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A little bit of help would be highly appreciated.

A few days ago, my Samsung Galaxy S3 started freezing randomly. I had to remove the battery in order to restart it. Yesterday the problem got worse: whenever I try to turn the phone on, it freezes in the first splash screen (the “Samsung Galaxy SIII GT-I9300” screen). When I push the power button for a few seconds in order to turn it off, it goes off but then turns on by itself immediately after and freezes again in the first screen. I have to remove the battery in order to turn it off.

When I try to charge the phone with the mains charger or with the USB cable connected to my PC, a gray battery icon with a static circle inside appears and the screen doesn’t change. After several minutes, the phone gets warm, but there’s no evidence that the battery is charging (the icon of the gray battery with a static circle inside is still there).

I took my wife’s S3 battery (50% charged), put into my S3, pushed the power button and the phone froze at the same point (“Galaxy SIII” screen). I’ve also tested my battery on my wife’s S3: it charged normally and her phone worked flawlessly. I guess this means it’s not a battery issue.

I’ve already tried to clear the cache partition or even factory reset my phone (removed the battery for a few seconds, put it back, then pushed Volume Up + Home + Power for a while), but it didn’t work either (the Android System Recovery screen never appeared).

The phone is rooted, but I’ve never installed any custom ROM.

I’ve read many android forums and tried a few workarounds, but nothing seemed to work.

Any thoughts or suggestions?

  • I don't know Samsung devices well enough, but AFAIR they also offer a "download mode". As you obvioulsy cannot even reach "recovery mode", maybe there's a chance to get there and see whether the device becomes visible to adb devices. If so, there might be a chance to "wipe" it from there, or using some of the Samsung-specific tools like Odin or Heimdall. – Izzy Sep 15 '13 at 11:19
  • Thanks for your help, but I have given up trying to soft unbrick my phone. I’ve tried to enter recovery mode, to no avail. However, I can get into download mode and I've already tried many unbricking procedures using ODIN, but none of them have worked. I'm deciding whether I'll replace the main motherboard or not. I'll keep up posting. – Troubleshooter76 Sep 22 '13 at 4:44
  • Giving it to service might also be a variant, at least if it's still under warranty. I know it's rooted, which voids that in most countries; but at least here in EU they make a difference (EU law says rooting doesn't void "implied warranty", which any manufacturer must ensure). – Izzy Sep 22 '13 at 11:54
  • If you ever enabled "USB Debugging" in the Developer options, you can look at the ADB logs and see what's going on with your phone using a USB cable and the adb logcat. My hunch is that of Alex's i.e. "sudden death". It happened to my phone some years ago. – Mohammad Haseeb Jun 7 '16 at 1:09
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Sounds like it might be the "sudden death syndrome" problem. If so, Samsung should fix/replace your phone for you (even if you've rooted it):

http://androidcommunity.com/samsung-galaxy-s-iii-suffering-from-sudden-death-syndrome-20121221/

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It could be a problem with a launcher such as Nova or Apex or it could be a problem with a 3rd party application. Try starting in safe mode and see if it is that :)

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My S3 was stuck at the splash screen and couldn't go into recovery mode, and rebooted constantly when I plugged in the USB. So not quite like yours but similar enough that people might see my answer here.

My battery charge was at 8% when the phone quit (I tried to delete some corrupted movie files). I fixed it by turning it on till it was at the splash screen, then plugging it in and leaving it for about ten minutes. Eventually I heard the sweet sound of it continuing to boot up.

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Dont worry, your phone is not officialy dead. It's in bootloop because of some corrupted partition or filesystem. Only one way out. You need to get into Download mode and flash some custom or stock rom using ODIN tool with full wipe. make sure you have 100% charged your battery , before doing such things. You can easily find ODIN and ROMs for your model. If you dont know how to proceed, contact some friends or colleagues of your who had done such things earlier. You can also do this, just you need to follow the steps. Your best resource will be XDA forums.

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