Samsung Gear VR headset Problems and Issues
Devices

14 Problems and Issues with the Samsung Gear VR headset

Virtual reality isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, and that’s especially true if it doesn’t work properly. The Samsung Gear VR headset is a great gadget that has a lot to offer, but only if it works properly.

We’ve prepared a list with 14 of the most common problems relating to Samsung VR, as well as solutions and tips to help get you back to (virtual) reality.

If you haven’t bought one yet, check out our product review to find out what we thought of the device.

Let’s get started with a simple one;

1. Casing issues with the Gear VR

Carry Case

Will your phone slot into the Gear VR headset if you have a case on?

Your device won’t clip in if you’ve left the case on, so you’ll have to be careful while you’re using it.

Here’s a list of compatible devices:

  • S7
  • S7 edge
  • Note5
  • S6
  • S6 edge
  • S6 edge+

As it is, you won’t be able to have any casing on your device while it’s connected to the Gear headset. Users have reported that it can even partly unpeel screen protectors, which should give an indication of just how snug it is.


2. Overheating with the Gear VR

Feel The Burns

This is a big one, and one of the most talked about issues with the device. (Just take a look at the image above.)

My S7 didn’t get unbearably hot during use, but there was definitely a temperature rise which wasn’t very nice. Some users have reported warning messages, and it seems to be more prevalent on older devices.

If you continue to face problems, make sure to keep it off charge during use, as that can also contribute to overheating. If your device gets too hot make sure to stop using the VR headset, as you don’t want to cause any long term damage to the device.


3. Sickness, Headaches and Nausea

Sickness

How bad was it for you when you first used the Samsung Gear headset?

As you might expect, it can be hard to get used to VR at first, and it’ll affect everybody differently. I felt really sick when I started off, although the feelings did subside after a while.

Check out our Samsung Gear product review if you want to find out just how bad it was for me.

Sitting down is one of the best ways to get rid of any nausea, although you should remove the helmet if the feelings continue to persist. They will go away eventually, but be careful if you tend to suffer from motion sickness, or if you don’t have the strongest stomach.


4. Slow Audio

This is a simple issue to resolve, as you just have to reset your device to get the audio working again.

If you continue to face issues with slow audio, it’s possible that using a Bluetooth headset could be the cause. Switching to a normal pair of headphones should help in the meantime.

ALSO READ: How to Watch Movies and Television on Samsung Gear VR Headset


5. Black Screen with the Gear VR

Black Screen

If you’re facing issues with a black screen, the best thing to do is to wait for a few seconds, as it could potentially be lag. If it persists, you’re going to have to reset if you want to get going again.

Black Screen

I didn’t have these issues myself, but it’s annoying when you just want to play about with VR, or if you’ve purchased a new app that won’t work.

We’ll discuss issues with lag below, so carry on reading if you want to find out more.


6. Issues with the store

If you’re having problems with the store, you’re not the only one. As a society, we’ve become used to app stores working perfectly over the years so it can be hard to know what to do if it’s not as responsive as we would like.

There’s no clear fix, as it could be dependant on your carrier and your location. You’ll have to wait for an update or a fix if you continue to have problems.


7. The Lens

Lens

As you might expect, the lens is pretty powerful, and it’s not a good idea to look into the sun. (You could severely damage your eyesight with a direct glance.)

You’ll also have to be careful when putting it down, as it has the potential to burn a surface if it’s left with the lens focused downwards. (Don’t get any ideas, ant-burning fans!)

This is really unlikely to happen, but it would be devastating if it did. Be aware of your surroundings, (if that’s possible in VR) and stay away from the sun!


8. Battery Issues with the Gear VR

S7 Battery

Of course, when we say battery issues we’re referring to the battery on your device.

VR is always likely to cause battery drain on your phone, given the nature of what you’re using the device for.

You don’t even need to have a headset to have issues. Here’s a comment from the S7 Reddit page:

My wife and I both have Verizon S7s. We don’t have Gear VR devices (or any gear or VR devices). Yet, when I look in the app manager to see which applications are draining the battery, at the end of every day the past week on each phone, “Gear VR Service” is 23-28% of battery life…the option to uninstall/silence this app is greyed out, and it doesn’t appear in Tasker’s app kill list. Anyone else having this problem? Anyone know how to disable this service?

Wow!

(For the record, you can disable a few packages within the option settings on your device to kill these tasks.)

You don’t want to ruin the battery in your new device, so be careful if you plan for extended sessions. When combined with overheating, it can drastically drain your overall battery life.

Be careful, and listen to any warning messages if they appear.

Cool


9. Fog with the Gear VR

This is more of a minor issue, but it’s annoying nonetheless. The fog is caused by the difference in temperature between your face and the inside of the headset, and it should go away over time.

Warming the goggles slightly before use is an option, although anti-fog products are also available if you’re impatient.

Here’s an example that is pretty cool if you live in a um, cool area.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCgvTO9sqRY


10. Minimum age requirements for Gear VR

There’s a minimum age requirement for the Gear VR, and it’s advised that children just above the age should be careful while using the tech.

The Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe has confirmed why they made this decision;

We put a warning on right when you put it on and the age of 13 was something that made a lot of sense when we became a part of Facebook, their age is 13 as well. And so we just felt ‘let’s start at 13, let’s evolve the technology more, let’s build more confidence, in the health and safety side of it. And eventually, one day, we definitely want to have Oculus for kids, especially for all the educational use of this.

So, it’s probably not a good idea to let kids play with the technology after all. (Especially considering that the CEO himself said that it was a ‘health and safety’ issue first and foremost.)

Some rules are made to be broken, but it’s best to take his advice about this one.


11. Comfort with the Gear VR

A number of people have said that they just can’t get used to the headset for extended periods of time, despite the foamy bits inside.

I didn’t have any issues, but maybe I’m just lucky that I don’t wear glasses and I have a generic shaped head. Back to the point, Android central noted that the headset is glasses-friendly, but that doesn’t mean that it’s going to be comfortable for you.

Quite a few people own a headset, so ask around and try it out on before you rush to get one.


12. Network Errors

Network

Now, I don’t want to alarm you, but you could get a few network errors like the user above. (This is specifically for when you’re attempting to set up the device.) For any Samsung S7 issues, ask below and we’ll help out.

It’s worrying to think that the headset could potentially damage your new Samsung handset, but a reset will get it working again and it’s unlikely to mess up your device.

Unfortunately, there seems to be no fix for this problem, and you’ll probably have to wait for an update if you keep getting network errors when you try to connect your phone.


13. General Lag

Lag

Lag will always be a problem, but there are times when it can be unbearable.

If you have a newer handset, you should have less of an issue, but it will affect everybody differently, depending on your device and what you have running in the background. (Disabling some background apps and tasks should help.)

It’s usually caused by updates or poorly optimized code, and there sometimes isn’t much you can do about it. Waiting it out can be tough, but that’s how it is sometimes with newer technology.


14. Apps, Games or Software isn’t working or downloading

Apps

If one of your new VR apps or games refuses to download, you can restart the device to attempt to start it again.

Help

It seems likely that Facebook permissions could also be a cause, so check this forum post if you’re still having issues.


Frequency of Issues:

Despite all of the problems listed above, most can be solved with a simple fix. The headset doesn’t really have many issues, and it’s good to know for current owners and those thinking of getting one in the near future.

(It’s also worth remembering that the technology is still being improved, and the headset is a very early model.)


Conclusion

There are always issues when it comes to integrating new technology. You’d think that the small selection of devices would make it easier to develop for, but there were always going to be teething problems along the way.

It’s a great piece of kit despite the issues, although it’s a shame that some people will be unhappy with VR because of problems that stemmed from the hardware itself.

If you’re not impressed than wait a few years and try again. You might be surprised at just how good virtual reality really is!

Next Read: Samsung Gear VR

Despite these issues, what do you think of the Samsung Galaxy VR? Do you have a separate problem or solution to anything on our list? Let us know in the comments below!

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69 Comments

  1. My S6 worked fine in the gear VR until today, then it simply stopped going into VR mode. When I try to launch oculus VR and the system tells me to put the phone into to Gear VR, I slot in the phone and II hear the beep indicating that the phone is connected to the gear, but when I put it on my face, it’s still on the oculus start screen. It just won’t go into VR mode… I’ve already performed a hard reset and reinstalled Grear VR manager and Oculus app, but no luck. Any ideas?

    Thanks,

    Tadgh

    1. Did you install something like Greenify/powernap? If so it might have killed the oculus app.
      Or maybe the built-in battery optimizer on your phone is killing it? Check in battery settings and disable it from killing oculus app. Disabling Facebook has also helped many that have had problems with their Gear VR. Hope this helps.

      1. Thanks for the reply! After the hard reset I did not install any apps other than the Samsung 360 manager and the Oculus VR app, both of which are required for VR mode with the Gear. So in other words I haven’t installed anything except what I need for VR.

        I have power saving, ultra power saving and app saving all turned off. And Samsung 360 and Oculus VR set to disable in power saving.

        After all that, still no joy, except for some reason the phone is now launching into Oculus VR mode but then freezing immediately, leaving me looking at a VR picture that does not pan when I move my head.

        Any other ideas?

        1. Don´t worry; you´re no the only one suffering this problem, but so far a permanent solution hasn´t been found. It´s being said that it could be some bug, but for now, you can try to launch what you want to do from the oculus app then insert the phone into the headset. The home screen is bypassed.

  2. I have a 7edge and gear vr.
    Every thing worked great for about a month.
    Now when I insert device it says remove for update.
    Except it wont connect to server.
    Have tried everything and surprisingly not much info on line with this issue.
    Help?!

  3. I have a Note 5 and have been using the VR for a while now. It’s been a great experience until about a month ago, when I noticed my phone home screen is appearing in the background when I use my VR. I have deleted all of my home screen apps, but they still appear in my VR. For example, when I am in the home section of the VR, looking around the living room, I can see my home apps, which, though they appear very faded, are a serious distraction when I’m playing games. What is causing this and is there any way to fix it?

    1. I had the same issue with my brand new Galaxy S7 Edge. Got my device replaced…didn’t help. Called carrier….couldn’t help. Called Samsung…couldn’t help. Finally found a fix on my own. I went to Oculus.com and created my account there. When I tried again with the VR I had no more issues. Crazy thing was my husband and I got the exact same phones at the same time and he had NO issues! Oh and one more thing…he got the Blue and I got the Silver. By chance is yours Silver? If so maybe it’s with the Silver..just a thought. Good luck! Hope this helps!

      1. How odd! I’ll dig into this more and see if I can find something that might explain the difference.

        Thanks for your contribution! I love when Joy of Android readers can help each other out.

  4. I just bought the vr today. I have a s7 and I’m coming across the network error. Plus it says that the download is 1.5 mb but it’s up to 1667.4 mb and nothing. Please help

  5. Can anyone help, S6 edge and latest 2016 gear VR, when I attach the phone not a beep, nothing. I have the latest software but wanted to check there isn’t a setting on the phone that could be rejecting the headset?

  6. After making sure all the Facebook apps were enabled, my gear vr still won’t allow me to install any apps. Tried restarting it, uninstalling/reinstalling it, nothing seems to work. My phone is a S7. Please help

  7. I just got a Samsung gear VR headset to go along with my GS7. I am new to the VR world. I was able to get everything configured and working, but was very disappointed with how the content looked. It’s very hard to get the image to focus. In fact, I would say it’s never in focus. My question, do I have a faulty set, or is this just the way VR content looks? So far I have just viewed some of the video on Oculus’s website. I have tried it both with my glasses on and with them off and don’t really see where it makes a difference. It’s a shame because so far from what I have seen this would be phenomena if this was in focus.

  8. Im trying to set up my account on the occulus app but when it gets to sending me a verification email it says there is no network connection.

    1. You could try to sign up on your computer . Other people have said making their password more secure seemed to have helped. I know that seems odd to symbols and numbers to your new account password to fix a network issue, but others said it worked first time when they made their password more secure.

  9. So, for some reason my Galaxy S7 is just a hair too small to go in the Gear VR but I don’the understand why? I’ve seen videos that show that the S7 should fit!? I try putting it in and it doesn’the reach the other side so I can’t use the headset without having to hold the phone in place

    1. is it because the headphone jack is a little off?
      There was one that fit the S6. The S7 moved the audio jack a little so it doesn’t fit right.

  10. Samsung Gear VR broke my screen!
    I wish I had not just tried my Samsung s6 in the gear VR. I was worried about something happening to my phone since I had to take it out of the case. Regardless of how careful I was, it broke the top front of my screen when it snapped into the headset. It is not a large spider web crack, but wouldn’t have happened if a case had been on my phone. Extremely upset right now and I do not recommend this product!

  11. I created an online account with Oculus. I then downloaded the Oculus app for the VR. When I plug the S7 in to the VR it asks me to create an account but will not allow me to use the existing online account. Any suggestions?

    1. try to delete the data and cache on your phone for the app. It might just be getting hung up on something.

      Otherwise, there are reports of this happening when there are updates to the app. It may just need to propagate.

  12. My oculus app keeps telling me to turn off safety mode to use VR apps, but it is already off. How do I get oculus to realize safety mode is off?

  13. I have downloaded several other apps from the Google play store and for the life of me , I cannot get them to play when I put my s7 edge into the gear vr headset…the downloaded app will be on and as soon as I put my headset on, it goes to the oculus home screen…am I doing something wrong or are the app not compatible?? Please help…

  14. I have a brand new Samsung VR Headset (Blue/Black version)
    I am using a Samsung 6 edge + and the picture appears to have slight “cross hatching” throughout the entire field of view. Is this just a function of the pixel limitations of the Phone? The instructions mention taking off the factory lens protectors, but there is nothing to remove. I thought it would have like those thin peel off clear pieces of plastic, but there was none.

    1. it could be a processing power limitation. are you running other apps at the same time as you’re using the VR? maybe shutting them down might help.

  15. Hi,

    We have a Samsung S7 and a brand new VR. We have exactly the same problem that was mentioned at nr. 5 above (5. Black Screen with the Gear VR).

    We have tried everything (resett, back to fabric settings, remove all oculus apps, install it again etc. etc.) Pleaaaseee help us! 🙁

  16. Why doesn’t my edge s6 not fitting after it has been placed on b? Plus once i click phone in slot doesn’t give me any vr options to play?

  17. Hi my gear vr was working fine with my s7 untill a month or 2 ago i now have to be near a wifi connection to use it, otherwise a network error keeps appearing on the screen every 3 seconds.. and was wondering where the VRIDEO app has gone??

    1. to me it sounds like it may not be the app (unless there was an update that wrecked it). It sounds like it is the antenna in your device. Was it dropped or did you add a new case or screen protector? these can have an adverse affect on the antenna in the devices.

    1. they seem like they are finicky and have to be seated in just right. people have reported rebooting both devices or removing the VR connector, or seating the phone in better to get it to work.

  18. Hi I recently purchased the gear vr with my note 5. All of the apps work EXCEPT for MINECRAFT. I was able to play it a few times and now it won’t even open. I tried uninstalling it and reinstalling. Nothing. What should I do? I need a refund!

    1. you tried uninstalling the game or the VR software from the phone? It seems like it may be an update issue. I would try to clear the app cache and data. I’ll wipe all game related info and settings so you should be able to start from scratch to see if it works. Uninstalling it doesn’t always reset the settings.

  19. Horrible device. Got two for free with new S7s. Finally tried it out the other night. Hard a difficult time getting the phone in and to stay in. Screen would start playing and then stop. Never got it to work. Popped my phone out and saw that the screen was badly cracked up by the speaker. There goes my brand new phone. Not happy. No point in contacting Verizon since they will replace it with a refurbished phone.

  20. I made your problem so I have an Galaxy 7 Edge and prior to use my phone was working great except when I hook it up it worked fine and then when I took it off the fast charger wouldn’t work after that the VR will not connect to the phone. So I took it back into the T-Mobile store and they did a Exchange so I thought problem solved. Boy was I wrong when I took my new phone home I was having no problems so prior to going to work I hook it up to the VR played with it for about a half an hour took it off went to work. Only to find that it was no longer fast charging again!! This has been horrible! Okay so prior to hooking it up to menu VR it’s the newest model I’ve had the phone for many many months and had absolutely no problems with the best charging they’ve troubleshooted it at the store and it won’t even read a Samsung charger to the wall but it will charge in the car they stated that it’s not even recognizing the charger block…HELP!! At this point I have no intention of even hooking it up to my VR ever again any other problems like this anywhere else for anybody else??

    1. Are you asking to help with the charging or the vr?

      The charging could be a software glitch. it could still think it is connected to the VR. Or it could have messed up the usb port when it was connected to the VR headset.
      I’ve seen phones and power banks destroy wall chargers when the battery level is too low. They charger gets too hot and stops working. The same could apply to the cable.

      Have you tried wireless charging? That would eliminate the cable, cord and usb port on the phone from being bad.

  21. NETWORK ERROR setting up my Gear VR yesterday and only part of the download went through on my Samsung S7 about 1 year old and I got a network area on my WiFi which works off a cable modem/router Netgear N450, Docsis 3.0. I then did a search for possible problems, The main problem seemed to be Facebook being disabled, but that was not the problem, many other single issues were noted but none of them worked either. I then tried my wife’s S7 which is only 2 months old same problem on WiFi. One last try: turned off my WiFi and used Mobile data download. It went right through and everything set up. When complete turned on my WiFi and everything worked fine. Apparently the Router firewall was causing it to not setup properly. Hopefully that will help some frustrated people out there. Good Luck

    1. Thanks, that is very helpful.

      on a slightly related note, I had a similar issue connecting to and downloading Google Play apps on a chromebook. it is something with the way the router blocks things. You can green light the connection if you’re so inclined.

  22. The only problem I have is everytime i try to look at the videos they’re sideways upside down never can see them through my VR headset

  23. Thank you for posting this! I’ve been trying to get my brand new Gear VR to work for about an hour and came across your post, tried your first suggestion, and BAM, it works. I can’t believe all I had to do was remove my stinking phone case – arrggggg! Thanks again!

  24. Just got my new vr gear. I ordered for a Samsung s7. The box says for s7 but when
    I went to hook up the usb is too big for the female port on my phone. do I need to
    return it or what. everything else is in chineze so I cant read instructions. Have you
    come across this before.

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