This is a list of the most common Galaxy S10 problems and how to fix them, that way you can get your phone running its best. The S10 has plenty of fancy features, but it isn’t perfect. Whether that’s the fingerprint scanner acting up, camera and keyboard problems, or even Android 10 issues. Here’s what you need to know. These fixes also apply to the Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 Plus, and Galaxy S10 5G.
You don’t have to go to a carrier store or call Samsung support for help. Instead, follow our tips and fix your Galaxy S10 problems right from home.
We’ll walk you through the most frequent complaints, then offer fixes, tips or resources to address them. Keep in mind that everyone uses phones differently, and not everyone will have the same issues. Let’s get started.
Update: The December security patch for US carriers and unlocked Galaxy S10 models, fixed a lot of problems from the September and October software. Plus, as of December 16th, the official Galaxy Android 10 update is available around the globe and on several U.S. models, including T-Mobile and Sprint. Users reported a difference in battery life, fixes for auto-focus problems in 3rd party apps, weird password issues, or overheating while charging.
The Android 10 update delivered Samsung’s One UI 2.0 software upgrade and added a bunch of new features and bug fixes. Since then, we’ve seen security updates and maintenance releases in January and February of 2020, with more coming soon. Then, owners can expect the One UI 2.1 update in the near future, which is the current software on Samsung’s new Galaxy S20 lineup.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Fingerprint Scanner Problems
First things first, we have to address the fingerprint scanner. At the last minute, Samsung put screen protectors on all Galaxy S10 models prior to shipping, and that’s making the fingerprint scanner setup process very difficult. You have to press really hard, and you’ll likely get a few failed attempts during the setup process. DO NOT WORRY.
Samsung issued a day-one software update that drastically improved the fingerprint scanner speed and reliability. Then, in April (and September) Samsung released more updates that surprisingly made a huge difference. Users are reporting a vastly better experience with the fingerprint sensor. Additionally, once you remove that cheap plastic film Samsung put on the phones it works way better.
That said, if you’ve received the latest software update, took off the screen protector and are still dealing with problems we have a few tips. For one, move your finger in several different locations while you do the registration process. Then, register your fingertip a few times holding the phone with one hand, as that’s how you’ll likely unlock it the most. Don’t hold the phone in one hand and use the other to tap. Register your finger while holding the phone as you normally would.
If you’re using a case we recommend redoing the entire finger scan process again, to get the angle right. Plus, we’re hearing registering the same finger twice substantially improves the results, too. And finally, whether you do or don’t use a screen protector, try this trick to increase screen sensitivity. Plus, the new Android 10 release arriving in December has several fingerprint scanner enhancements and reliability improvements.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Accidental Screen Touch Problems
Samsung’s Galaxy S10 is still new and you can expect several updates within the first month or two that will address most of your complaints, for now, keep reading.
Another complaint we keep seeing is users are accidentally touching the side of the phone and opening the Edge apps panel, launching apps, or just waking the screen by accident. With almost no bezels, there isn’t anywhere to put your hand during use. That said, one quick change in settings will prevent these accidental taps. Or, just do what I did and disable the edge panel.
- Go to Settings and select Display
- Scroll down to Accidental Touch Protection
- Flip the switch to ON
Not only does this help prevent accidental taps and touches in general, but it also helps with accidental taps in a pocket, purse, bag, or dark areas. Furthermore, we’re seeing complaints about color shift and bad viewing angles on the S10, where the screen has a red tint to it. We’re hoping this can be fixed by a software update, as we saw a similar situation with the Galaxy S8 in 2017.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Apps That Are Not Full Screen
With a big 6.1 or 6.4-inch Quad-HD screen that’s long and skinny, some apps don’t use the entire screen on your Galaxy S10. This is due to the long aspect ratio, similar to 16:9 widescreen movies back in the day having black bars, not to mention the cutout at the top for the camera.
Most apps and games scale up to fit the entire screen, but some don’t. If so follow these steps to fix the issue. That guide is from the Galaxy S8, but the same steps apply even on Android 9 Pie One UI.
- Pull down the notification bar and head to Settings (gear-shaped icon near the top right)
- Tap on Display
- Select the option labeled Full screen Apps
- Tap on any app that isn’t full screen, and switch it from Auto to Full Screen
At this point, most apps should work fine and developers already fixed this. If not, you can force them into full screen mode. Now it will automatically scale to the new 18.5:9 aspect ratio and fill your entire display with content. Additionally, when you launch an app and it doesn’t use the entire screen, you’ll see a little popup at the bottom of the screen to quickly toggle it to full-view. Tap that and you’re all done.
If apps or games get cut off after you do this, reverse the steps and change it back to Auto.
Sprint Galaxy S10 No 4G LTE Problems
A huge issue for all three models of the Galaxy S10 on Sprint is no 4G LTE. These phones are stuck on old, slow 3G speeds where the internet almost doesn’t work, videos won’t load, and the phones are nearly a paperweight. Some people have 4G LTE, but not for very long, and the constant searching for a signal and switching from 3G to 4G LTE makes the phones very hot. Spring has acknowledged this issue several times, and finally fixed it.
We saw one complaint that it’s back with the Android 10 beta, so if you have any issues drop us a comment below.
On April 16th Sprint issued yet another software update for the Galaxy S10 (software version ASD5) and that should fix your 4G LTE problems. And while dozens of users said they’re finally seeing 4G LTE internet speeds and improved battery life, a lot of users like Tim from Twitter are still struggling.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 App Drawer Button Missing
If you’re coming from an older Galaxy smartphone you’re in for a surprise. There are no physical buttons, no home key, and no app tray icon. They’re all gone. Some owners are getting frustrated that they can’t find all of their installed apps. Swipe up, and they’ll appear. Or, here’s how to go back to the old style.
- Press and hold down on any blank space on your screen. It will zoom out to an edit and layout page, and give you setting or wallpaper options.
- Tap the gear-shaped settings button.
- Next hit the option in settings labeled “Apps Button” and select the “show apps button”.
This way you’ll have a button that launches a tray with all of your apps like before. Or, if you’re coming from an iPhone select “Home screen only” if you want all the apps on your home screen like iOS.
Galaxy S10 Freezing & Unresponsive Problems
Is your Galaxy S10 or some of its apps freezing and becoming unresponsive? We saw this with the S9, and now a few reports are emerging on the new Galaxy S10. You might experience this in the contacts app or phone dialer while trying to make a call.
If your S10 is frozen or unresponsive press and hold both the power and volume down buttons at the same time, and hold them down for 7-8 seconds. The phone will turn off, reboot, and start fresh. This will not harm anything and simply forces the phone to restart, even if it’s completely frozen and the screen is black. Give it a try.
Additionally, the Galaxy S10 May update “XXU1ASE5” caused problems for multiple users, so much that Samsung pulled and delayed the update. We’re hearing reports of fingerprint issues, freezing, lag, and more. The company quickly fixed this problem with the June update, and a few more tweaks in September and October. Read more about this problem right here.
Since then, we’ve seen all the freezing and unresponsive issues completely go away and the Galaxy S10 runs great. That said, we may see a few new problems emerge with the Android 10 update. So, be prepared for when you get this big update.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Bluetooth Problems
For the first time in a few years, we’re not seeing too many BT complaints yet. That said, you’re likely to experience a few issues with Bluetooth in your car, stereo, or accessories, although the Android 10 One UI 2.0 update has several improvements to BT. With so many speakers, headphones and other accessories you’re bound to have an issue here and there.
If you can’t see devices or do see them and they won’t connect, you’re not alone. Sometimes the connection is poor and audio cuts out too. Thanks to Bluetooth 5.0 on the Galaxy S10 most people shouldn’t face any problems. If you do, simply toggle Bluetooth OFF, then turn it back on again. This fixes the issue 95% of the time. Or, forget the device entirely and redo the “pairing” process.
Users can also head to Settings > Apps > and find “Bluetooth” and clear the cache. This will erase all pairings, which fixed problems on the Galaxy Note 8 and S9. Otherwise, try our biggest tip for ANY problem, and reboot your phone. Yup, just a simple reboot usually fixes just about everything.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 WiFi & GPS Problems
With every phone release, we see reports about WiFi problems. And, we’re already seeing comments about poor performance, WiFi drops, connection issues and more with the Galaxy S10, even though it supports the new WiFi 6 protocol. This is almost never a problem with the phone itself, and usually something else.
We’ve found that Samsung’s super helpful SmartSwitch tool for transferring an old phone to a new phone can often be the problem for bad WiFi. The software transferred the name, password, and connection for you. That’s nice, but that might also be your problem.
Those experiencing Galaxy S10 WiFi problems have a few things they can try. First, we recommend you forget your WiFi network and re-enter the password on the phone. Do this by heading to Settings > Connections > WiFi. Push and hold your home internet connection and tap forget network on the pop-up. Then search for a WiFi connection, find yours, put in the password and it should work. Better yet, reset your network to default settings. We’ve found unplugging the power to your router for 10 seconds will give it a fresh start. Then try connecting your Galaxy S10 one more time. Or, buy a new router if you keep having issues.
Additionally, we have one more super helpful tip for WiFi issues. Go to Settings > Connections > WiFi > Advanced Settings > and disable the WiFi sleep option. That way WiFi stays on no matter what, even when the screen is off. Now all your apps and services continue to use WiFi, and you don’t need to keep the screen on while you update apps.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Always-On Display and Lift to Wake Problems
Samsung added a new “lift to wake” feature to the Galaxy S10. When you pick it up the screen automatically comes to life. It’s nice, but some people don’t like it. Plus, we’re seeing a ton of complaints that the lift to wake or AOD feature is making the phone wakeup in pockets, which is draining the battery.
So, here’s how to change, customize, and tweak the always-on display. We’ll also show you how to turn off the lift to wake feature.
Go to Settings > Lock screen > and tap on Always-On Display. From here, you can customize and change the entire experience. Personally, we recommend you leave this on as it’ll cut down on how often you wake up the phone — resulting in longer battery life.
Then, go back to the main Settings menu and go to Advanced Features > Motions and gestures > and uncheck the Lift to wake feature. While you’re here, kill the “double-tap to wake” if it keeps going off in your pocket. Samsung will fix this with a software update, eventually.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Wet Speaker Problems
The Galaxy S10 and S10+ are IP68 dust and water-resistant. Meaning you can take it in the shower, drop it in the pool, or use it at depths of around 5 ft without worry. The phone can technically handle around 5ft for 30 minutes and still work fine. Even the dual speakers can handle a little water.
However, if the speaker or grill gets wet your phone will sound funny and muffled. This isn’t a concern and there’s no damage either, you just need to try it out.
Samsung uses a coating on the inside of the device to keep the components safe. Then, something they call “surface tension” to keep water out of both speakers. If your music or speaker sounds funny you just need to let it dry. Or, tap it gently against your hand to push any water out of the speaker. Most likely there’s nothing wrong with your phone, just give it time.
Bonus tip: Never EVER charge your phone when it is wet. Let the USB Type-C charging port completely dry before you plug in your phone to refill the battery.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Battery Life Problems
With a bigger 3,400 mAh battery in the Galaxy S10 and an even bigger 4,100 mAh pack in the S10+, these phones get some of the best battery life we’ve ever seen. It’s pretty impressive. Still, some users may run into issues or battery problems that will need attention.
First, here’s our big guide to fixing bad Galaxy S10 battery life problems. Your next step to solving any battery situation is by heading to Settings > Device Maintenance > Battery > Battery Usage to see what’s going on. This gives you a detailed breakdown on what uses what, and even shows the #1 battery drain at the top of the list.
If an app is malfunctioning or misbehaving it’ll use too much battery and appear at the top of this list. If you see anything other than Display, screen, Android System, or Android OS at the top, or a game you just played, then something isn’t right. Disable or reinstall any app or service that’s draining more battery than it should.
Back in March, an update fixed a “deep sleep” issue for those with a Samsung Exynos version of the phone (mainly models outside the US). Then, another update for all other models arrived and we saw similar battery-enhancing changes in September, October, and now with Android 10 in December.
Bonus tip: The September Galaxy S10 updates wrecked battery life for the US carrier models, mainly AT&T and Verizon. Don’t worry though, as we have a super simple way to fix it. If you haven’t made this change in settings, you’ll notice a huge increase once you do.
Basically, turn off any and all network or carrier enhancement or diagnostic tools. The June/July/September update for the AT&T Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus added something called “AT&T mobile network diagnostics” to the mobile networks settings menu and is ON by default. Turn this off using our steps in the image above, and look for something similar from Verizon or T-Mobile.
How to Fix Galaxy S10 Camera Problems
Initially, we didn’t see any big complaints about the Galaxy S10 camera, but a few users on Reddit shared reports of their problems. One being the front camera is way too close when you use apps outside of Samsung’s camera app. Furthermore, the June update ruined the Galaxy S10 camera in 3rd party apps like Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat, especially while trying to record video.
The summer security patches wrecked auto-focus for the Galaxy S10 on both AT&T and T-Mobile. My AT&T Galaxy S10+ was almost completely unusable with Snapchat or Instagram, and never focused on the subject while trying to take photos or video. We’re seeing several reports about this from users. Samsung is aware of this problem, and the August update fixed it, mostly. Unfortunately, Snapchat still cannot use the rear cameras on the Galaxy S10+, as they go completely out of focus. So far the only fix we’ve found is installing a version of Snapchat that’s 6-months old. Like Snapchat v10.57 right here. This is still a problem as of December 2019.
Updates: Samsung and AT&T issued another update on July 31st, and followed that by a bigger one on August 26th (in the US) both claiming to have camera improvements. 3rd party apps are focusing better now, but it’s still not perfect. The September update on Verizon improved the camera too. Better yet, the October update added Note 10 camera features to the S10, which are pretty awesome. We’re seeing 1-2 more Note 10 camera options hit the Galaxy S10 with the Android 10 update too.
We’re also seeing a report that the buttons for the three rear cameras don’t always switch to that specific lens. I’m not seeing this issue, but if you are, try rebooting your phone. Then, users are reporting poor lighting and a super dark super slow-motion video experience. The 960 FPS slow-mo feature needs a lot of light for the best experience, so if you try it indoors, you won’t enjoy the results. That’s not a problem, it’s just how the new technology works so far.
Reboot Your Galaxy S10 to Fix Most Problems
Before we share our last tip, try a simple reboot. Almost every problem we hear from friends, family, or see online can quickly be fixed by rebooting your Galaxy S10. Seriously, before you try anything major, reboot the phone. Not receiving text messages, reboot your phone. Your sound isn’t working, reboot the phone.
Press and hold the power button on the right side of your Galaxy S10, then tap restart. Within about 1 minute you’ll be up and running with almost every problem gone.
Also, go to Settings > Device Maintenance > and tap the 3-dots in the top corner and select Auto Restart. Now, choose the time and day of the week, like Wednesday at 4 AM. This way your phone will reboot once a week at night so performance stays at its best, and problems are a thing of the past.
How to Factory Reset the Galaxy S10
Most owners won’t experience any major problems with the Galaxy S10 or S10+. If you tried everything we mentioned above and checked with your carrier for help, we do have one last step you can try before looking into a replacement. The last resort to fix big problems is doing a factory data reset. This will erase all user data, apps, messages, and content from the phone. Only do this if something is seriously wrong and a show-stopping problem.
Keep in mind that you will want to backup any data before you proceed. Go to Settings > General Management > and hit Reset to get started.
This process will only take a few minutes and will restore the original software that came with your phone. Galaxy S10 owners can use Samsung SmartSwitch or Google restore to get all their apps back. Again, this is the last resort if you have major problems. If this doesn’t fix it, consider reaching out to Samsung or your carrier for a replacement phone.
I also recommend owners backup their phones and do a complete factory data wipe and erase everything after the update to Android 10 and the One UI 2.0 software. Then, restore everything and enjoy the update. You don’t have to do this, but I’ve found that big updates tend to cause a few little issues, and starting from a fresh slate is typically best. Use Samsung SmartSwitch to backup and restore your stuff.
In closing, here’s what you need to know about what’s coming next. The Samsung Galaxy S10 is just over a year old and got brand new software to kickoff 2020. Samsung issued a day-one software update, fixed problems with updates in June, September, and October, and surprisingly enough, delivered Android 10 before the end of the year.
Keep in mind that Samsung’s One UI 2.0 running on Android 10 is brand new, just started hitting devices in mid-December 2019, and finished in January. And while the One UI 2.0 update is great it did add a few issues that will be fixed in March, April, or later this year with the One UI 2.1 update. Currently, the only phones with One UI 2.1 are the Galaxy S20 family.
Galaxy software is always improving. The company will release Android 10, then another big update within the first month of its arrival to fix problems, then continue to refine the experience. Combine both the things we just mentioned and your Galaxy S10 experience should only improve moving forward.
Basically, just know that a few more updates are coming soon, like Android 10 and One UI 2.0 in a week or two, or in early 2020. For now, drop us a comment below if you’re experiencing any other major issues and we’ll do our best to help, or research a fix for you. Otherwise, enjoy everything your phone has to offer and this newest software upgrade.
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