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sorry if the question is a bit off-topic but any help would be much appreciated.

I have a Samsung S4 [I9505] and I was looking for a good protective case for it. initially I was going for a Slim TPU Gel case but it didn't feel like it would give much protection from bumps etc.

I was thinking of buying a leather case with a magnetic closure but after reading a bit online, people are saying the magnetic flap which closes the case can damage the AMOLED screen, also the magnet that sits on the screen side. So do you think it could be risky to use this case? Would it damage my phone or screen in any way?

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There are two things to consider:

  1. Temporary interference with the device operation. Magnets can and do affect the device in various ways. This includes messing with the digitizer, creating dead spots and distortion, and potentially affecting sensors such as the magnetometer. These effects are temporary, but in severe cases could make the device hard to use, or result in misinformation from apps dependent on affected sensor(s).
  2. Permanent damage. There seems to be a lot of controversy around this, but I would still recommend caution unless you know for sure that the specific components in your phone when combined with specific magnet strength and location with respect to the screen, are known to be OK together. As I understand it, there are certain AMOLED screens in older devices that are susceptible, but others that are not. In a large production run device like yours, the OEM may have used different suppliers over time, so it might be difficult to find out before hand if your particular device is susceptible. The specific case you get also matters. If you get a cheapo one from eBay and it damages your screen, you'll have little recourse with the case supplier or Samsung.

If you really need/want a magnetic closure, I would see if you can find one from a reputable manufacturer that has made the case specifically for your device.

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I bought a magnetic flip case for my phone, and two major things happened:

1) after a brief period of working beautifully, the phone became more electronegative in some way, and I had to brush off any metallic objects such as pen caps or cetain keys whenever removing it from my backpack; and

2) at this juncture, the GPS ceased to be able to tell where the phone was. For a while, it still functioned (but only if the magnetic case was on the phone.) At this point, the phone was magnetic enough to cling quite firmly to the outside of my car, so I got rid of the case, and that's where we are with it. Recommended for anyone longing for a way to undermine any remote snooping on the cheap. Otherwise, no.

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One experience-based data point: my boss has an S4 Mini in a magnetic closure case (with the small data window that depends on the phone detecting when the case is open or closed to display a compact clock when closed), and has had it for at least a couple years. He uses the phone a lot, so I'm pretty sure I'd have heard if there was a problem.

No way to be certain that goes for all S4 family phones, but at least some are okay.

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I have a Samsung galaxy android phone that was originally housed in a mechanically latched case. The latch broke and I bought a magnetic latched case. The phone did not work correctly, as if there was random noise generator turning on and off the APS and slowing down/delaying APS.

I tried to get rid of what I thought were corrupted APS, but achieved no change. Then after awhile and reading articles pro and con about the effects of a magnetic latched case I left the phone out of the magnetically latched cases.

Walla, the phone went back to working correctly after restarting. So if you are having these problems dispose of the magnetic latched case and see what happens?

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I have a Samsung Galaxy S6 with a Shieldon leather case (an excellent case in all other ways) that has a magnetic closure. From the phone sensors readings, when the phone is removed from the case the magnetic field drops from 250 µT to 40 µT. The compass is constantly wrong, as it indicates the North always towards the left side of the phone, although compass calibration is reported as "very good". Recalibrating the compass or removing the phone from the case doesn't have any effect.

EDIT: I manage to fix the problem by removing the phone from the case and recalibrating it. Related question: Is it possible to reset the compass calibration to factory settings?

Also, I remember that the magnetic case of the i-mate K-Jam (a PocketPC phone sold during the 2000s) caused the screen orientation to "stick" for a few seconds.

Apart from this, I've never experienced or heard about any ill-effect of the magnets to the screen. However, it causes the issues above reported, so for what concerns me my next case isn't going to have any magnets.

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