(Updated: Likely a non-issue) Samsung Vibrant Experiencing Reception Issues Similar To iPhone 4?

Update: After speaking with a  number of Vibrant owners, none of whom can replicate this issue we’re chalking this up either to gripping the handset so tightly its smothering or simply a fluke. Enjoy your phone and don’t worry about the iPhone 4 drama.

After today’s official launch of the Samsung Vibrant, we’ve been receiving a good amount of complaints from Vibrant owners regarding reception degradation. Vibrant owners seem to be experiencing issues similar to the iPhone 4’s infamous “Death Grip”. As demonstrated in the video above, tightly gripping the handset results in signal loss and often negatively affects data speeds. We’re not sure if this is a hardware or software related issue, but we’re hoping it’s the latter. Any Vibrant owners out there experiencing this issue? Let us know in the comments!


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  • Annie

    Hello…I’m having a problem with the “messages” icon. Sometimes, I’ll press it and the last page I was on before will pop up. Ie, if I was on the internet beforehand, and I go to the home screen and press “messages”, the internet will pop up. It’s done this three times. But when I restart the phone, the problem goes away.

    And now my internet isn’t working. What the eff… still my fav phone though….

  • Erica

    Just got the Vibrant today and the phone went from wonderful to a pain in 3 hrs. The signal keeps dropping and I haven’t been able to go online or download from the market. Called Tech Support and still nothing! This happens whether I hold the phone or sit it on the table. So I’m not sure its a “death grip” issue. I know one thing for sure. These phones are too expensive to have simple flaws like this.

  • Thomas

    I’ve had the Vibrant since shortly after it came out. The reception on this phone has been TERRIBLE for me. 3G can almost never stay connected. I had the MyTouch 3G slide and that phone had great reception, no problems. This Vibrant jumps from 2G to very weak 3G all the time, especially when my hand is near the left side of the phone. Doesn’t have to actually touch the phone just has to be near it. It will go from full 3g when its sitting by itself on a desk, to 0 3G bars then jumps on 2G when my hand is near it.

    Is this just a fluke where I got a bad or messed up phone? Or is this happening to everyone else with a Vibrant?

    • Jacob

      This same issue is happening to me! it is really dissappointing, seeing that we already live in a rural area without much coverage. Really don’t want to return the phone but i may have to. :/

  • Nathaniel

    Just got the vibrant about 2 days ago and immediatly noticed the drop in reception, I have also lost the 3g connectivity, nothing a quick restart didn’t fix. I have compared to other devices running tmobile such as an unlocked iphone 3g running tmobile services and the service on the other device stays at full bars, I am also unable to send text messages from my job due to signal drops. I was really looking forward to this phone and would hate to have to take it back.

  • Raven

    Im having a lot of issues with the signal on this phone. Dropped calls, calls not going through, not able to go online, slow download speeds. I think am going to return and cancel line. Cost Too much to have so many problems.

  • http://n/a Dennis Emmm

    I’ve had my Vibrant up and running since last weekend. I have had my phone in a silicone case with a screen protector applied since the minute I broke it out of the box. I’ve had no significant issue when compared to my last two handsets, a myTouch Slide and a G1. I’ve held it by the sides and the back as I would any handset with thumb and index finger resting on the volume rocker and the On/Off switch.

  • albrealestate

    signal poor, lost avatar, reloads contacts everytime it sync with facebook so I end up with 4,000 of the sme people. Does not update my synched email let alone refresh my inbox. No flash on camera is very sucky….so much more i think its going back for sure.

  • Noelle

    My vibrant was great for uh a few days but now its driving me crazy! doesn’t sound like all u guys tho, cuz my problem is— everything on it is lagging so bad, its like.. every single thing i do i have to wait and wait and wait. press and wait. press again.. wait.. so navigating through simple things takes minutes. I’ma go through websites, maybe someone has help for me, driving me nutso and yeah i work parttime student i dont have money to barely afford this phone. Thanks if u read this all!! haha. I been wondering if any music i’ve downloaded on it may have put a virus on my phone, off the Music Junk app?

  • JBee

    Albrealestate, I just lost Avatar today and some pics I emailed to myself to get them off the phone I can’t download because the computer is detecting a virus!!!! Noelle, I have been having the same problem with my phone being slow for the last 2 weeks (and I’ve only had it for a month!) I went to Tmobile today and they did a master reset but I’m still having problems.

  • Vinny

    I just switched from Verizon to Tmobile on Saturday and immediately, I noticed signal issues at home.
    At first, I just thought TMobile had bad service where I live but I checked their coverage area and I am in excellent coverage territory.

    I took the phone back to TMobile and they reset but I have the same problem.
    Basically, the phone jumps from 3G with no bars to Edge with no bars constantly. Then it would shoot up to four bars and seconds later back to none.

    it is happening whether I hold the phone or not.I definitely think it is a software issue.
    I have 14 days before 2 year contract kicks in so I may end up cancelling and heading back to Verizon.

    • tmOS94

      Dude , why should you switch when tmobile’s is getting the next dual core phone in just weeks!

  • Julie

    I experienced terrible signal problems. Called customer support and they asked me to replace my SIM card. Did that, and it still had no bars inside my home…where my blackberry used to have four bars. Tried it for five days but never got much of a signal inside and it was spotty around town. With sorrow, returned it today. Loved alot about the phone, but it needs a signal to work properly or at all. Maybe they will get it figured out…I’d wait awhile to get the Vibrant. Rumor is they are also putting a flash on the camera.

  • Roz

    I am now on my 3rd Samsung Vibrant. My husband and I have been with T Mobile for 8 years. When I updated my phone to a Vibrant, my text message plan was so old that they no longer offered it. Well, I had to pay more money to get another plan and they lowered by text messages by 100 text messages…I guess that is a thanks to us for being such loyal customers. I even mentioned that my son worked for ATT several years back and wanted me to go with ATT; I felt that I needed to keep this carrier, but bought a phone from him.

    I must state that I am in medical sales. I was told at the time of sale that T-Mobile had a back up application that would keep all my information. The Samsung Vibrant could not download contacts off of my previous phone, so I had to imput my contacts by hand. There was not a My first phone started dropping phone calls, it wiped out my events on my calendar and the reception bars stayed around 1 bar. I returned with the 14 day period.

    My second phone: The manager of one of the T Mobile offices added the TMobile Back Up application for me. He stated that it would back up all my information from the phone.

    Well, I was adding some contact information to my phone. Watched a movie on the TV, then picked up my phone and the phone wiped out all the contacts that I saved to the phone. After approximately 4 hrs on the phone with techinial support (dropped approx. 4 x while talking with them…of course even though they knew my number, they didn’t call back…award winning…well…)I still didn’t have a reason as to why my contacts were missing. All I was told was that when they looked for my contact information NOTHING and I mean NOTHING was backed up. I told them that the program was downloaded and everything. No where to be found!!! OK, I took the TMobile Back Up app off and went to reinstall as I was asked to do by one customer service rep. Well, when I read the application, since this was the first time I installed, it stated that the back up application will not work for the Vibrant phone and several other phones. Hmmm, let me see; the sales reps told me it would back up and the android customer service reps told me it would work…hmmm. Needless to say I am quite upset all the way around. I did try to use since I read that some people said it worked on their Vibrant. Well, it worked the first time I downloaded then it failed each time after that time.

    Problem #2 – Visual Voicemail doesn’t work, will let you listen to voicemail then force closes.

    I have spent a lot of time entering information to this Vibrant as well as trying to work out issues at 2 TMobile offices and talking with customer service. I am trying to figure out just why I got another Vibrant. I do like the phone, but I really don’t like all the problems.

    Has anyone else had any of these problems?

  • chalesman

    i’ve had the vibrant since the next day that it came out… i haven’t experience bad reception…but i have experience the laggy moments but when i do i just turn it off take out the battery, put it back and turn it on again and problem solved…but i started to a new problem today…the phone turns off by it self event tho it has battery and when i try to turn it back on it takes a long time after a few tries…so far am not liking it….

  • xclntgig

    I had the MyTouch Slide (actually still have it) and just paid it off and bought the Vibrant. It has a great screen and a fast processor, but that’s it.

    The software isn’t as “smart” as the HTC Sense on the Slide. The slide had widgets for things like calendar and email that I had become used to in the short time I used them. Also, I could tap an address in an email and it would ask if I wanted to Navigate (cool). Vibrant doesn’t do stuff like that.

    And, 3G\Wifi connectivity IS an issue with the Vibrant, and it’s not the same as the iPhone 4! I lose connection to my home wifi and 3g (Android Market, etc..) all the time. This happens wether I’m holding the phone or not.

    Good thing I haven’t sold my Slide on EBay yet. I will be returning the Vibrant tomorrow.

  • Ali

    Hi. I seem to be experiencing a very different problem. Aside from the no signals at times, i was recently informed by my friends that when they try to call me, my phone rings twice and goes straight to voice mail. The funny thing is that my phone usually doesn’t ring nor does it show the missed calls in the call log. Now, that problem only persists when the signal is low or if i’m using an app or something (not sure if not receiving calls would be related to that.) Any how, today i switched my setting from 3g to 2g and my signals strength has been great and i seem to be receiving all my calls. What confuses me is that I live in a city that has a very strong 3g signal, yet my phone doesn’t seem to pick up any of it. Could this be solely a phone issue, 3g in the area or a simple sim card issue?

  • Koozie

    Ok so I get great phone recieption but only problem is I cant send any texts messages or recieve any but funny part is I got text messages from tmoblie…. I try restarting phone and reseting to factory setting still nothing works.

  • crystal

    I have had my vibrant since it came out as well. Now, for the past two weeks I have been having a completely different problem. While texting people I would notice that they ‘stopped replying’ or so i thought. Then the next day or two I all of a sudden received 20+ messages from the previous conversations that never came through, all from different people. All the while i thought they weren’t responding but i was just not getting them. A few would come in here and there. This so far has happened three times within two weeks, the last occuring last night when my phone suddenly shut off (fully charged) and i took out the battery and turned the phone back on, i suddenly received a bunch of text messages. Customer service did say it was a problem and they would contact me in 1-3 days. I am now on day 7, sigh. Anyone else with this problem??

    • Marissa

      yes! this happens to me too! i just got me phone thursday and its done it to me three times and its very annoying, have you heard anything from them yet?

  • Lilmo

    Have had my vibrant a little over a month. Exprienced dropped calls almost immediatley. I finally called tmobile a week ago and they had me do a few things and even reset my signal to my local tower. Nothing worked so they just sent me a new vibrant. Well, its been a few days and am still having dropped calls. Seems to me its a vibrant problem. The interesting part is that I asked if this was a previously reported problem and they said no, but reading through this thread its obviously a common issue

  • josh

    i have had my vibrant for about a week awesome signal and awesome phone. only one problem when someone tries to call me i answer and i can hear them but apparently they cannot hear me it results in me having to call them. its an issue i barely started to have. but otherwise i love this phone. but that problem is annoying

  • Gavin

    My galaxy is the worst ever. I work for t-mobile, and I bought the galaxy s vibrant the first day it came out. Ever since then my texting would go out on me. Sometimes I will receive messages 3 days late. Sometimes 5. I called t-mobile and they escalated it to the engineering department….no fix yet. its been 3 months.

  • Alok

    I have had the same issue with no 3g coverage most of the times. I do get it once in a while but goes back to edge. Tried my sim on a different phone and got 3g and full network for almost 3-4 hrs without drop. Tried my friend’s sim(he had full bar and H)on my phone and then the signal dropped to a bar and edge network. Ordered 2 phones (one for me and one for my sister) and problems on both the phones. My sister’s phone is even worst. Call drops all the time.. No one can get in touch with her. PPl say that her phone rings but she doesnt get any rings on her phone (yes the volume was at the highest level).. :)
    Yesterday called customer service, the guy whom i spoke with didnt know what he was saying so there was no way he would have understood what problems i was facing with the phone. anyways the last resolution he gave me was that he’d send me another phone. So I asked him if he was sending me a new or a refurbished phone and to my surprise he told me that it most prob would be a refurbished one. wow what a service t-mobile has!! paid for a new phone and what i was getting was a refurbished one!! gosh.. what a rip-off… anyways then spoke with the supervisor, told me to get the newer kind of sim.. did that today and the network is even worse…wont connect to 3g at all.,.. the signal strength has improved from 2 bars to 4 bars though… supposed to receive a call from the supervisor today.. lets see what she comes up with..
    beaware if anyone is buying the vibrant.. get “my touch 4g” instead..

  • Chavezjason

    i hate my vibrant tmobil has sent me three of the same phone and they have all had problems

  • verymadboi

    ok so my vibrant constantly gets stuck at the vibrant screen its not rooted no custom roms but i stupidly traded my new G2 for this is there anyway i can get it back

  • Clausser1

    My email is horrible on my samsung vibrant. Love everything about the phone except email. Both aol and go daddy server. My wife has same phone and is much better. I have spent countless time on with t-mobile… can anyone help

  • Edgar

    I HATE T MOBILE AND THE VIBRANT….aahhhhhhhhhhhh

  • Mike

    Awful phone and customer service just wants to give you the run around. On second phone and having the same GPS, freezing, lagging, camera, and movie issues that first one had. The cost of the phone is not even close to service you can get with other smart phones. Don’t recommend the galaxy s or tmobile to anyone!

  • Mike

    Awful phone and customer service just wants to give you the run around. On second phone and having the same GPS, freezing, lagging, camera, and movie issues that first one had. The cost of the phone is not even close to service you can get with other smart phones. Don’t recommend the galaxy s or tmobile to anyone!

  • Uncutbuddy

    I HATE THIS PHONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Wabbick

    I am sick and ired of this phone I am on my 5th and none of them will charge. Tmobile will only send me more of this crap and wont do anything else I’ve tried ifferent chargers batteries and mster reset the phone