How to turn off the 3 most frustrating Samsung Galaxy S4 features

There are a lot of great things about the Samsung Galaxy S4, but with those great things, there are a few very minor but potentially extremely frustrating features that are either hard to turn off, or difficult to make function properly. We’ll discuss the three most frustrating features of the GS4 below, and show you how to turn them off. Note that these instructions are for a stock Galaxy S4, and are a little different for other versions of Android. If you need updated help for a newer version of Android, just let us know in the comments section below.

Crushed by TalkBack mode

This is the single most frustrating feature on the phone. For curious users who might explore their phone and want to see what the app does, it can be life changing – for all the wrong reasons. This is because with a click or a tap, you can completely lock yourself out of any function on the phone, unless you know how to fix it. The reason it’s frustrating is because too often, users think they’re exploring a cool feature, only realising too late that it’s actually a feature intended for people with very bad eyesight or other handicaps that require device assistance.talkback

Once this feature is activated, all phone features require two taps. So the first time you tap something, your Galaxy S4 will announce the name of that function, and the second time you tap it, the function will be activated. Additionally, any scrolling or swipe functions require two fingers to perform. This has left many a user frustrated enough to want to pitch their phone out a window. Sometimes carrier or device tech support isn’t helpful either, suggesting hard resets, or other steps that are just unnecessary.

To turn it off, you need to enter your passcode or pin by double tapping each number. Obviously this can be an exercise in frustration if you have an alphanumeric password with shift characters, but it can be done. Once you’re back in the device, you can then navigate to the TalkBack feature and disable it. Performing the following steps does this:

1) Go to your Home Screen.
2) Double tap the Menu option.
3) Double tap the tab for My Device.
4) Scroll down to Accessibility using two fingers, and then double tap it.
5) Look for TalkBack, and double tap the switch to turn it off.
TalkBack should now be disabled, and you can resume normal device usage. For screenshots of this, you can visit this how-to guide.

If your phone is still taking back to you, or announcing incoming calls and messages, you might still have Driving mode or Text to Speech turned on. You can turn both of these off, but the options are in different places.

Driving mode drives you crazy

Driving mode was supposed to be great, and it is great – whey you’re in the car. The rest of the time it turns your mobile into a mess, randomly announcing calls and text messages. Depending on where you are, this can be embarrassing, or worse, put you in a bad spot with your significant other. No one wants to hear a phone announce calls when they’re looking for a little privacy.

To turn off Driving Mode, follow these steps:
1) Go to your Home screen.
2) Tap on your Apps icon.
3) Look for Settings, and then open it.
4) Tap the tab for My Device.
5) Scroll to the ‘Personalization’ section, and tap Driving Mode.
6) Tap the switch to turn it off.
7) Your phone should now stop announcing every little thing.

There is one last place you might need to look in order to silence a phone that just doesn’t want to quit.

Text to Speech just won’t shut up

If your phone is still talking to you after performing the steps described earlier, you’re likely a victim of Text to Speech, even if you didn’t turn it on. This is because it can be turned on in other areas, by other functions, or through an app you might not even be aware of having given permission to for enabling it. In this case, you will need to turn off both Google and Samsung Text to Speech options.

Follow these steps to perform this action:
1) Navigate to the Home screen.
2) Tap on Apps.
3) Tap on Settings.
4) Select the ‘More’ tab.
5) Find the ‘System Manager’, and tap ‘Application Manager’.
6) Tap the ‘All’ tab.
7) Scroll down to the Google Text to Speech engine, and tap to disable it.
8) Scroll down to the Samsung Text to Speech engine, and tap to disable it.
9) Your device should now no longer be talking to you, or announcing calls at inconvenient or inappropriate moments.

Overall the Samsung Galaxy S4 is a rock solid device. These features we’ve discussed above all have their uses, but accidentally turning them on, or worse, not knowing how to turn them off, can be very frustrating. However, a little patience and the correct button presses can fix all of that and get you back to normal mobile use.