Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus are undoubtedly the most beautiful Android phones you can get your hands on. But the phones have suffered from many technical issues. Though the Galaxy S8 problems aren’t as big as the Note 7’s battery explosions, every single one of them is drawing scrutiny due to the Note 7 debacle. The latest issue haunting the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus owners is the audio cut-off.
Some Galaxy S8 users have found a quick fix
Many Galaxy S8 owners have complained on Samsung’s community forums that audio was unexpectedly cutting out on their phones while playing music, streaming online videos, and playing games. Some users in the community forum suggested that it was a hardware problem rather than a software one. It means a software update wouldn’t be able to fix it.
A few members of the XDA Developers forum also faced the same problem with their Galaxy S8 or S8 Plus units. According to Phone Arena, many users were able to fix the problem by pressing hard two inches above the speakers. It turned the audio back on. Surprisingly, repeating the same process turned the audio off again, indicating that a loose wiring inside the phone could be causing the problem.
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Samsung told the affected users that it was a software issue, though it didn’t mention when or whether it intends to push out a software update to fix it. The Korean company has declined to offer replacement units to affect users. Some customers reported that doing a factory reset or rebooting the smartphone somehow fixed the problem.
The audio may also temporarily suffer if you dunk the phone in water. Though the Galaxy S8 comes with an IP68 waterproof rating, you are likely to experience a cracking sound or sound distortion when audio playback resumes after you pull it out of the water. In such cases, you need to dry off the phone and make sure that you don’t use the speaker for about an hour. Once the moisture dries out, the speakers will go back to normal.
Other problems Galaxy S8 users have experienced
The audio cut-off is not the only problem the Galaxy S8 owners have experienced. An issue with the Device Quality Agent caused a built-in software designed to track the Wi-Fi connection usage across all sub-components of the device, to crash frequently for North American users. Initially, users had to close the app or disconnect from Wi-Fi. Fortunately, Samsung has pushed out a security update fixing the problem.
Another much-publicized issue was the reddish tint on display. It was reportedly caused by the color balance of the OLED screens. Samsung used the Deep Red technology to strengthen the red to cancel out a strong green. The Korean company has since rolled out a software update, giving users greater control over the display color settings.
After the Galaxy Note 7 disaster, Samsung has changed the way it reacts to technical issues. It has been openly acknowledging the flaws, and letting people know what steps it is taking to fix them. A prompt and open response to customer complaints could go a long way in regaining the faith of consumers. In fact, the record-breaking sales of the Galaxy S8 suggest that customers have already forgiven Samsung for the Note 7 fiasco.
Galaxy S8 is the most fragile smartphone ever
Yes, the Galaxy S8 has a gorgeous Infinity display that would make you fall in love with the phone. The side bezels have disappeared, and there are little top and bottom bezels. But the same display makes the Galaxy S8 the most fragile smartphone ever. Electronics insurance company SquareTrade put the S8 and S8 Plus through its breakability test. SquareTrade said the S8 was the first phone ever that “cracked on the first drop on all sides.”
SquareTrade’s durability test included dropping the phone from different sides onto a sidewalk from six feet. The device shattered in just one face-down drop. The results were similar when they dropped it on the sides and backs. The devices are made almost entirely of glass, which makes them even more vulnerable. Describing the new phones as “medium-high risk,” SquareTrade gave the Galaxy S8 a breakability score of 76/100 and S8 Plus a score of 77/100.
As Motherboard points out, a good thing about the Galaxy S8 screen is that its replacements are cheaper than the Galaxy S7 display at the time of release. The prices of replacement screens are expected to come down further in the coming months. The Galaxy S8 screens cost about $200 in China, which is $50-$100 lower than the cost of Galaxy S7 screens last year.
Of course, the reports of the Galaxy S8’s fragility are music to the ears of third-party repair shops. One repair shop owner told Motherboard that the device was “definitely going to break, no question about that.” They are preparing accordingly. If you are not careful with your brand-new Galaxy S8 or S8 Plus, you may have to shell out upward of $200 to repair the display just days or weeks after purchase.