • Press and hold the Volume Up and the Home keys together, then press and hold the Power key.
  • When the Note 4 vibrates, release both the Home and Power keys but continue holding the Volume Up key.
  • When the Android System Recovery shows on the screen, release the Vol 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.

Problem #5: Galaxy Note 4 Menu and Back buttons stop working after updating to Marshmallow

Officially updated my Note 4 N910G bought from India from Android 5.0.1 to Android v6.0.1. Everything works fine. But when the Power Saving mode is enabled, the Menu Key and Back key are going permanently off.  Earlier, in v5.0.1, there was an option titled RESTRICTED MODE under the Battery, Power Saving, for the user to Turn On/Off the Back Key & Menu Key. But this option of Restricted Mode is not anywhere in the Phone after updating to v6.0.1.

Also, when the Power Saving Mode is enabled, it is displayed on the Notification Bar with the Grey background. It is intriguing and looks odd and disturbing. Earlier in v5.0.1, there existed no such issues.

Now, yesterday too, I got an update sized 604 MB after my first update to v6.0.1. Updated with this latest update post v6.0.1 too. But the issues still persist. Contacted Samsung and given the detailed feedback. They are simply asking me to take the phone to their service center, blah, blah, blah. Taking the phone to the service center yields no result as the phone has no hardware issues.  The software bug cannot be addressed by the Service Centre as they can simply get the phone updated again with the same bug.  Samsung team is simply befooling the phone user by using such stock replying tactics as if they did not understand the problem even after everything is clearly communicated in the feedback.  — Sivakumar

Solution: Hi Sivakumar. This may be an isolated case as we are yet to hear a similar problem from other users of Marshmallow-upgraded Note 4s. We recommend that you do the basic software troubleshooting like the ones mentioned above to fix the issue.

An issue like this may also be introduced by installing a buggy carrier-provided firmware, or a glitchy third party firmware version. Keep in mind that there are hundreds of firmware versions for the Note 4 right now. If the symptoms started happening right after a software update, consider wiping the cache partition and doing a factory reset. You also want to let the developer of the firmware know that the current version is buggy.

We are confused what your point is in mentioning how Power saving mode is displayed in the notification bar. If you don’t want it, then don’t use it. That’s how simple it is. That’s a user interface concern and there’s nothing that we can do about that.

Now, if you think bringing your phone to a Samsung shop won’t yield any positive result, you can either manually revert the phone’s firmware back to Lollipop, or do the software troubleshooting mentioned above.


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