How to fix Galaxy S8 screen unresponsive issue: screen is very slow

Hello Android fans! Today’s troubleshooting episode will answer two issues for the #GalaxyS8 — slow screen response issue and physically damaged S8 that won’t turn on. If you’re wondering what to do with your own S8 or any Samsung Galaxy S8 that has any of these problems, this post may help give you some ideas.

Problem #1: How to fix Galaxy S8 screen unresponsive issue: screen is very slow

A little over a week ago I picked up my phone in the car to find it really hot. It was’t so hot that I could touch it, but it was hot enough to swing me into direct action. Having experienced similar problems with my Samsung Galaxy Note 3, I thought I knew everything I had to do. Immediately kill all apps, clear cache, and reset or turn off. The problem with my usual solution? The fast screen responsiveness that I’d grown use to since buying the phone in May was completely gone. Keys were seemingly being pressed with no direction on my part and it took several tries to get the ones I was trying to press to complete the intended function. While worrying, I assumed that once my phone cooled down my future in the galaxy would be clear. Oh, how wrong I was.  

My phone cooled down, but the screen still wouldn’t respond. My next plan? Google. Google, Google, Google. What else was I to do? What else would anyone do in my position? I love my phone. It is literally my life. That’s not the millennial in me speaking either! All of my business, both banking and academic, depends on that phone. (I’d say social too, but I’m a proud introvert.)

A very difficult, awkward, and lengthy search later, I had a few solutions. Did any of the solutions work? Hell no. I wouldn’t be here talking to you if they were. Shall I list them for you?

Uninstall last downloaded app: Easy. After the agonizing speed my Note 3 ended up at after 5 years of use, I’d learned my lesson about keeping 500 hundreds apps on my phone. Especially considering that I usually didn’t use these apps more than a week after I allowed them on my device. Didn’t work.

Reboot in Safe Mode: Did I mention how damn hard how it was to get my password in after restarting the first few times? Let me tell you about my pain.

I have a pattern password on my phone. A decision I’ve never regretted until August 21st, 2018. Do you know what 60 seconds multiplied by 5 is? I do. Because it literally took that long to unlock my phone. I’m not exaggerating or whining. It shouldn’t take more than a few seconds to unlock a phone. I was pretty much seething at this point. The best part? Safe reboot didn’t do shit.

Change screen resolution: No, seriously. This answer was found on several forums. Whether it actually worked or the placebo effect was at work, I can’t say. I simply put my phone down and went outside for my own sanity.  

There were a few more things, but these were the only ones that I count as valid or doable. I wasn’t about to open my phone because some dude in his basement on Youtube that keeps going on about how simple it is of a fix. Listening to Youtubers has never done me any good in life, aside from what not to do to my hair.  The problems don’t seem as bad as they did last week, but that may be due to the lack of frustration I felt initially and the fact that I’ve gotten kind of used to them. (I adjust really well in dysfuntion.)

At first I was worried that my phone would never recover, until I chatted with a Geek Squad Remote Support agent. Agent Vincent didn’t know a damn thing. He was very obviously googling basic answers to overheating and ghost touches, he didn’t even ask what kind of phone I had. It was frustrating to say the least. That’s why I’m here. Over a week later.  

So, in conclusion: ghost and phantom touches along with general unresponsiveness. No overheating since the 21st and I’d never had any heating problems before. And no, I didn’t drop the phone. I take very good care of my devices. (Another irritating part of this process.)

I’m hesitant to bring my phone into the Verizon store because I’m not sure if my wireless protection plan covers this or how many repairs I get for the phone. I planned on keeping this phone for a few years, so if this is something I could fix on my own I would be very happy. The Geek Squad guy seemed to think that because the ghost touches didn’t start until after the random overheating that it was a hardware problem and possible defect. It wasn’t even charging at the time, nor were there any apps open. I usually restart my phone at least every other day, and ‘optimize’ my device several times a day.  Is there any solution?? (Sorry if this got a little long winded. I’m sleep deprived.)

Solution: Like in many other Android issues, yours can either be due to a bad third party app, software glitch or hardware malfunction. Screen unresponsiveness or general slow performance of an Android device is a complicated issue, with many possible factors to consider. We understand how frustrating a situation like yours, especially when you’ve seem to have done a lot of troubleshooting steps already. We noticed though that you may not have done some of the troubleshooting steps correctly.

For instance, you did not indicate if your phone was able to boot to safe mode successfully. Safe mode requires turning off your device first. You can’t reach safe mode when it’s not powered down. Because safe mode is an important troubleshooting step, we would like you to do it again. For reference, these are the steps that you need to do:

  1. Turn the device off. If you can’t turn it off for whatever reason, wait until the battery is empty. Then, charge the phone for at least 30 minutes before you continue with the rest of the steps.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the model name screen.
  3. When “SAMSUNG” appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see Safe Mode.

If the screen remains laggy or slow at this point, then you know the problem is not a third part app at all.

Factory reset

Another good troubleshooting step that you can do at this point is to return all software settings back to their defaults. You can do that by doing a master reset. If the problem is being caused by a software bug, factory or master reset will most likely help. Here are the steps to do that:

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  4. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’.
  5. Press Power button to select.
  6. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  7. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  8. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  9. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Factory reset will erase all your personal data (photos, videos, documents, etc). Try to back them up before wiping the phone. If it takes too long to even unlock the device, creating a backup can surely be a pain so you will most probably just skip it.

Hardware malfunction

We did not notice you mentioning factory reset  in your problem description so we assume you haven’t tried it yet. If you did, then that means that the problem is not fixable at your level. Your Galaxy S8 is composed of software and hardware. If the problem is not software in nature, there’s no amount of factory resets or software tweaks that you can do to fix it. There may be an issue with the screen assembly, particularly with the device’s digitizer. The next logical step to do if factory reset fails to resolve the issue is repair or replacement. Work with your carrier or Samsung on how to proceed with either of them.

Problem #2: What to do if Galaxy S8 is accidentally dropped and won’t turn on

I dropped my samsung S8 (in its case, like i have 50 times) from waist height. When I picked it up, it was off and would not turn on (it was fully charged when I dropped it). When I plugged it in, an empty battery symbol would appear on the screen with a lightning bolt, but nothing would change. I tried factory reboot (power button, volume up and home key) and it seemed to start to reboot, but every time it boots past the Samsung Logo a blue “updating system” screen appears for a couple seconds, then the device restarts, over and over and over.

I tried Power Home and Down volume and was able to get the device to boot into Odin Mode. But then I powered off (by pressing all buttons) and the phone immediately went back into the reboot cycle. Now every time I plug it in, it does the reboot cycle. When it is not plugged in, it won’t turn on. When it is plugged in there is no LED indicator that the phone is charging. And possibly of note, I had the battery replaced a couple months ago, and it was not a Samsung Battery.

Solution: Accidentally dropping a device won’t lead to software. If the phone was working normally before it was dropped, then there’s no doubt you have a hardware problem on your hand. Because the phone was previously fixed by a non-Samsung personnel, you won’t be able to get any support from the manufacturer. The only thing that you can do now is to let a qualified third party technician check the phone so they can advise you whether or not it can be fixed. For this type of issue, the phone needs to be physically examined so an ocular inspection can be performed and a thorough hardware diagnostics can be done. If you’re lucky and the issue is simple, replacing a component like the battery many help. Otherwise, you’ll most probably consider ditching the phone for good, especially if the issue lies on the motherboard.

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