Category Archives: Smartphones

How to Get the One UI Beta on the S9 SM-G960U/U1 or the S9 Plus SM-G965U/U1 Snapdragon Unlocked US Phones

Though this is a simple process, it can also be tedious based on the various postings I have seen on how to obtain the update either through 1. OTA “Over The Air” which is the preferred way because you will get automatic updates when the updates come out, 2. Using ODIN or 3. Using ADP side load method.

When you have the Snapdragon US unlocked versions SM-G960U, SM-G960U1, SM-G965U, or SM-G965U1 the preferred way to get the update is using the Samsung + app or if you are overseas, its called the Samsung Members app.

As you read through the multiple blogs or step by step instructions, you notice that most of these online postings are either not detailed enough or simply just re postings of inaccurate information from bloggers who have literally ZERO Android or tech experience.  Samsung says and posts that they will only allow 100,000 in the program as they say on most beta releases however, if the beta is successful with few issues, they keep it open.  If you are one of the many people who have tried to get the update OTA, looked everywhere on their Samsung app for the beta signup, did factory resets and many other steps to get enrolled and haven’t been successful, you are probably thinking the beta is full, however, its been over its limit for a week now and that limit doesn’t matter.  Here are the exact steps you will need to do to sign up.

These steps are based on your phones having the installed firmware as noted: “To see what your firmware is updated to, Go to Settings–>About phone–>Software information and look under Baseband version”

S9 Plus SM-G965U1 is: G965U1UEU3ARJ2 or G965U1UES3ARJ6

S9 Plus SM-G965U firmware is: G965USQU3BRJ5 or G965USQU3BRJ6

S9 Plus SM-G960U1 is: G960U1UEU3ARJ2 or G960U1UEU3ARJ6

S9 SM-G960U firmware is G960USQU3BRJ5 or G960USQU3BRJ6


Though, I have seen these methods more successful on phones with firmware G965U1UEU3ARJ2 for the SM-G965U1 version, G965USQU3BRJ5 for the SM-G965U version, G960U1UEU3ARJ2 for the S9 SM-G960U1 version and G960USQU3BRJ5 for the S9 SM-G960U version, I have spoken to a few of my tech friends that actually got the update on their security patched J6 firmware, so if you have the J6 firmware and just cant get the update “OTA” I would use ODIN following the steps below to get your phone back to the stock firmware listed above that were more successful.

Ok, now to the good stuff.  The FIRST thing you want to do before ANYTHING is make sure you are signed in your Samsung account, next and VERY important, check to see if you are an actual BETA user for your Samsung + app or your Samsung Members app.  Being a BETA user on these apps are not the same as being a BETA user for the Samsung One UI program.  What I see most people doing wrong with the update is that they go to their Samsung + or Samsung Members app to see if they get notified of the Samsung One UI Beta program and have not even signed up to be a beta tester on the Samsung + or Samsung Members app first.  Yes, I know, there are a few that feel they didn’t sign up for to be a BETA app user and they still got the update but we will agree to disagree on this. Below is the instructions to do this if you don’t already know how to sign up in the Google Play Store.

**Sign up to beta test apps from within the Google Play Store**

Not all apps offer beta testing but if they do, all you need to do is head on over to its Play Store listing on your Android device. Once you’re there, it doesn’t matter if you have the app installed yet or not. Just scroll down to the very bottom of the listing until you spot a card offering you the opportunity to become a beta tester.

Next, all you need to tap on I’m in and then select the Join button, acknowledging that you know the app is in development and the app might become unstable in future updates. And that’s it! It usually takes several minutes for the enrollment process to take place in the background, but when you’re in, you will begin receiving beta updates whenever they become available. “Important” you will need to wait a minute or two in some cases to get notification to update the current app if already installed or to install the beta if not, “usually” you will see its the beta app as it somewhere on the download description.

**If for some reason you are having issues getting the beta test app, you can download the apk for the Samsung + beta app here, not sure if it works without signing up but you can give it a try: Click here to download the apk. “Samsung+ beta” Once you download the apk, you can try and install it and see if you get a notification to change security for installing unknown apps or do it manually by going to Settings–>Apps–>3 Dot menu (upper right corner)–>Special Access–>Install unknown apps–>Select App**

Once you sign up to be a beta tester on the Samsung + or Samsung Members app and install the beta app version, wait a few minutes, restart your phone and then go to Settings–>Software update–>manually download and not auto install, it will do a check and the new One UI Beta firmware update should be available.

If you don’t see a firmware update, wait a bit longer, you don’t want to rush this because any delayed internet connection, delayed server connection to your phone to verify the settings needed can cause the update not to show up immediately.

If these steps don’t seem to work, you will have to downgrade your firmware to the more successful firmware versions listed previously using ODIN, its not difficult.  You can do this easily by going to this link and following the steps in the post.

Download ODIN modified version, download your firmware, unzip both in their own folder on your desktop.  Make sure your phone is in developer mode just in case by going to Settings–>About phone–>Software information–>and click on Build number till it says developer mode, go back to settings, scroll down to Developer options, enable USB debugging and then right below that, turn off Verify apps over USB.  This isn’t always necessary, but I have found it relaxes your phones security and allows for easier updates.

Remember, make sure your phone is in download mode before trying to flash using ODIN, I see many people trying to flash before putting their phone in download mode and it will not work.

You can download the S9 SM-G960U1 firmware G960U1UEU3ARJ2 here:

You can download the S9 SM-G960U  firmware G960USQU3BRJ5 here:

Once you download and install the older firmware on your phone, restart without restoring old data or data backups for now, start the set up by logging into your google account, then log into your Samsung Account, stop all updates as that will just waste time for now and then start the process I outlined in red above, under “**Sign up to beta test apps from within the Google Play Store**”

This has worked for 90% of the people who follow these steps exactly and is the best way to get into the One UI Beta program and get OTA “Over The Air” updates so you don’t have to flash using ODIN each time a new One UI Beta update comes out.

I hope this helps the many that are plagued with issues trying to get in the One UI Beta program and explains why it wasn’t working before.




How to send an email to SMS or MMS

Although most everyone can access their email these days on their smartphone, there are still times when you would rather send an email message as a text for faster delivery. This works for when you want to email someone who doesn’t have a smartphone, or when you want to send a text from your computer.


If you have a short email that you want to send, but want it delivered to the person’s phone as a text message, you can use the email to SMS gateway system. You just need to know their phone number and service provider (carrier) so you can find the correct gateway address to use in forwarding your message. Here’s how you do it:


How To Send a Short Email as an SMS


  1. Log onto your email account and type out your email as usual on either your smartphone or computer.


  1. In the recipient box, rather than typing in an email address, enter the recipient’s 10-digit phone number.


  1. After you’ve entered the phone number you want to send the email to: “[Insert 10-digit number]”, tack on the correct “@gateway” address at the tail end of it and you are on your way to sending email to text. Just an FYI, not all large messages will go through vis SMS, so you will need to use the MMS gateway. Below is a list of some of the more commonly used service providers (carriers) in the United States along with their gateway addresses.
Carrier SMS gateway domain MMS gateway domain
Alltel [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
AT&T [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
Boost Mobile [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
Cricket Wireless [Insert 10-digit number]
MetroPCS [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
Project Fi [Insert 10-digit number]
Republic Wireless [Insert 10-digital number]
Sprint [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
T-Mobile [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
U.S. Cellular [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
Verizon [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]
Virgin Mobile [Insert 10-digit number] [Insert 10-digit number]

If your email is made up of more than 160 characters, you will need to use the Multimedia Message Service (MMS) to send it. Keep in mind that if the individual you’re messaging doesn’t in fact have Multimedia Messaging on their messaging plan, they won’t be able to get your message. Most carriers do have email to MMS gateway addresses as seen above in the table. So, if your message does have over 160 characters, just use their MMS gateway address rather than their SMS gateway address.




Smartphone Manufacturers Will Do Away With The 3.5mm Jack

Mobile phones will slowly do away with the 3.5mm jack to replace with better tech.

Here are the true benefits of these changes, only engineers usually know and consumers really want the features the changes help with.


  1. Removing the 3.5mm headphone jack allows the phone manufacturer to:
  2. Reduce thickness of the phone, the 3.5mm jack plays a huge roll in this category and consumers want thin phones with larger screen real-estate
  3. More room for a larger battery allowing longer battery life
  4. Better waterproofing, when you have a 3.5mm jack, regardless of your waterproofing, there is not a full proof way of keeping water out of that area and the use of plugs will only make the phone bulkier and requires the phone to be thicker.
  5. Last but not least, it allows more space for better cameras which are a growing consumer demand.

There will always be the less expensive or off brand phone you can find with the 3.5mm jack but most of your top tech phones will do away with it completely. Obviously, change will be hard for some, but it’s necessary to make room for the future keeping up with consumer’s wants and needs.


by Joe Lovrek, News to Watch

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