It looks like this weekend we’re on bug duty. This time around, we’re going to present to you a short round-up of prominent Galaxy S5 bugs on Lollipop in the spirit of the weekend and you can check out the first installment in the LG G3 bugs guide too, if you’re curious. The Galaxy S5 with Lollipop isn’t the best, as most of us know, since TouchWiz is a prominent part of the UI and it influences the way in which the Galaxy S5 behaves. Since we can’t get rid of TouchWiz on the Galaxy S5, we are going to try and work around Samsung’s own skin.
Surprisingly, the number of Galaxy S5 bugs which have to do with the Android Lollipop update installation isn’t that high. Samsung took their time to approve the build and release the update to Galaxy S5 devices and it managed to bypass bugs that Motorola didn’t for example. Of course there still are some bugs, as that’s a given for any new software update, but the companies involved are working it out.
One very big and threatening Galaxy S5 bug which is actually quite surprising is the fingerprint bug. Although it’s not actually a bug, it’s more of a vulnerability and it has to do with Android as well. The fingerprint sensor found in the home button of the Galaxy S5 is vulnerable to hackers as they can infiltrate your smartphone and pull fingerprint models from the save data from the phone itself. Luckily, the bug does not reside within Android 5.0 Lollipop, only in older version of the software. That being said, if you went ahead and installed Android 5.0 Lollipop on the Galaxy S5, you should be ok. If not, Samsung is urging you to do so.
Although comparatively, Android 5.0 Lollipop on the Galaxy S5 is pretty smooth, there are still bugs in the software that will impact user experience. Samsung even paused the release of Lollipop for the Galaxy S5 for a while until they could further refine and tweak the build. That lead to the cleaner version that was resumed afterwards. Samsung also chose to fix Galaxy S5 bugs with micro-updates which it already started rolling out to carriers across the world.
The most common Galaxy S5 bugs users have been complaining about are not that out of the ordinary: battery drain, overheating, forced app crashes and heart rate monitor issues. Now we have to be aware of the fact that some of the fixes proposed by users will not work for everyone. Feel free to try the ones you haven’t and tell us if they worked. Also, let us know if you have encountered other bugs on the Galaxy S5 since updating to Android Lollipop.
Battery drain is the most repetitive problem in the smartphone industry, and one we’ve discussed quite a few times before. Skip to the next paragraph if you don’t have these issues. The Galaxy S5 battery life should be fixed with micro-updates, but until then, here are three things that you should do. First, charging cycles. Go through at least 3 charging cycles, which means that you will let your Galaxy S5 discharge completely and then set it down charging, only to have it fully charged before resuming normal use. Go through these and if the battery life doesn’t get better, move on to the next step. Find out what’s using up most of your battery life and if it’s a third-party app, get rid of it or update it. If there isn’t an update available for the app that would optimize it for Android Lollipop, you will be better off not having the app until an update becomes available. The last thing you can do to alleviate battery life (besides the usual battery saving modes and dialing down LTE use) is a factory reset. Unpleasant, but effective.
To tackle overheating Galaxy S5 issues, you can always use the tips that you find for battery drain, because they should be just as effective. If the overheating problem persists, you might want to abandon the case that you are using. Keep in mind that overheating is absolutely normal under certain usage circumstances. That means that if you’re on 4G LTE playing online games for the better part of an hour, it’s normal for the Galaxy S5 (or any phone for that matter) to overheat. If you’re using the camera a lot and are using flash as well, or recording video for a long time, it’s normal to have overheating problems. But, if the Galaxy S5 keeps overheating to the point where it just shuts down even if you’re not using much of anything, you should hurriedly take it to the store to have it replaced if you’re lucky enough to still have warranty. If not, you can try rooting the phone and installing a custom ROM like CyanogenMod for example and see if that helps.
Wi-Fi problems, app crashes, random shutdowns, extreme battery drain, extreme overheating and heart rate sensor problems aren’t widespread as they seem to be affecting certain Galaxy S5 units with certain carriers. Carriers in the UK and in the U.S. seem to be most affected and Samsung promised that these “localized” problems would be fixed with the micro-updates.
These issues, like the heart rate sensor acting out (turning on and staying on whenever the screen is on) don’t have very effective fixes at the time of writing. You can uninstall Google Fit and the Galaxy Gear app, as users reported this fixed their constantly on heart rate monitor. Another fix you can try for the Galaxy S5 heart rate monitor bug is to turn off Activity Detection in the Settings menu. If that doesn’t work, try this: go to S Health > More > Manage Items > turn off heart rate monitor and stress monitor. The good news is that the most recent micro-update (Google Play Services update) released at the end of April fixed the issue, so be on the lookout for that if it hasn’t hit you yet.
Those of you who have Galaxy S5 Wi-Fi connection problems like Wi-Fi dropping, not connecting or randomly turning off should try disabling Smart Network Switch in the Wi-Fi settings as some users found that it helped with their connectivity issues. Another user who couldn’t get the Wi-Fi or Bluetooth to turn on at all had to take the phone back for a replacement Galaxy S5, so if easy fixes like a factory reset, reboot, and network reset don’t work and your Wi-Fi won’t turn on, that might be your best bet. You could read up about custom ROMs and flash one of those, but I would only recommend that to advanced Android users.
Some Galaxy S5 users have reported having widget issues, too. For some, no widgets work whatsoever, while for others third-party widgets don’t work while pre-loaded ones do. It looks like the temporary fix for this issue is a reboot, but that only fixes the problem for about an hour, so it’s hardly a fix. We’re still keeping an eye on forum posts about the widget bug in the Galaxy S5 since Lollipop and will update this article in case a fix surfaces. Until then, this issue is also on the list that will be fixed by Samsung itself.
These are the most common Galaxy s5 bugs that we’ve come across in forums and support discussions and the fixes that various users tried and found helpful. Remember that these might not work for all of you, as everyone has different usage patterns with their smartphone. If some of these help you out, let us know in the comments below, or if you have different fixes that you’ve tried and they seem to have helped, post them below. Alternatively, if you can’t find your issue here or none of the fixes we’ve proposed work for you, try checking out the XDA Forums Galaxy S5 bugs thread and list your issue, maybe a dev can help.