Samsung Galaxy S5 Active Forum

Why do Samsung phone only last a year or so???

Hey guys, I am on my 4th Samsung, always thinking that maybe I had a buggy phone, but now I think it is just Samsung. I now have an S5 Active and once again it died at about one year. Why is this?

Do they engineer them to die quickly so you buy another?




#1 Bognerman, Apr 15, 2018
I still carry around a 5 year old Galaxy Note 2 with me everywhere I go... not had any problems with it at all.
#2 psionandy, Apr 15, 2018
they seem to work 3-5 years for me.
#3 Skittles, Apr 15, 2018
If you're going through a lot of phones so often, it doesn't sound like it's a matter of some kind of conspiracy of planned obsolescence but more like you're using your phones in a pretty dismissive way, either physically or with little regard to usage.
Just as an anecdotal example, I still have a Galaxy S3 (2012) that was at one time my primary phone and still use daily as a secondary (at home as a media player and for WiFi Calling). But even ignoring that, most people get a lot more usage out of their phones than a year. Suggest you take a step back and consider how you treat yours.
#4 svim, Apr 15, 2018
I think it largely depends on how you're using your phone, constantly charging from 0 to 100% will of course degrade the battery. I'm still using Samsung Galaxy Young my dad gave to me in 2013, still going strong.

I can't help but feel really jealous reading some of the post on this forum, people buying new phones every year. Being broke is a disease I swear!
#5 Ninjabeekeeper, Apr 15, 2018
My Samsung Galaxy Note7 phone only lasted 3 weeks. Although on average I've changed phones once a year, currently have a Huawei Mate10. The last two Oppos i had I've sold.
#6 mikedt, Apr 15, 2018 Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
Thanks guys. I have multiple new batteries and the result is the same. They don't charge nor hold a charge. Very weird. I talked to a Samsung tech who did say they engineer them to last at most 2 years, but that seems a bit too extreme.

This recent S5 Active is only 10 months old and it needs replacing....yet again. I can't afford to always buy phones. I am looking at cheap phones now like the Motorola 5 or whatever it is called to try and dave money each year.

I plug it in and the only way it charges is if I turn the power off. And then it drains in about an hour or so regardless of what I do. I use my phone minimally too. Ibhave a good case and take care of it but I have yet to get more than a year out of one. I don't want ro spend for an apple because I don't like apple, nor the cost.
#7 Bognerman, Apr 15, 2018
I could afford to buy a new phone every few months, but prefer to keep them for as long as they are useful (so e.g. my last one lasted 4.5 years, and I might still play with it when I have some spare time). I take the same attitude with pretty much anything I buy, which I guess makes me a traitor to Western consumer capitalism :p.

It does mean that when I do feel it's time to change I choose the replacement quite carefully.

For the record, my son and one of my brothers' families have been using various Samsung phones, from flagships to budget models, for many years without any untoward failures. And my Note tablet is now 4 years old and still going fine. So I don't think they have any inherent reliability or longevity problem.
#8 Hadron, Apr 15, 2018
Would you guys suggest the Note instead of the Gallaxy?

What could I be doing regarding the charging that could kill the battery? I usually keep the phone always plugged in since it never holds a charge long so when at home, in the office or driving, I leave it plugged in. I always take it to 100% since it dies so fast.
#9 Bognerman, Apr 15, 2018
OK so it's not so much your having to replace your phones so often but more specifically it's just a battery life issue. Just some possible suggestions.
-- Buy an external battery pack that will extend your daily phone usage. Could be a hassle to have to keep it with you whenever you're not home but something to consider.
-- Instead of constantly replacing your phone, you could opt to just buy one with a user-replaceable battery -- a new battery is generally a lot cheaper than a new phone. Unfortunately the trend most manufacturers have taken (especially for higher end and flagship models) is to avoid user-replaceable batteries so finding phones that do tend to limit your choices, but there still a number of them available. Take a look at a LG V20, a LG V5, or a Moto E4 as examples.
-- If you're frequently running your battery down to single digits, don't do that. This drastically reduces the overall life of a smartphone battery. Every so often isn't an issue but repeatedly doing this is a noted problem. Also, leaving your phone on its charger after it's fully charged isn't helping either. Li-ion batteries should never be over-charged and there's limiting circuitry that prevents them from that, but at the same time by leaving your phone plugged in it's just going through an endless cycle where once it's fully charged the power transfer is halted, then when the eventually battery drains a bit, the charging process begins again, and the cycle just repeats, and repeats. That's just not optimal for the battery itself, unplug it when it's fully charged. If you really, really want to optimize the charging process you should stop it when the battery is approaching the 80-90% level. There's a lot of good info on 'How to Prolong Battery Life' here:
... and don't forget that at some point while you do want to extend your phone's battery life, at the same time you need to live your life so don't get fixated on every little thing so it eventually is controlling you.
#10 svim, Apr 15, 2018
To be fair though, I cannot be bothered with "unplug once it's fully charged" or "only charge to 80%" - I just plug in overnight and unplug in the morning, same as almost everyone else I know. And I've never had a battery that didn't last at least 3 years when used that way (my last phone, with a non-removable battery, would still reliably give me 3 hours screen on time in a day of light usage after 4.5 years, which even if it was about half of what it was when new still sounds better than the OP is getting after 1 year). So my guess is that a problem that drastic isn't a matter of leaving it on charge but one of the other issues.

Do you usually keep it plugged in right from when you get it, or only when the lifetime becomes bad? Because heat is a battery's worst enemy, so using it heavily while charging could shorten the battery's lifetime. If you like to plug in while doing stuff like gaming sessions or GPS navigation that might be part of the problem. And a high screen brightness will add to the heat generated as well.

If it was just one phone I'd wonder whether it was a defect: if the phone ran hot due to a manufacturing fault that would also cause the battery to run down fast (both because running hot would mean using more energy, and because heat degrades battery performance). But with a consistent pattern it must be something about usage.
#11 Hadron, Apr 15, 2018
Whenever I bought a new phone, I followed the charging protocol. But then within months, the phone wouldn't charge well,nor remain charged so I would once again have to almost always have it charging. Right now I walk around with a power station portable charger to maintain power.

My phone has a removable battery but after a while, even new batteries don't work. It must be the phone. Iat buy one more battery and see what happens. Been trying to charge my phone all day and it hasn't gone above 10%.

I only kept it plugged in all day after it started behaving badly. Otherwise, I always plugged it in at night and unplugged when I woke up and it was always 100% in the morning and lasted most of the day. After a few months I would only get an hour or so of usage and then would have to keep plugging it in all the time.
#12 Bognerman, Apr 15, 2018 Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
My wife's note 2 lasted for five years. My nexus 6 lasted three years. My father n law had an LG phone that lasted close to eight years. My aunt's iPhone lasted seven.
I did prepaid for a number of years every two to three months I was getting a replacement device.
My main concern now when it comes to cellphones is it's dependable. I don't care about what version of Android its running , the features all I want is a dependable phone for calls, texting and checking emails.
#13 joe71, Apr 15, 2018
For the first time ever I am seriously considering getting myself an iPhone - simply because Apple is incredible with their support and support their devices for like several years with updates.

They will support for many many years something I believe Android seems to have never really ever remotely cared about.

Security is becoming more and more important in my life but even blackberry has not gone this way with it's android phones for security with updates for a couple of years only 2 if you are lucky. Even the Priv has now been dropped with update support and I don't think its even 2 years old :/

I hate having something that has security flaws it bugs me (pun intended) very badly. One thing I must seriously commend Apple on is how incredible their support is.

Seriously it is amazing - none of the other manufacturers do this.

And in my industry with such sensitive data I can't have security problems / breaches.

If a major android manufacturer decided to support their model for many years I would also seriously consider it.

but given all of their history I beg to differ.
#14 Member243850, Apr 15, 2018
Well Apple has an incentive($$$) to keep iOS updates going, so they can slow the older iPhones down and users can buy new faster ones.

As I am somewhat concerned about security myself, I will NOT be using any iOS devices here in China.

Google: do no evil
Apple: do evil

BTW I will NOT be storing any of my sensitive data in Apple iCloud either:

#15 mikedt, Apr 15, 2018 Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
Google dropped the "don't be evil" mission statement some years ago. On the other hand they are promising 3 years of updates (OS and security) for the current Pixel devices.

Essential have promised 3 years of security updates, but as they are only available in North America that is less relevant.
#16 Hadron, Apr 16, 2018
Because samsung needs morons to buy phones every month to support their hookers and blow habits. There, i said it.

Deny it all you want, but there is no valid excuse why Samsung intentionally designs their phones to cost $1200 and have a sealed battery that can't even last an hour in pokemon go, let alone actually being usable in a full day of work anymore. Or how they've gone out of their way to betray and scare off the very tinkerers and modders that recommended and kept their phones popular enough to become the relative juggernaut that they are now.

And because Apple has been able to get away with it in the name of *fashion*, rich and stupid assholes buy them by the pallet load and manufacturers would rather make hyper disposable phones at four digit markups. Leaving anyone that actually has to earn a living or cares about longevity screwed over.
#17 codezer0, Apr 16, 2018
I don't entirely agree with you on the fashion being the only reason why some of us would be attracted to an iPhone - because for some of us I want the (security updates) support that comes with it for many many years.

You do however make some extremely valid points though!

What is scary is how these manufacturers believe it is okay to just pump things out in the millions and not even bother to support them with software for at least a couple maybe a few years.

If I was a phone manufacturer I would very quickly make an extremely easy to softmod phone - I can see a massive potential market (totally untapped!) that if you just made it friendly to modifiers and gave free downloadable software to easily return back to stock OS I think it would easily sell in the millions!

One thing I disagree with though are the modifiers over clocking the CPU of the phones and other stuff where the CPU was never designed to go to such extremes. But all you do is make the CPU hardware locked and impossible to overclock or just choose a specific CPU that is not overclockable so it is not hard at all to do I don't believe.

But I think its pretty easy to make a product that is extremely customizable and can be very easily returned to factory OS if you provide an easy solution.

Heck maybe if you want to why not let the community develop for it if they prefer?

I would maybe even go with an Intel based CPU to allow anybody to install whatever they want to on it - x86 architecture has almost unlimited potential to install pretty much almost anything you want!

I think its terrible how they lick everything down I have to agree with you on that.

But these days I have moved further and further away from the IT world and more and more into engineering - I don't have time to understand how it works any more it must just work and do what I need it to do.

For some of us a phone that is up to do date on security patches is absolutely freaking awesome!

This is why I am thinking about the new iPhone (NOT the iPhone X - that bezel that sticks over the screen just looks like a 2year old designed it I will be going with the previous generation because the design is a horrible turn off for me! It looks freaking hideous!)

I don't know what the **** Apple was smoking when they thought the iPhone X looked "awesome" ... good lord it is TERRIBLE.

I mean just look at this thing... if I am going to spend a lot of money on something I at least want it to look reasonably good.... I don't care too much about fashion I just want security updates but seeing as how bad the design is I don't want it.

Just look at this horrible ****ing thing.... wtf were they thinking!?

I hate that notch. It is infuriating.

I only want Apple though because of the long support and much longer life span not because of fashion.

If Down syndrome is the new fashion or adding notches in the middle of a screen (Down syndrome) is "fashion" then count me out.

I just want my security updates to keep my bacon happily secure thanks :)
#18 Member243850, Apr 16, 2018
I was able to endure with my note 3 in part because being able to replace the battery (even now in 2018 i could buy a *new* zerolemon 10k mAh extended battery), and a recent surge of finally current OS ROMs for it (mine is an sm-n900 exynos model). I first tried to settle with a moto x pure because of the phones on the market at the time, it was the only thing with universal bands support, and retained the ability to install an sd card and the like. Rooting and running a custom Rom were dead easy too. However, all my problems began and ended with the battery being so goddamned horrible and nonreplaceable. By the time i could even afford to think of looking up how to replace the battery myself, lenovo of all people basically banned everyone from being able to sell parts for the phone. So what used to be $15 for an official replacement battery, became $50(and up!) for the explosive chinese knockoff. Plus the cost of a new back with glue, and additional tools.

I recently at least had enough money to try and pick up an lg g4. I went with the us991 model (unlocked), because again, i wanted to be able to not lose the sunk cost of buying the thing if i suddenly needed to switch carriers. I had reasonably assumed that it was as well supported and moddable as the v10 and v20. Boy, was i wrong. I can't even successfully backup its nand, let alone start the process of rooting its system image to flash back to the phone. And for it claiming to have the oem unlock feature, it's just as useless here. Meaning I'm bombarded with ads effing everywhere. Especially in the irksome YouTube app. To me, it makes the phone nearly unusable, since ads have exceeded malware as the vector in where systems are most frequently compromised. Nevermind the aggravation when they directly affect battery life and being able to get anything done. And of course, right now i can't even think of trying to save up to get something to replace it.

Apple especially now, is a terrible choice to go with. Especialky in light that they just flat out admitted that they intentionally gimp anything that isn't a current model. Meaning as soon as it's deemed "old", the next firmware will stunt kt to 10% of its possible performance. Nevermind that iPhones have never had any meaningful battery life. Even if i were in the market for an iPhone, the only model i could see myself be happy with is an unlocked 6s plus. Even then i would need to basically keep it attached to an extra battery or outlet like all the time, because those things just don't last.
#19 codezer0, Apr 16, 2018
Yeah thats a very good point actually :/

I wonder if it will even be usable in a few years time because they have installed so much choke-ware to throttle down performance :/

Man if somebody just came in with an extremely competitive device that lasted for a few years or maybe a little bit more like maybe 5 and had all the replaceable battery parts like they used to and had a relatively easy to remove internal SD and maybe even some candle RAM they could dominate the market!

Especially in these economic turbulent / troubled times you could very easily steal an entire audience if you just did things right :)

I would make a phone that would be extremely easy to modify, replaceable battery, replaceable internal SD card, also maybe even upgradable ram too if I can add it hopefully.

Also why not give it a fully functional bios that can easily install anything the user would want to install on it!

Just imagine!

I could seriously become the next tycoon if I wanted to!

How awesome would it be if your phone could run Windows 10 on it because it was running on an Intel Atom with a fully functioning OS on it?

Then nobody could complain about it running out of longevity use and could be very future proof.

If I get enough cash I see insane potential in something like this.

Obviously just prevent overclocking because that will destroy the phone / tablet pc and that is not fair to the manufacturer and also don't allow people to modify the BIOS - just give them all the functionality they need already straight out the box.

No modding required - just boot into the BIOS and install whatever you please! :)

In fact you most probably won't even need to bother to have a software team to update it because people will prefer to do their own thing :)

I think it would sell extremely well!

Just keep it nice and open.

Maybe even have a 2nd safety BIOS just incase the first one fails for a true unbrickable phone / tablet!

I think they modding community would go bonkers and love it! :D

I think that would be freaking awesome!
#20 Member243850, Apr 16, 2018
Hmmm I wonder if this is just a lie or story to cover their evil hides... so they can blame it on the battery... hmmmmmm.... I wonder...

Hmmm I wonder sometimes whats really going on .... Apple wants to blame batteries now for their iphones slowing down...

#21 Member243850, Apr 16, 2018
To be perfectly fair, microsoft did try. My wife won't get rid of the lumia 550 i gifted her. $150 new, factory unlocked, and has been getting a steady stream of updates. And specs wise was better than most android phones at up to a $300~400 usd price bracket. I was also seriously considering the 950 xl because it was stupid powerful and flexible. I just couldn't come up with the money.

And then because even with updated tools, nobody would even try to make apps for it; forcing Microsoft to check out of the phone market for a second time.

Samsung made tizen for no other reason than to try and negotiate a better deal with Google. The phone hardware and software were unmitigated-ly horrible.

Google tries to talk about how open Android is, but is just as guilty about making the most criminally over-locked phones. They won't even acknowledge external storage of any kind. And go out lf their way to ape the iPhone, for all the wrong reasons.

You know what I'd want in a phone?
  • No carrier bloat
  • Root and unlocked bootloader, so custom roms can exist after the manufacturer is "done" supporting it
  • Headphones jack (can't believe i even have to bring this up, that's how offended i am with so-called modern* phones)
  • If not a user replaceable radio chip, then outfit it to support all the data/voice bands. It makes too much sense not to do this; then you only have to worry about making a single model of phone that works with every carrier on the planet.
  • User replaceable battery with a design to allow extended and upgraded battery sizes.
  • External storage, be it sd slot or whatever might come to replace it eventually
Optionally, i would not mind if there were options like
  • Physical keyboard
  • Gamepad or controller grips so actual gaming could occur on the thing
As it is, the situation with phones is even worse than when intel started suing and revoking licenses for third party motherboard chipsets for their cpu's; when amd bought ati, it basically also scared off third party chipsets for their platforms too. Before that, there was real differentiation that could lead to unique or covetable features. Now basically 99% of boards of the same basic chipset are nearly identical on the surface, needing an effing PhD to even find one doing things better for the money.

With phones now, they're going out of their way to take away perfectly good features and charging us more for the phone, *and* the accessories to restore functionality that should have always remained. For even worse battery that clearly won't last long enough to even fulfill the average payment plan for said phones.
#22 codezer0, Apr 16, 2018
Hahaha, it's okay to be jealous, human nature. :)
Were you expecting to become a millionaire by keeping bees? lol
Being broke sucks, we've all been there except for those born with a silver spoon in their mouth. You need to understand that your current situation is not permanent.

If you need help with money, message me or join us degenerates at AlphasCCards subreddit lmao
My only advice for you is to buy from them once and then stop. There's no point in ordering from them over and over again, it's actually how people get caught.

@OP, Stop abusing your phone with reckless abandon, as you can clearly see on this thread, people use their Samsung phones for more than 3 years with no issues. I mean, look at that beekeeper that's even using a Galaxy Young for 5 years now for crying out loud, teehee :D
#23 Jazminest, Apr 16, 2018