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S21 giving no audible notifications


Well-Known Member
Thread starter
Jun 3, 2011
I've asked this question in various forms in a munber of fora. No one has been able to answer. Hope I have better luck here.
Samsung S21 / watch3
For over a year I've been having a LOT of problems with recceiving no audible notifications for a number of apps. For now, let's use gmail. I'll go days with no audible notifications when receiving email. The notification will popup on my watch (sometimes with vibration, sometime not) and, for reasons I don't understand, I'll infrequently receive an email AND get an audible notification, after which, back to nothing. Same is true of Life360, Ring, Life Reminders, SMS, and a few others. All of them give audible notifications only rarely.
I've tried updating/reinstalling apps, rebooting the phone and watch separately and together, turning off the watch for a day, . . . nothing helps.
At times Ring and gmail will not only give no audible notification, but give a popup on my watch 10-15 minutes after the trigger. Not great when someone rings my doorbell.
But let's go back to Life360. I get no audible notifications when a family member arrives at a specified destination, but every time the vehicle stops, I get a driving summary WITH audible notification. Summary, but no destination. In addition, Life360 app shows the drive and the correct time arrived at a destination, so it gets the time/location correct. I get a popup. Just no audible notification.
Ring shows the correct time of a trigger, I get the popup without audible notification, but when the notification is delayed, the app shows the correct trigger time. So, like Life360, the app recognizes the trigger time and often gets to my watch, but no audible notification.
Phone volume is up. I know? the apps are set correctly, because Settings are right, the trigger times are recorded, a popup appears, and sometimes I receive the audible notification. I've been to the phone's Settings>Notifications>App Notifications too many times. Turned off/on notifications of all affected apps one at a time and all at once. Turned off notifications/rebooted/turned on notifications. I've tried to 'time' the silent notifications in an effort to see if there was a hidden schedule somewhere affecting volume. Nope, lack of volume is nearly 24hr/day with the occasional 'surprise' notification. And some apps (e.g., Microsoft To Do) ALWAYS give audible notifications.
I hope someone can diagnosis this.
Yes, as reset does delete everything. Sometimes when there is some strange glitch caused by some bad bit of data heaven-knows-where it can be the only practical way to clear it, but it is a pain and you do need to make sure you have backups of everything important first.

You've checked that your Do Not Disturb settings haven't gone rogue? I know that's kinda obvious, and it should be visible somewhere if it's active, but you've not mentioned it and it is something that can mute notifications but where some apps can be excluded from it (which is one of the things you describe).
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I'll check. Just a reminder, using Life360. I get no no notifications when a family member enters a designated location, but I get the drive summary when the vehicle is turned off. I conclude DND for that app has to be off or I wouldn't get an audible notification of the Summary. No?
FWIW, one more thing I thought of. At times, when I turn on my phone, I get an audible and visual notification of emails, even if the email arrived an hour ago. What's magic that turning on the phone triggers email notifications?
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There are apps that copy one phone to another, but that won't let you reset the phone then copy stuff back to the same phone because once you reset the phone there will be nothing left to copy back. Hence you need to back up to either cloud storage or another personal device.

Samsung have some PC software called "Smart Switch" which can back up the phone to a computer. There's an FAQ on it here. Note however that it can't back up everything (as it describes in the "what can I tranfer?" section), so I'd advise taking a second backup of important stuff (e.g. copy what you can to a computer over USB, or to your favourite cloud storage, in addition). I can't give any additional advice on this app because I've never used it myself.

In principle some stuff can be backed-up with a Google account (probably a Samsung account too), but I didn't find that reliable 10 years ago (when I was playing with custom ROMs and so resetting every few weeks) and while it may have changed I never got into the habit of trusting it. Maybe someone else can advise on that stuff.
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