Android 4.3 update for Galaxy S III causing major issues, might have been put on hold

Well, it looks like Samsung may have skipped properly testing the Android 4.3 update for the Galaxy S III in a bid to get it out there as soon as possible. The update, which started rolling out to unlocked international variants of the S III today and to Vodafone-branded handsets a few days ago, is causing all sorts of issues for users, and as a result Samsung might have pulled the plug and paused its rollout.

The issues the Android 4.3 update has introduced are pretty major, including reduced battery life, app crashes, inconsistent Wi-Fi connections, laggy performance, and even complete lockups of the device on the lockscreen that can only be solved by pulling out and reinserting of the battery. The folks over at Phones Review report that the update was initially available on their UK handset, but after ignoring it and attempting to update the next day, their S III simply said the latest updates were installed, which is a pretty good indication that the update might have been pulled by Samsung, and the Note II update might be put on hold as well, considering how similar it is to the S III in both software and hardware.

From the comments on both our site and our Facebook feed, it seems these issues are affecting more than a few users out there, in which case we hope Samsung is working on fixing things as soon as humanly possible. The wait for Android 4.3 has already been quite a long one, and a few more weeks won’t be too bad if it means users can get a stable experience. In the meantime, do try to refrain from updating your S III at this point, at least not before we can get some more info on the matter.


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3 years 3 months ago

I’ve had my S III since August 2012 and I was very, very happy with it. I don’t want to upgrade my phone and didn’t need to upgrade the OS. I woke up a couple of weeks ago and was ‘pushed’ to install 4.3. No choice as it wasn’t an ‘ask’ it was a ‘do’.

I sat back, let my phone do what it does and voila! It’s turned into a total duff! Two 5 minute phone calls and i’ve smashed 30% of my battery. I used to be able to travel to London and back on a train (an hour both ways) and spend all day up in town and come home with approx. 30% of my battery remaining.

All this while e-mailing, texting, calling, Facebook and the odd game as well. I’m down to 60% before I get to the train station now. What have they done OR not done?

Thoroughly peed off! Can I revert to 4.2.2 without needing degree knowledge in IT? Will this be ‘fixed’ by Samsung? My network provider people (o2) have just shrugged as they can’t help. I wouldn’t have chosen to sabotage my handset. The choice was made for me and now I’m screwed. I need my phone for business and it served it’s purpose. i would have recommended it to everyone.

I have 6+ months left of a 2 year contract so I’m stuck with said phone that was the dog’s bollocks and now is just bollocks!

3 years 4 months ago

So many desperate people.

3 years 4 months ago

I have been having the same issues after flashing the 4.3 android on my S3 (reduced battery life, aggy performance, impossible to listen spotify, free ram was never lower than 200Mb). Then I rooted my S3 (because I wanted to install CM) and installed the super user function… After that, when I re-started the phone everything was running faster. Now I can get up to 400Mb of free ram and spotify is working normally again…
Don’t know what happened with the S3 while rooting but now is working much better. Have this happened to anyone else?

3 years 4 months ago

Now on CM11 with Android 4.4.1… Amazingly fluid!

lenin rojas
3 years 4 months ago

sorry for being late to the liner, but wanted to know if they are still problems in the S3 4.3 yesterday and download that vercion gustria me try, gacias for reading this comment

3 years 5 months ago

I flashed my note 2 using odin 4.1 to 4.3 but i am not getting the network. I am getting a message “not registered to network”. what to do guys plz help.

3 years 5 months ago

This is where Samsung is really lacking. Every update takes ages to deliver and when it is done, it is without proper testing. Android is coming out with latest versions, but unless you hold a Google Nexus, you do not have it on your mobile and it takes ages to get an update.

3 years 5 months ago

Los que hemos actualizado ya que pasa ?????? La pantalla de Bloqueo te tiras la vida para que se encienda y no hay manera . Hay alguna manera de volber a 4.1.2 aunque ya lo intente y no me dejo se quedaba en la pantalla de inicio

3 years 5 months ago

Samsung has been very good in all the previous updates. What is happening now!!!!

A quick Samsung fix and release of 4.3 updates to all customers, may keep customers. otherwise Samsung may start loosing some of them.

3 years 5 months ago

4.2.2 is more stable than 4.3

4.3 are torrible

- fast battary empty

- some apps crush

- screen locks take some times

- slow and not smooth

sorry about my ENGLISH ^_^

3 years 5 months ago

i’ve flashed my phone with Ireland vodafone version and it caused a huge number of problems so i downgraded to stock 4.1.2 but my imei number have been damaged and i cant have mobile networks only emergency calls!!!
but when i get back to 4.3 again it works normal and the imei get back fine and the networks works good??
why did that happened and i just want to get back to 4.1.2
i need help any ideas??
3 years 5 months ago

hi man, same problem, did u get any help on this?

3 years 5 months ago

If you want to go back to stock 4.1.2 you’ll have to flash UK BTU firmware I9300XXEMG4.

3 years 5 months ago

Already tried a full wipe when you get back to 4.1.2?

3 years 5 months ago

sammmobile, I got 4.3 uk version and have problem of battery and lock screen delay. any solution and at what time Samsung going to fix it. because its so irritating for me to manage my phone. specially when some one calls me and screen get black and show its id after 5 to 10 seconds. or should I downgrade to 4.1.2 and what’s its procedure.

3 years 5 months ago

i see that every1 is having the same issue’s and i have downgraded to 4.1.2 but then i couldn’t have mobile networks!!
then i figured out that my imei have been damaged :(
so i get back to 4.3 and the imei is fine and m stuck now on 4.3 and its really bad i dont know if any1 have downgraded back to 4.1.2 and have the same issue??
3 years 5 months ago

hi man, same problem, did u get any help?

3 years 5 months ago

hola yo tengo un s3 i9300 libre y me anime a instalar la rom de Reino unido 4.3 oficial con odin y funciona bastante bien! solo no funciona el efecto luz! wifi y 3g de diez y funciona mas fluido que 4.1.2! saludos !

3 years 5 months ago

la ram funciona bien deshabilitando algunas aplicaciones de samsung y widgets que no se ocupan! 4.3 a diferencia con 4.1.2 se pueden desactivar muchas aplicaciones de samsung que en el anterior no se podian!

3 years 5 months ago

one more reason to never buy a Samsung again.
Now I have an S3 after a S1 and a Samsung tablet. My next phone will be a Google Nexus one, also my next tablet

3 years 5 months ago

UPDATE: – Remove Memory hungry or Network active Apps to fix

My phone got progressively worse. To the point where incoming calls were not being notified on the phone and would only be seen as missed calls after waking the phone up.

As this is a memory management issue, as a last ditch effort to get my phone working in its most basic and fundamental use case, I removed Facebook, Twitter and eBAY Apps. This effectively increased my phones free memory (RAM) from about 120MB (Ave) to 300MB (Ave) and the the phone is happy doing the right things and behaving itself.

The kswapd0 memory/swap manager is now hardly active (It was using about 25% of CPU = 1 core @ 100%, but now is less than about 5%)

Phone now wakes up immediately, battery life is good, no missed calls. (My Facebook friends wont miss me :-) )

When Samsung fix this, I will apply the patch and reinstall the Apps and see what happens then.

3 years 5 months ago

Members –

My suggestion above about reducing the memory footprint works most of the time but I was still missing calls and could not wake my phone from time to time.

I also found that if I force close all Recent Apps and Clear Memory (Long Press of home button gets you there) before putting my phone to sleep after using the phone I now get over 20 hours of use and the phone is very (I mean very) fast.

3 years 5 months ago

Thanks for the tip. This also worked for me. Removed all social apps(Facebook, Twitter etc.), flashed to 4.3 and phone is running pretty smooth.

3 years 5 months ago

Why my comment left on 15 November 2013 at 11:09 is awaiting moderation since now??? Sammobile, can you reply to my request? Thanks!

3 years 5 months ago

The problems I’ve noticed so far :

- Random app crashes (Google Now, Play Music – apps that I never use)
- Lag when pressing on/off or home button in lock-screen
- Battery drainage
- WIFI sometimes slow, some times fast
- Screen doesn’t turn on when I remove the phone from my ear
- Huge RAM usage (4.1.2 needed 540MB, 4.3 needs 650MB+)

The interface does work pretty fluently though. Maybe a bit better than 4.1.2. However, the rest of the functionally is pretty horrible. Downgrading to 4.1.2 this afternoon

p.s. haven’t found a working root for 4.3 as well, so I’m stuck with bloatware like Chrome, Play Music, Play Video and crap like that which can’t be removed because it is installed as a system-app (WHY ???)

3 years 5 months ago

Here no problems for now and use the 4.3 version now 1 week. Only thing I have is the late responce if I want to unlock… If I not use the phone for a while and I tab on a button the phone reacts late but thats the only problem I have for now… I have NO battery drain or NO apps that crached or annything else.. Firmware works fine (only unlock reaction problem) I have the Czech Republic version on my phone…

3 years 5 months ago

Got email from Samsung after I complained. Clearly blaming Google for the mess! Read on….

“Thank you for contacting Samsung Customer Support.

I was sorry to read that you are experiencing issues with your Galaxy SIII after the last software update and I appreciate your frustration on this occasion.

Please be advised that we are aware if the issue and Google is working on the resolution at present. I would kindly ask you for your patience on this occasion and as soon as Google confirms that the fix was prepared we will make sure that all users are immediately informed.

As we are currently investigating the reported issues with Galaxy S3 4.3 Jelly Bean update, the upgrading service has been temporarily suspended. We are committed to providing customers with the best possible mobile experience, and will ensure to resume the upgrading service at the earliest possibility.

One more time please accept our deepest apologies on this occasion.

If there is anything else we can help with, please let us know.”

3 years 5 months ago

The problem also lies with those of us who have already upgraded and are unable to revert back to 4.2, as then upgrade has cause the modem to stop working when reverting back. So now we sit with a problem phone and wait!
Cynogenmod 4.3 works wonder, ive heard.

3 years 5 months ago

this is why i’m give up on samsung device …8/10 of my friend change their phone… :(

3 years 5 months ago

Is the culprit possibly memory management ??

If have installed the BTU upgrade and am suffering somewhat poor performance and excessive battery drain.

Using the “OS Monitor” App I can see that process kswapd0 is using about almost 100% CPU on one of the 4 cores. This process is tasked with freeing up RAM by swapping memory resident processes to the slower FLASH based internal SD Card swap partition.

On my S3 I have 832MB of usable RAM (Out of my 1GB), and typically about 700MB of this is used. I suspect that because of the larger (less efficient) memory footprint of 4.3, the kswapd0 process is working harder to free memory to keep the phone running. This is using more CPU (increasing battery consumption), and slowing the phone down. (High CPU plus a requirement to swap back into RAM processes that are sleeping and been swapped out to the SDCard) – If this is the root cause problem, then I am sure Samsung can tweak the configuration to improve things.

Interestingly the KitKat 4.4 kernel has been optimised and made more efficient on phones with less memory. (Apparently KitKat can work in 512MB) . So the solution here may be for Samsung to retire 4.3 and get Kit Kat 4.4 out to S3 users quickly.

3 years 5 months ago

Perhaps they only tested on 2GB RAM variant?

3 years 5 months ago

I think the GT-I9300 only ever had 1GB RAM. It was the LTE Version (GT-I9305) that came with 2GB RAM.

3 years 5 months ago

I am starting to get sick of Samsung. I was not in favor of own an Iphone but even they update their previous smartphones. If they don’t update my freaking SIII soon I will consider to switch to HTC or even Nokia

3 years 5 months ago

i was really exiting when i know that it was rolling out because i was waiting from October and know you just say will be put on hold easily after all this waiting and you say that???i hope to fix it soon and when it fixed release all countries ROM PLEASE

3 years 5 months ago

I am in kuwait and I install irish vodafon 4.3 manually so far I got only battery drain problem and lock screen late wakeup late means 3 sec other than all is well … my quastion is if in future samsung fixes thes bugs then should I get that ota or not bec I update manually and its not belongs to my country pls any one help I m worried for that pls reply

3 years 5 months ago

You can not get that ota update. You should make again manually with odin.
My advice to you, wait for Kuwait version and make odin update. After this, you can get ota update again.

3 years 5 months ago

I want to install the Chinese rom install? whom and not bring the same faults than the other?