It’s easy to fall in love with the Galaxy S6. Samsung’s design is refined, there’s plenty of raw power under the hood, and the feature list is impressive. But as wonderful as it is, you can still find flaws. We’ve been gathering user feedback, checking out complaints, and searching for solutions to the biggest Galaxy S6 problems. Here’s what we’ve got so far:
Problem: Refreshing and restarting apps
There has been quite a bit of chatter about the Galaxy S6 having poor memory management. A lot of people are irritated to find apps refreshing when they return to them, or apps closing by themselves, despite the device apparently having free RAM. The S6 has 3GB of RAM, and you can get a snapshot of what’s in use by opening up Smart Manager and tapping on the RAM. The cause of the problem is unclear, but you can still try a few things:
- It’s a good idea for general performance and battery life to disable or uninstall any app you aren’t using regularly.
- Facebook and Facebook Messenger are known memory hogs. If you can live without them, it will probably make a discernible difference.
- Use another launcher. TouchWiz is better than it used to be, but it can still be pretty demanding. The Google Now Launcher or the Nova Launcher might help.
- This could be some kind of bug in the software. Samsung will roll out updates to alleviate issues like this, if it can, so keep an eye on Settings > About device > Software update > Update now.
Issue: Battery life is poor
The 2,550mAh-rated battery in the Galaxy S6 is not the biggest battery on the block, and a number of users are having issues with poor battery performance. The phone is quick to charge, but it’s also quick to drain, and a lot of people are not making it through the day without a top-up. The fact that there’s no removable battery makes this a bigger issue for some people.
- Start by turning off features that you aren’t using, and set the screen brightness as low as you can without making it tough to read. You can check out more general battery saving tips for the basics.
- Background syncing is likely to be causing a lot of battery drain. Do you need all that syncing? Check in Settings > Accounts, and turn off anything you really don’t need to sync in the background. Remember that this stuff will still sync when you check it.
- Some people report an improvement after switching off VoLTE or Wi-Fi calling. It will depend on your carrier whether these are available on your S6, but it’s worth checking.
- Go to Settings > Wi-Fi > More and turn Smart Network Switch off.
- Go to Settings > Wi-Fi > More > Advanced and turn Always Allow Scanning off.
- Some people report that connecting to a Wi-Fi router on 2.4GHz instead of 5GHz reduces battery drain. Your connection won’t be quite as fast, but it might be a trade-off worth making.
- Head into Settings > Battery, and you’ll find a Power saving mode that can really boost your battery life. However, there is a cost in terms of reduced brightness, vibration, and performance. Ultra power saving mode is only really suitable for emergencies, because it severely limits your S6 functionality.
- Consider getting a portable battery charger as a backup.
- Take a look in Settings > Battery and check out Battery usage. You can find power-guzzling apps and replace them, or try to reduce their consumption by turning off notifications.
- Go to Settings > Application manager and run through the list on the All tab. Any app you don’t use, tap on it, and Uninstall or Disable it.
- You may as well try wiping your cache partition — It can help sometimes, and it certainly won’t do any harm. Turn your S6 off, then hold down Power, Volume up, and Home together. You’ll get the recovery menu, and you can use the Volume buttons to highlight wipe cache partition, and then hit the Power button to select it. When it’s done, you want to highlight reboot system now with the Volume buttons, and then press Power to select it.
Glitch: Wi-Fi slow, won’t connect or drops
A lot of people run into problems with Wi-Fi when they get a new phone, and the Galaxy S6 is no exception. There are a lot of potential causes of a Wi-Fi problem. You might find that the connection is slow, maybe it simply won’t connect, or maybe it keeps dropping the connection at random.
- Turn your S6 and your router off, and then turn them on again. This often works, but it’s rarely a permanent fix.
- Go to Settings > Wi-Fi, long press on your troublesome router, then tap Forget network, and try setting it up from scratch.
- If you’re connecting to 5GHz and there’s a 2.4GHz option, try switching to see if it makes a difference.
- Use a free app like Wifi Analyzer to make sure that your channels aren’t too crowded. If you find that you’re using a busy channel, then try switching — It could make a huge difference.
- Check that the MAC filter on your router is off or add your Galaxy S6 MAC address. You should find it listed in Settings > Wi-Fi > More > Advanced.
- Make sure that Keep Wi-Fi on during sleep is set to Always. You’ll find it in Settings > Wi-Fi > More > Advanced.
- Make sure that your router firmware is up to date. Check with your ISP or manufacturer about updates.
Problem: Signal strength is weak
A few Galaxy S6 owners have been complaining about terrible signal strength and frequent dropped calls. There appears to be a major issue for people on Sprint specifically, but some people with other carriers have also had problems.
- Go to Settings > Mobile networks > Network mode and switch to CDMA/LTE, if you’re on Sprint or Verizon. If you’re with a different carrier, then Global might work better.
- For some Sprint users switching to CDMA only actually resulted in a faster, more stable connection than they could get with LTE. This could be because your local tower is being upgraded. If this is the case for you, then you’ll also want to complain to Sprint about it.
Issue: GPS not accurate
Most people are finding that the GPS on the Galaxy S6 is excellent, but a few people are having trouble getting accurate positioning. There are reports that it keeps losing the lock, and some fitness apps that track runs are returning odd results. Start by going into Settings > Location, make sure it’s on, and set to High accuracy.
- If you have Power saving mode turned on in Settings > Battery, then try turning it off. Now turn your Galaxy S6 off and on again.
- Go into any app that you are using GPS with, via Settings > Application manager, and tap Clear cache.
- To determine if you have a real fault, try installing the free GPS Test app. Ideally, compare results with another phone that also has the app running. If it’s not picking up the same satellites, then it may be a hardware fault. Contact Samsung, your carrier, or your retailer to ask about a replacement.
- You could try a factory reset. Backup everything first, and go to Settings > Backup & reset > Reset device > Erase everything. Now be careful about what you install afterwards, and take note of any app that impacts your GPS performance.
Problem: Won’t turn on
Some people have gotten a scare when their Galaxy S6 refused to turn on. Don’t panic. There’s probably an easy way around this.
- Hold down the Power button for a good ten seconds and you should see the S6 reboot and come to life.
- Try plugging it in with the original charger and cable it shipped with and leave for at least half an hour, then try holding down the Power button for ten seconds again.
- See if you can get the recovery menu to come up by holding down the Power, Home, and Volume up buttons together until you see the Android mascot onscreen. Highlight reboot system now using the Volume buttons, and use Power to select it.
- If your Galaxy S6 still won’t turn on, then it’s time to contact your carrier, retailer, or Samsung.
Bug: Flash always on
A few Samsung Galaxy S6 owners reported an issue where the LED flash seemed to be constantly on. It wasn’t full brightness, but looking at it in a dark room it was possible to discern a faint light coming from the LED flash. This sparked natural concerns about it draining the battery as well.
- Samsung is aware of this problem and has worked out a solution, which should reach you as an OTA update. You can check in Settings > About device > Software updates. There is no other known fix for this problem.
Glitch: Fingerprint scanner not working
There have been a lot of reports of problems with the fingerprint scanner on the Galaxy S6. Several owners are reporting that the scanner has stopped recognizing their fingerprints, though it may have been working fine before, and they can’t get access to the phone. If you can’t remember your backup password, there are other ways to get access.
- After it fails a few times, you should get the option to sign in with your Google account. Apparently, this might not work if you have 2-step Verification turned on. You’ll need to access your Google account on another device in order to turn it off. You’ll find it under My Account > Sign-in & security. Once that’s off, enter the details on your S6 and you should be able to unlock the phone.
- If you signed up and remember the details, then head to Samsung’s Find My Mobile website. You can use the Unlock my screen feature to get access.
- You could factory reset your S6, but this will completely wipe all data on the phone, so it’s really a last resort. If you want to do it, then start by turning the S6 off. Now press and hold the Power, Home, and Volume up buttons together until you see the Android mascot onscreen. Use the Volume down button to highlight wipe data/factory reset and the Power button to select it. Choose reboot system now when it’s done and set your S6 up from scratch.
- Before you try the workarounds, it’s worth holding down the Power button for ten seconds to get the Galaxy S6 to restart. Try the fingerprint scanner again when the S6 comes back on.
- Wipe the scanner with a clean cloth.
- Try pressing firmly and, if that doesn’t work, try pressing very lightly.
- If you set it up without a case on your S6, and then put a case on, it could be affecting the scanner. Try removing it and see if it makes a difference.
- If you do manage to gain access, then go to Settings > Lock screen and security > Fingerprints and make sure that you add new fingerprints and delete the old problem ones. Make sure that you move your finger around to cover different angles when you are adding new fingerprints and use all four slots to maximize your chances of it working.
Issue: Screen sensitivity
Quite a few reports have surfaced about problems with the Galaxy S6 screen sensitivity. Most people are finding that it isn’t always registering touches, seemingly at random. A few people have found that specific areas of the screen seem to be worse than others. You can test by typing *#0*# into the dialer.
- Start by turning it off and on again.
- If you’re using a case or a screen protector, then it may be worth taking them off to see if it makes any difference.
- You can check if an app is the likely culprit by booting into safe mode. Turn the phone off. Press and hold the Power button. As soon as the screen lights up, let go of Power and press and hold the Volume down button. It should say safe mode in the bottom left corner. You can reboot to get out of safe mode. If there are no problems in safe mode, then something you installed is probably causing the issue. You can try uninstalling things and testing one-by-one, or opt for a factory reset and install selectively. If you do factory reset, it may be wise not to restore a backup and just set the S6 up fresh instead, as you may reintroduce the problem.
- If nothing has worked, then it’s time to contact your carrier, retailer, or Samsung and ask about a replacement.
Problem: Persistent pop-up
There have been a few complaints about a persistent pop-up relating to terms and conditions for Enhanced features, Profile sharing, and Simple sharing. The problem is, if you decline the terms, they just pop up again later.
- If you tap Agree the pop-up will go away, but that means you have agreed to the terms and conditions. You can still turn the features off via the Contacts app, by tapping on your profile, tapping your name, and turning Profile sharing and Simple sharing off.
- You may be able to avoid accepting the terms by tapping Decline and then going into Contacts, tapping your name under My profile, then tap Profile sharing > Registered information. Tap More at the top right and select Deregister phone number.
- Some people also report success, without accepting the terms, after a factory reset, but it’s a drastic step to take.
Glitch: Unfortunately, Contacts has stopped.
This error message commonly pops up when people try to make a call, but it can happen at other times too. It’s not confined to the Galaxy S6, it’s an error we commonly see on other phones too. It should be fairly easy to fix. Here’s what to do:
- Go to Settings > Application manager and swipe over to the All tab and find Contacts. Tap Clear cache and Clear data. That should take care of it.
- If the problem persists, then try Clear cache and Clear data with Dialer in Settings > Application manager > All. Restart the phone afterwards and see if the problem is gone.
- This message can also be triggered by another app that’s trying to access your contacts. For example, a lot of people associated this glitch with Google+ and found that uninstalling, disabling, or rolling back updates stopped it from happening. You can test whether an app is to blame by going into safe mode. Hold down the Power button and choose Power off. Press and hold Volume down and Power You can let go of Power when the screen lights up, but keep holding Volume down until you see the home screen. It should say safe mode at the bottom left. Test it out, if the problem doesn’t reoccur in safe mode then an app is causing it. Just reboot the phone to leave safe mode and you can test by removing apps one by one, or go straight for a factory reset and reinstall selectively.
Problem: Call volume too low
A lot of Galaxy S6 owners have been complaining that the volume is too low during calls. For some people, the problem is at their end with the microphone, and callers on the other end can’t hear them well. In other cases, people are having trouble hearing the other caller, suggesting an issue with the speaker.
- Use a Bluetooth headset. This might be a good way to test if you have a hardware problem. If the volume is fine on a Bluetooth headset then there’s a good chance there’s something wrong with your microphone or speaker.
- If you’re having trouble hearing the other caller, try putting them on Speaker by tapping the Speaker icon at the bottom left.
- The first thing to check is that there’s no plastic covering you’ve not removed, or debris or dust stuck in the speaker or microphone. Use a soft brush or compressed air and make sure they’re both clean. If you use a case then you should also try making a call without it on, to see if that might causing your issue.
- The obvious thing to do is tap the Volume up When you see the volume bar appear on screen tap the gear icon at the right and set all of your volume levels.
- There is also an Extra volume option during calls. When you’re on a call look for the phone icon in the middle which says Extra volume underneath and tap it.
- If you’re still having issues contact your carrier, retailer, or Samsung and ask about a replacement handset.
Glitch: Unfortunately, the process com.google.process.gapps has stopped
The error message “Unfortunately, the process com.google.process.gapps has stopped” is a fairly common one and it can pop up on Android smartphones from time to time regardless of model.
- First of all, make sure that your apps, including the Play Store, are fully up to date. Open up the Play Store, tap menu on the left, and then tap My apps and Update all. You’ll want to be connected to Wi-Fi when you do this to avoid using a lot of data.
- Try going to Settings > Storage and then tap on Cached data and clear it.
- If that doesn’t work it’s time to wipe the cache partition. Press and hold Power and then choose Power off. Now press and hold the Power, Volume up, and Home buttons together. You should see the Android mascot and then the recovery menu. Use Volume down to highlight wipe cache partition and Power to select it. Select reboot system now when it’s done.
- If the issue is still occurring you could try a factory reset as a last resort. Back up your files and check out how to factory reset the Galaxy S6.
Bug: Missing quick toggle for mobile data
A few Galaxy S6 owners have experienced a weird bug where the quick toggles for certain functions disappear. For most people it was Mobile data that went missing, but thankfully Samsung was quick to release a solution.
- Open up Galaxy Apps and look for an app called QuickPanel Restore in Samsung’s store. Install it, open it up and tap the Restore button, and all your missing quick toggles will return.
Problem: Email not working properly
It seems that there are a lot of different issues cropping up with email on the Galaxy S6. Some people report that push email isn’t working reliably, some have found that sync won’t work manually, and there have also been problems with deleting emails. In extreme cases, emails don’t seem to be coming through at all.
- Some people place the blame for email issues on the email app. You could try using an alternative. Gmail, Outlook, and Nine could be worth checking out, depending on what you need.
- The first thing to try is deleting your email account from the Galaxy S6. Reboot the phone and add it again from scratch. This will often resolve issues.
- If it’s specifically a work email account that you’re having issues with, then talk to someone in the IT department and see if they can help.
- Try wiping the cache partition. Press and hold Power and then choose Power off. Now press and hold the Power, Volume up, and Home buttons together. You should see the Android mascot and then the recovery menu. Use Volume down to highlight wipe cache partition and Power to select it. Select reboot system now when it’s done.
- Your last resort is a factory reset. Just make sure you back up precious files first.
Problem: Performance is slow
There is nothing worse than a sluggish phone, and the Galaxy S6 isn’t immune to it. If you notice that your Galaxy S6 is taking too long to open apps and transition between home screens, there are a few simple things you can do to rectify it.
A factory reset is probably your best bet to fix lag, but that can be a pain. Here are some simpler things to try first that won’t erase your data and apps.
- The first thing to do is reboot your phone. Just tap and hold the power button, then select Restart.
- A reboot might only be a temporary fix, so if you notice that your Galaxy S6 starts lagging again after a a few days, you might want to try clearing the phone’s cache partition. Don’t worry, the system cache only deals with temporary files created by apps and the Android system. It has nothing to do with your personal data. Here’s how to clear the system cache:
- Turn your Galaxy S6 off by pressing and holding the Power button and selecting Power Off.
- Now press and hold the Home, Power, and Volume Up buttons simultaneously until the Samsung logo appears.
- Tap the Volume Down button a few times until Wipe Cache Partition is highlighted, and select it by pressing the Power button.
- Once the process is completed, highlight the Reboot option and press the Power button to confirm a reboot.
- If you’re still having problems, you can turn down animations:
- Open Settings and look to see if Developer Options is visible. If not, proceed to step 2, or if so, proceed to step 5.
- Select About Phone, which is usually at the bottom.
- Now tap on the Build Number seven times. You will see a message saying that Developer Options is now enabled.
- Return back to the main Settings screen.
- Tap on Developer Options and look for Window Animation Scale, Transition Animation Scale, and Animator Animation Scale.
- These should all be set to 1x by default. You can adjust the settings for each to .5x.
- If your Galaxy S6 continues to be sluggish after trying all of the above, it’s probably time for a factory reset. You’ll want to make sure that you have all your data backed up before proceeding:
- Open Settings and select Backup and Reset.
- Select Factory Reset.
Problem: Overheating issues
Do you find that your Galaxy S6 is warm or hot to the touch? The processor is probably overworked. This often happens when playing a graphically intensive game. Let your phone rest for a few minutes to give it time to cool down. In most cases, this will solve your issue, but you still might find that your S6 constantly runs hot.
- The first thing to do is reboot your phone. Just tap and hold the Power button, then tap on Restart.
- Unfortunately, a reboot might only be a temporary fix, which means an app could be running in the background that is forcing the processor to run too much. Try deleting the apps that you have installed most recently. While you’re at it, you should also delete those apps that you rarely use. You can always reinstall them at a later date if you find you need them again.
- Open the app drawer by tapping on the icon of mini squares at the bottom right of any home screen.
- Long press on any apps that you want to uninstall and drag them to the top left over the word, “uninstall.”
Unfortunately you won’t be able to uninstall most bloatware (apps that came pre-installed on the phone), but you can disable them.
- Open Settings and select Applications.
- Select Application Manager at the top.
- Swipe left until you get to the All tab.
- Tap on an app that want to disable.
- Select Disable.
- If you later want to re-enable any of these apps, just swipe to the Disabled tab in the Application Manager, individually select each one, and select Enable.
If you’re Galaxy S6 still overheats, then you probably need to do a factory reset. This will erase all your data, so make sure everything is backed up before proceeding.
- Open Settings and select Backup and Reset.
- Select Factory Reset.
Issue: Screen won’t auto rotate
If you find that your Galaxy S6’s screen won’t auto rotate, it might be a defect in the hardware. Samsung has acknowledged the issue with the Galaxy S6 Edge, but there are some Galaxy S6 owners that have the problem as well. It appears to be an issue with fast charging in that the charging process overheats and damages the gyroscope, which is near the USB port. There’s still a chance that the problem is software related though, so try the potential solutions below.
- Make sure that you didn’t accidentally turn off Auto Rotate:
- Swipe down from the top of the phone’s display to open your notification panel.
- Samsung’s Quick Toggles are at the top of the panel. Look for Screen Rotation.
- If Screen Rotation isn’t highlighted in yellow, than it’s off. Turn it on by tapping it.
- If the Screen Rotation setting wasn’t the issue, try rebooting your phone by long pressing on the Power button and selecting Restart.
- If you’re Galaxy S6 still doesn’t auto rotate, then it’s likely a hardware issue. You need to contact your carrier or Samsung directly. Samsung’s customer service number in the U.S. is 1-800-SAMSUNG.
Glitch: Bluetooth connectivity issues
Bluetooth connectivity issues plague just about every smartphone, and it’s often very difficult to determine the root cause. Most times it’s the result of a buggy firmware update, and a fix from Samsung could be necessary. There are still some simple things you can try that might get you back up and running though.
- If you’re having problems connecting a device you already paired successfully before, then turning off Bluetooth and turning it back on fixes it most of the time. Swipe down to open your notification panel and look for Bluetooth at the top of the Quick Toggles menu. Tap it once to turn off, wait about 10 seconds, and tap it again to turn it back on.
- If toggling Bluetooth doesn’t work, then try to reboot the phone. Tap and hold the Power button and select Restart.
- If you’re still having trouble connecting to a previously paired device, than it needs to be paired again.
- Open Settings, and select Bluetooth.
- Find your device and tap the Gear icon at the right edge of the screen for that device.
- Tap Unpair towards the top.
- Now pair the device again.
- If you’re having trouble pairing a new device, then restart your phone by tapping on the Power button, followed by selecting Restart.
- If you still can’t pair a new device, then you should contact the manufacturer of the device you’re trying to pair to.
Problem: Auto brightness turns off automatically
Do you find that you constantly have to turn on auto brightness because it turns off on its own?
- There’s a good chance that you installed the Car Mode app on your Galaxy S6. Uninstall it by opening the app drawer, then long press on the Car Mode icon, and drag it to the top where it says “uninstall.”
- If auto rotate still turns off on its own, a third party reading app that adjusts the display’s colors and/or brightness could be the culprit. If so, uninstall it by using the same method as uninstalling Car Mode.
Problem: Phone isn’t charging properly
Some people have noticed their Galaxy S6 isn’t charging the way it should be, or not charging at all. There are several things you can do before assuming the worst has happened.
- You can try charging your phone in Power Saving Mode or Ultra Power Saving Mode. Both do the same thing, although the latter will limit your device and reduce its brightness, vibrations, and performance even more. To enable either mode, go to Settings > Battery, and swipe the slider to turn it on.
- Check your phone’s charge port and the wire of the charger to see if either one has any defects. If possible, use another charger.
- Restart the device by holding down the Power button for several seconds.
- Uninstall any apps you’re no longer using. Having too many apps installed and running in the background may be draining your phone’s battery at a similar rate, or faster, than it can be charged.
- You can factory reset your phone by holding down the Power, Home, and Volume up buttons until you see the Android mascot. Use the Volume down button to highlight wipe data/factory reset and the Power button to select it. After it’s finished, you can choose reboot system now and set your S6 up as if it were a brand new phone.
- If the aforementioned suggestions don’t fix the issue, it may be a hardware problem. In that case, contact Samsung, your carrier, or your retailer and ask about a replacement.
Problem: Unable to swipe to delete email
After updating to Android 6.0.1, some users have reportedly been unable to delete emails within the native email application by swiping.
- Try deleting the app’s cache. To do so, go to Settings > Application Manager, then tap the All tab and find your email application. From there, choose Storage and tap Clear Cache and Clear Data. Keep in mind that you will need to re-configure the app to suit your preferences again.
Issue: Device no longer syncs
After updating to Android 6.0.1, some users are noticing that their phone no longer auto syncs data with apps such as Calendar, Contacts, and Gmail. When the phone does attempt to sync, the sync icon may also remain indefinitely.
- Wiping your cache partition may fix the problem. Start by turning your S6 completely off, and then simultaneously holding the Volume Up, Home, and Power buttons. After some time, you’ll get the recovery menu, and you can use the Volume buttons to navigate to the wipe cache partition option and the Power button to select it. When that’s done, choose reboot system now.
- You can also try a factory reset. To do so, hold down the Power, Home, and Volume up buttons until you see the Android mascot. Use the Volume down button to move to wipe data/factory reset and the Power button to select it.
Problem: Can’t install latest Android update
When attempting to update the S6, the device will download the data as it normally would before calling for a restart. After restarting and proceeding with the update, however, the update fails before continuing to boot the S6. Once the device has finished booting, the user is notified that the update has failed due to an interruption.
- Try updating the S6 using Samsung Kies, a program for the PC and Mac that can be used to push data and firmware updates to Samsung devices. Download Kies3 from here, and then connect your S6 to your computer with a USB cable. The Kies interface should appear, and under the Basic Information section, you should see the Firmware Upgrade option. Select that, then follow the instructions to update your S6.
- Perform a factory reset. To do so, hold down the Power, Home, and Volume up buttons until you see the Android mascot. Use the Volume down button to move to wipe data/factory reset and the Power button to select it.
- Contact Samsung or your carrier, as they may be able to push the update to your phone over the air.
- Contact Samsung, your carrier, or your retailer to ask about a replacement device.
Problem: Icons don’t change after applying a new theme
Following the installation of a small update for the S6, the icons will retain the default appearance even after changing themes.
- Delete the theme and re-download it. To delete themes, go to Settings > Themes, and tap the theme you want to delete. If you don’t see the option to delete a theme that’s currently in use, switch to another theme and try to delete it again.
- Clear the cache partition by turning the S6 off, and then holding the Volume Up, Home, and Power buttons until you get the recovery menu. Use the Volume buttons to move to the wipe cache partition option and use the Power button to select it. Choose reboot system now after the process is done.
- Consider installing the Unicon app, which allows you change the icons. However, keep in mind that this particular app requires your device has Root and Xposed Framework installed.
- Perform a factory reset after backing up your data. To do so, hold down the Power, Home, and Volume up buttons until you see the Android mascot. Use the Volume down button to move to wipe data/factory reset and the Power button to select it.
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