I have been a loyal Samsung S series owner since my first S2 and have recommended these devices without hesitation. When I got my new S20 Ultra, it held the promise of being the most technological advanced. It was and by far the largest investment I made for in a mobile device. The shortcomings of the camera's poor performance quickly became evident, the autofocus and closeup shots were not nearly as good as my previous S10. Excitement was replaced with remorse and waiting and hoping for software updates to fix the bugs proved slow and failed to accomplish any notable improvements. I’ve always looked after my devices and kept them safe with protective cases and the longevity of my Samsung devices has allowed me to pass them down to appreciative family members. I could justify their increased cost when this value could be realized over the useful life span. Unfortunately, this is not to be the case with my S20 Ultra.
In anticipation again I hoped the update to Android 12 held promise of improvements to the camera's poor performance. Again, disappointment and an escalated level of frustration. Soon after the camera became completely unstable. Sometimes working, others quickly terminating the camera app completely with the "camera failed" message. Sporadic success using the camera over the weeks that followed during my workday left me frustrated further as I could no longer rely on my phone’s camera for simply documentation. Researching and troubleshooting in my evenings to resolve the issue proved futile. Several sessions with Samsung online support seemed to correct the issue only for it to resurface a day later. I took the phone to an authorized Samsung service center after exhausting all attempts to resolve the issue with online support. The tech was convinced an update was at fault as they had experienced similar instances previously. The phone was re-flashed to a previous Android version, and again the camera was operating properly. Next day, no changes, still in factory reset state, the camera failed after attempting a few test shots. Back to the service center. New front camera installed, tested good for several attempts then failed. Replaced original front camera, working again fine after half day of testing and was told it was ready to pick up. Called back an hour later to be told the problem is back. After 2 trips to the service center and swapping out several parts and the camera still was unstable. The service tech complimented my patience, but it was apparent they had invested considerable time and were equally frustrated with this repair. I was presented with the only remaining option to try, replacement of the main board. They stated they could not recommend this costly of a repair as it was over half the replacement price of the device & could not guarantee a reoccurrence of the issue.
Once again, I was left with a lighter wallet and a phone "with one of the best cameras" that no longer works. My 12 months warranty has long since lapsed. My patience has been tested and like my wallet has been worn thin. Most significantly my confidence in Samsung to provide the technology that I rely on for work and pleasure so extensively has been my biggest loss. I’m currently using the phone, which is just 24 months old young, having to also carry a digital camera during my workday and having the headache of file transfer in order to use my photos for documents and communication. Replacing this device with the newest Samsung model is not a decision I am willing to make all considered.
I am appealing to you to make this right and restore Samsung’s reputation of quality as a leading-edge mobile device manufacturer for this loyal lifelong customer. I am willing to share more detail as warranted in good faith that there’s some means to conclude this bad experience in a positive way.
- Camera Fail
Hi, We apologize for the inconvenience caused, we request you to visit any nearest Samsung authorized service center so that any of the senior technician will examine the phone to determine the root cause of the issue and fix it.
Good afternoon, the authorized Samsung service center here, Cell Mechanics, have done all the diagnosis on the device. I have been advised the replacement cost for the main board component is $860 and would only be warranted for 3 months as stated by Kyle at their head office. The used market value of the phone is less than that cost. The risk that there could be a heritable fault with this board combined with the repair cost & very short warranty period makes it an illogical decision to proceed with the repair. I would be willing to cover the labor for the repair which I consider fair. The main board cost is prohibitive, the premature failure appears to be a common issue with this device and apparent to several techs I spoke with. Samsung must have knowledge of this issue and could offer some means of compensation or warrant the board in good conscience. No Company has a history of releasing a perfect consumer product every single time especially with something so technologically advanced. Companies that can acknowledge fault and support a failed product outside their obligated liability period understand customer brand loyalty and are leaders in their industry.