Mobile Phones

Why is my iPhone shutting down?

Episode 1417

Brad from Los Angeles, CA
iPhones

Brad and his wife both have iPhones and they shut down with 15% left. What gives? Leo says it's a software thing. In essence, the phone is making a guess and as a phone gets older, it has less capacity. So that estimate can get more inaccurate the older the phone gets. Batteries can be recharged about 500 times, and as it gets closer to that number, it gets more inaccurate. Brad doesn't want to buy a new phone, though, and Leo says he doesn't have to. He can go into Apple and request they replace the battery. It's about $100. Can he do it himself? Leo says maybe.

Do I have a virus on my Android phone?

Diane from Oxnard, CA

Episode 1417

Diane got a message that said "downloading virus" when she went to a website on her Android phone. Leo says that's a bogus popup designed to scare her into downloading something. There's no legitimate message on her phone warning her that it will download a virus. She has a blank screen now, though. Leo says that is probably coincidental. It sounds like her phone's screen has gone out, or she could have a bad charging cable or clogged charging port preventing it to charge. There is a forced recovery mode for Android to bring it back up.

Why am I getting my wife's phone calls?

Episode 1417

John from Fallbrook, CA
iOS Family Sharing

John and his wife share an iCloud account and whenever his wife makes a phone call, it appears on his phone and vice versa. Why is that? Leo says it's because they're sharing the same Apple ID. They will also be getting the same text messages as well. Leo recommends having separate iCloud accounts and Apple IDs. Then share the contacts, calendar and other data with a shared Google account. That way it won't impact their phone calls, text messages, etc. All they'll need to do is add that account in their phone's mail, contacts, and calendar settings.

Samsung Announces Galaxy Note 8

Episode 1417

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Seeking to get out into the market before Apple launches the 10th anniversary iPhone, Samsung has announced the Galaxy Note 8. Leo says it looks pretty good, but he doesn't like the positioning of the fingerprint reader because it's near the camera lens, meaning you'll likely be constantly dirtying up the lens of your camera. There's also a button for "Bixby," a new mobile assistant. Leo says it's another button to keep track of, and it's unnecessary.

How do I get updates to an unlocked mobile phone?

Episode 1416

Roger from Coosbay, OR
Samsung Galaxy S7

Roger has an old Samsung Galaxy S7, which is now unlocked and carrier free. How will he get updates now? Leo says that he should still get updates from it, but in many cases they come through WiFi and not over the air. So if he's attached to WiFi with it, he should get the update directly from Samsung. That's how Apple does it, but he'll need to talk to his existing carrier to find out.

Can I get my photos back from a restored iPhone?

Episode 1415

Joe from Garden Grove, CA
Apple iPhones

Joe hasn't backed up his iPhone in years because his iCloud is full and he doesn't want to pay for more storage. He finally got around to plugging his phone in using iTunes and he thought he had chosen to back up the iPhone, but instead, he restored his iPhone backup and lost everything. Can he reverse the damage? Leo says probably not. This isn't Joe's fault — it's Apple's because iTunes is awful and it shouldn't offer to restore a phone before backing it up. That's bad behavior. There is a ray of hope that iTunes backed it up. Leo suggests trying to restore the phone again.

How can I fix my Android phone?

Episode 1414

Jerry from Santa Clarita, CA
Samsung Note 4

Jerry wants to get his Samsung Note 4 mobile device repaired. It keeps booting. Leo says that mobile devices are now generally considered disposable. Leo says to try refreshing the phone. To do this, he should go to Settings > Backup and Reset > Restore to Factory Defaults. If that doesn't work, then he could try calling Samsung and ask if they would repair it. They'll really want him to buy a new phone, though.