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Original topic:

S20 Ultra camera focus issues

(Topic created on: 17-10-2021 12:35 AM)
25223 Views
JonesTheSteam
Journeyman
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I am suffering with the same issue I have seen many others describe in Samsung Members and online namely the camera focus issue.

I purchased this phone mainly for the camera upgrade and I used to use it on almost a daily basis.

I had no problem with the phone from new but since the last major security update the camera is practically useless. I currently stand absolutely no chance capturing a spontaneous shot in anything other that 0.5 focal length. That seems to be the only focal length which will auto focus. I have to zoom in and out in hope the focus grabs but even if it does it can lose focus and start focus hunting again.

I have followed all the recommended fixes up to totally wiping the phone but after hours in contact with Samsung support they have now told me I have to take the phone into Samsung to be assessed before we can proceed any further.

This means the phone will be wiped, updated and I will be without it for several days. To say this is a massive inconvenience is an understatement as I use the device for banking and 2FA which are not easily setup again after a wipe.

The only thing that remotely makes me want to consider this option is Samsung have promised me the problem WILL be resolved one way or another.

Do I believe them? At this point no, not at all but unless I want to live with an expensive and useless (for my needs) phone have no choice but to go through with this. 

What really annoys me is I am convinced this is purely a software issue so could be resolved with a software update but instead I have to jump through these other hoops.

I own many, many Samsung products (owned a Samsung phone since the S3 andcurrently 7 Samsung mobiles in my household) but this situation has really tarnished the company in my view. 

Not so long ago this was an expensive flagship phone and I am amazed there seems to be so many people experiencing these problems and Samsung really seem to be ignoring the issue and hoping it goes away.

At this moment I don't think I'll ever purchase another Samsung mobile based on my experience with the S20 so Samsung you really need to up your game and proactively engage with S20 Ultra owners and fix these problems before people start to vote with their feet and go elsewhere.
19 REPLIES 19
Members_a2Kcla2
Student
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Need to click on photo to see difference 

TerminatorOWNZ
Explorer
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Hey there, keeping this thread alive, as I'm having the same main camera focusing issue. Adding my two cents on top.

I was reluctant to update to android 12 and One UI 4 for almost ten months and gave it up about three weeks ago. Since then, the main camera module has been 50/50 able to focus on objects that are far than one or two meters away. In other words, it is totally unreliable at this point. Can I have an answer if this is addressed to an engineering/developers team, and should I hope to receive the fix one day?

 The Samsung phone is the heart of the whole ecosystem that consists of numerous devices (Galaxy Tab s7, watch 4 classic, galaxy watch, galaxy watch active 2, and galaxy s20 ultra). I can't believe that the lifespan of the flagship phone that I bought  Nov 26, 2020, can be so short - less than two years. 

My wife has been using (is using) the iPhone 12 pro max (+whole ecosystem) for the same period of time and frankly speaking, with every update, the iPhone is just getting more refined. I would really love to have such an attitude for the customers from the Samsung side.

Adding a few recent samples. The first one is a quick snap with the main camera (x1), the second one after realizing that it's out of focus and after giving a slight nudge:

quick snap with main cameraquick snap with main cameraanother one after light nudge :(another one after light nudge 😞

GYHT
Apprentice
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My suggestion is to try and replace the camera module. After extensive testing , I decided on a third-party camera replacement which is cheaper and equal to the original Samsung part. The quote from Samsung was too high.

The good news was all went back to normal after the fix. I suspect the original lens had shifted out of position for some reason,  causing the focus issues. Perhaps I'd knocked the phone or put it down too hard. That's my recommendation.

TerminatorOWNZ
Explorer
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Thanks for sharing your experience, glad that you've found the solution!

I still believe and actually hope that it's a firmware/software issue. 

As I haven't experienced any issues before the recent update on Android 12 and One UI 4.

And for the past 2 - 3 weeks, there have been no cases of dropping the phone or any other that kind of violent stuff since the update. It looks to me that the camera focus is, by mistake, fixed to work within one (-two) meters. And the focus is actually working, it's just locked to look for close objects. As it probably would act if to look for some documents to scan. Restarting the camera app is also helping in 50% of fail cases. But only for "the session" not permanently.

I've also read numerous Reddit posts that claimed this bug appeared after some of the recent updates. 

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GYHT
Apprentice
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There are youtube videos that give suggestions for resetting, etc - I tried them all.  They may work for you.  I also tested with other camera apps - and it was hard to isolate the problem.  Some picture modes offered different results - 4:3 seemed to be sharper than 16:9, etc.  The camera is a sensitive device I believe.  A slight shift in the alignment could create focus issues in certain modes.    Good luck...

Sookoo496
First Poster
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This method works.

 

But its really annoying and frustrating. To think with these flagship phones we have to be doing this and it mainly happens after a year when my warranty is up. This is my main reason I was considering going with apple or xiaomi 

Members_lwJCVu9
First Poster
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I'm actually amazed that shaking the camera fixed this... reminds me of the old days when you had to slap the side of the TV to make it work 😅

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surrfdude52
First Poster
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I have the same problem the S8 takes better pictures than the S20.s20s20s8s8s8s8s20s20

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ibby123567
First Poster
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I have the same problem afyer an update I'm really considering leaving Samsung for good
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buckaa
First Poster
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Anyone actually get a software fix? 3 household s20 ultras have all done the same in the space of weeks. It's as though it's to make you upgrade
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