Help! My phone isn’t ringing

A reader had an issue with her smartphone and it happens to be one I’ve experienced.

“My Samsung phone has been not ringing when I had a call, it just went directly to voice mail and then I couldn’t open it. I have had the phone for 3 years and it never did that until I moved into a retirement home. I have taken it to AT&T twice and they tell me that they can’t find anything wrong with it. Well, good news. Yesterday I had a message on my phone that I haven’t signed in to Samsung. ( In 3 years they just noticed) So I went through the sign in process, the old lost messages popped up and the phone calls are now working. Figure that one out. But I am happy. Thought you might like to know this if anyone else comes up with this problem.”


Your problem is not unusual. In fact, sometimes it happens to me. A change of location (which means a change of cell towers) sometimes results in difficulty receiving calls. As with WiFi connections, sometimes objects like buildings, trees, and even the walls or furniture placement in your house can cause a dead spot.  I have two dead spots for calls in my house. One is the left side (but not the right side) of my desk and the center of my sofa.

It’s perfectly possible for a phone to have problems receiving calls on one side of a room and not on the other. Or to have problems at certain times of the day or year but not others.  It’s perfectly possible that there really was nothing wrong with your phone.

Since you apparently hadn’t logged into your Samsung account, I suspect the problem might have been that your phone hadn’t received the latest updates. Each Android phone is a little different and requires specific updates based on the brand and your carrier. Your move may have coincided with a missed update.

Here’s how to check if you’ve got the latest updates on a Samsung phone. Open Settings on your phone and scroll down to System Updates.


Choose Check for system updates.


Your phone will let you know if you need an update.





2 thoughts on “Help! My phone isn’t ringing

  1. Thanks. Had the same problem along with my phone showing there were no updates, but in conversation with a tech, he got the latest update going. I expect to keep seeing problems because I seem to be Google dominated and trying to navigate that swamp is not how I want to live my life.

  2. What a surprise to learn the phones don’t work as you’ve described. I have had a replacement phone for two weeks and it’s very different from my previous two phones which were quite stable. No functions work as previously. it’s very touch sensitive, shuts itself off constantly, chugs battery usage and so on. I’ve checked settings. when I got this phone it functioned differently right away so called Verizon. There really wasn’t an explanation of what was happening. They said the phone was fine it went through its checks and checked out fine. It is a refurbished phone.

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