Q: I have two Galaxy Tab S2 tablet computers that continuously turn themselves on and off. I’ve tried many suggested solutions, including charging the battery, pressing the power and “volume up” buttons at the same time, and removing the tablet cover (which contains a magnet). A technician suggested that the tablets’ circuit boards may be causing the problem. What can I do?

— John Ericksen, Chippewa Falls, Wis.

A: This problem is familiar to many owners of the Galaxy Tab S2, and is usually caused by the device’s battery. (It’s unlikely that both of your tablets have flawed circuit boards.)

The most effective solution appears to be temporarily disconnecting the tablet’s battery, either physically or electronically. There’s disagreement about exactly why that works, but there’s apparently some benefit in draining the electrical charge from tablet components.

Physically disconnecting the battery is a slow process that requires small tools. This battery-replacement video (see tinyurl.com/y49wjoa7) shows how to disconnect one (you don’t need to remove).

A simpler method is to use the Galaxy Tab S2’s “soft reset” feature, which simulates disconnecting the battery. Hold down both the power (on-off) button and the “volume down” keys for about 45 seconds. This reset won’t cause any loss of data.

If disconnecting the battery doesn’t help, try clearing the tablet’s cache memory (see solution two at tinyurl.com/y2btlf4n) or returning the device to its factory settings (see “Master reset with hardware keys” at tinyurl.com/y6nkspap). Note that the “master reset” will erase data stored in the tablet’s memory, but won’t affect data stored on either the tablet’s SIM card (which connects a tablet to a wireless phone network) or its removable memory card.


Steve Alexander covers technology for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Readers may write to him at Tech Q&A, 425 Portland Ave. S., Minneapolis, Minn. 55488-0002; email: steve.j.alexander@gmail.com. Please include a full name, city and phone number.