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GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

Journeyman

GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

Hi,

I've had my Epic 4g touch for about a week and have not been able to get the GPS function to work.  The GPS will not fix to any satelites even after hours of searching while being out in the open with clear skies.  I've tested it along a stand-alone Garmin GPS unit, and a Blackberry from another carrier and both the Garmin and the Blackberry found GPS signal within a few minutes of searching while the Epic did not find any signal, with all three units within 3 feet of each other.  I have looked through all of the settings multiple times to ensure that the GPS function was indeed activated (including the sensor aiding option) and everything is set-up to work.  I have tried Google Maps, Telenav, and some other GPS apps from the market and none are able to find a signal.  The best they can do is use the cell signal to approximate my location but this doesn't work well for actual navigation.  I also rebooted / removed the battery multiple times.  Is there anything additionally that I can do before I send in the phone for repairs?  Am I missing a certain setting that isn't found in the locations settings?  Is anyone else getting this same problem?  Any info would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

25 REPLIES
Wizard

Re: GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

I usually can get a pretty fast GPS lock (a couple seconds) however, every once in a while when I try, I get nothing.  What I do as a quick work around use this app:

https://market.android.com/details?id=com.chartcross.gpstest

Then once in that app, go to menu -> settings -> Update AGPS (at the top of the screen).  This will usually get it working pronto.  If this doesn't work for you, return your unit as it is most likely defective.

Journeyman SG2
Journeyman

Re: GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

I have the exact same GPS issue. GPS on this particular phone is very slow and inaccurate. Using the Telenav and Google maps to get direction is a lost cause. I had a Evo 4g before I upgraded and never had a problem with the GPS on that unit. When the GPS on the SG2 does work it works intermittently and is slow. For example just the other day I tried to GPS a place and it would show me the map layout using Telenav. It told me to turn left. So I turned left and after that it stop updating or responding. I exited that app and tried to use Google maps instead and same problem. I hope they fix this issue along with some other ones with this phone.

Journeyman

GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

Thanks for the tip mmark.  I tried it but still had no luck.  So, I called Sprint and went through all of the ususal steps (check settings, turn off, pull out battery, etc.) with the CSR on the line.  No success with that so he recommended that I take it to a Sprint service center to get it looked at.  I went there and showed them the phone and explained the problem, they told me a tech would look at it.  I returned at the time they told me to and they returned it to me but weren't able to fix the problem.  (they said it was working fine but still could not get the phone to find the GPS signal.  On a side note, these people didn't know the difference between GPS signal and cellular tracking - isn't there some kind of training required to be a "service technician"?)

So I returned home, decided on cancelling my service and contract since I am still within the 14-day period.  Before cancelling,  I decided to do a full factory data reset (including formatting USB storage) so that I wouldn't return the phone with any of my personal info.  Well, after I did the full reset, I figured, what the heck, and tried out the GPS one last time and lo and behold, it worked perfectly.  It found 8 different satellites within a few seconds.  Took a drive around town to test the navigation and motion tracking (with the "use wireless networks" option disabled, to be sure only GPS is being used) and everything worked perfectly.

So, clearly this is a software related issue, perhaps with the initial set-up from Sprint or some drivers or app.  It's definitley not a hardware issue since everything is working perfectly now, after a simple reset.  I wish the "professionals" who are paid to diagnose and fix these types of issues actually knew a little bit about how cell phones work.  I am keeping the phone but I am sure this customer service experience is a precursor to a long period of frustration to come whenever something odd comes up with my phone.  Sorry for the long-winded message but hopefully this helps someone else having a similar problem.  The GS2 is still super sweet!  Sprint customer service, weak at best.

Journeyman

GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

Just to update, it seems the problem is caused by encrypting the data on the internal storage.  I didn't think much of the fact that after reseting the phone, it decrypted everything.  After i got everything working, i encrypted the data again and my GPS functionality was gone again.  Took off encryption, rebooted, and everything works fine again with the GPS.  Not sure how they are related but if you are having a similar issue, it may be that the GPS function is disabled due to having encryption enabled on your intrnal storage.  Hopefully a fix comes out but in the mean time, working with decrypted storage is ok for me.

Journeyman

Re: GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

I had GPS issues (and signal issues and screen sensitivity issues when charging) with my Touch. At times I could open up a GPS program and get a lock within seconds. At other times, I could hold it up under clear skies and get nothing for five or more minutes. Usually a reboot would solve the issue, but you know what? I should not have to reboot my 600 dollar phone everytime I want to use GPS. What's next? Waving a dead chicken over it to get it to send text messages?!

I ended up canceling sprint, getting at&t, and using their galaxy s2. The GPS on that phone is flawless, and I have not had a problem with the phone yet. The data speeds are also much faster.

Journeyman

Re: GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

Sprint eagerly replaced my first E4GT after verifying that the GPS apps would initially identify but not update my location.  We tested the GPS function on the new device and it worked flawlessly.  After spending HOURS rebuilding my settings and apps on the new device, suddenly it would not update my location again.  Your clue about encryption was the key to not returning the phone again.  I decrypted my data and GPS works beautifully again. 

My suspicion is that the first phone hardware was fine.  Most likely, the problem was interaction between encryption and GPS function.  Sprint employees should be briefed to avoid unnecessarily replacing a massive number of devices.  Thanks for the heads up about encryption!

Journeyman

Re: GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

Thanks for the clue about the encryption. This solved the problem. This should be solved by Samsung, since encryption is a major business feature and a requirement in my company.

Thanks again.

Journeyman

Re: GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

How do you disable encryption? I'm having MAJOR issues with GPS. The encrypt phone options are grayed out on my phone.

Journeyman SG2
Journeyman

Re: GPS Problems with Epic 4G Touch

The suggested method of decrypting the device didn't work for me since mine wasn't ever turned on. I did a factory reset to no avail including wiping on the usb storage. Thanks for the suggestion though. It was worth a try.

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