Resetting a device is always a tall order for non-tech people. Several mistake it for a hard reset, which deletes all the data and brings it back to the factory settings, which is why many devices (including Samsung phones and tablets) brand it as ‘Factory reset’. So, while we are on the topic of simplifying resets for people, we might as well dive in how to reset a Samsung tablet.
Let’s start by explaining what a reset actually is. As the word implies, a reset is done to undo any or all changes done to a device; whether these are files that have been downloaded, applications or if the settings have been tweaked, a reset is the primary way to get rid of it all in one go, rather than tackle them all one by one.
Which is why, as far as buying a second-hand phone or tablet goes, resetting the device is the first thing recommended to do after bringing the device home. So, if you have recently purchased a used device or have simply got one and are trying to start and use it from fresh, here’s how to reset a Samsung tablet.
How to Reset a Samsung Tablet?
While the procedure remains the same, there are actually different kinds of resets on a Samsung tablet. We will go through each and describe what effect all of them carry on the device, its content and its memory.
Samsung phones and tablets contain four different types of reset options, and each carry different effects. These are listed below,
- Reset settings
- Reset network settings
- Reset accessibility settings
- Factory data reset (also known as a ‘Hard reset’ in some older Samsung tablets)
These resets all provide different sorts of cleaning or resetting effects. Let’s take a closer look at them and ways of how to reset a Samsung tablet.
Also Read: How to Hide Apps on Samsung Devices
On a Samsung tablet, if you have changed quite a bit or have bought the tablet second hand, you might want to start with this ‘Reset settings’ option. As the name implies, this option only applies to the settings of the device, including your language preferences, saved data used for Google’s account information or anything that might’ve been changed in the settings.
This reset option for Samsung tablet will ensure that the settings section of the tablet will be like factory-new; as you would’ve had it if you’d gotten it fresh and out of the box. The good thing about this reset is that while it permanent and brings the settings to a bone-stock condition, nothing very significant changes if the reset is accidental and was not intended.
For this reset, you start with the settings section of your Samsung tablet (denoted by a grey gear icon). Once in it, scroll down to the ‘General Management’ section of Settings, which contains several sub-menus, including that of Reset.
Tap on it and select ‘Reset’ at the very bottom, above the ‘Looking for something else’ banner. Select the first Reset option titled ‘Reset settings’, which will prompt the Samsung tablet to explain what you are about to do.
As mentioned beforehand, this type of option only resets the settings. The tablet will itself inform you of what ‘Reset settings’ can do. For instance, any customizations that you’ve made to the device, alarm ringtones or other notifications settings will be reverted. Your personal data will remain intact and safe.
Simply click the blue ‘Reset settings’ button and the tablet will prompt you to put in your password or verify through your fingerprint or iris (if you have registered them on the device). Once it has authenticated that, it will reset all the Settings and the phone will be reverted to its original, factory settings.
Reset Network Settings:
This option resets all of your networking preferences, saved Wi-Fi or hotspot passwords or any other alterations you might’ve done with the networking of the phone. This reset is also very much forgiving when it comes to accidental resets.
Unless you’re at a place where you can’t ask for the Wi-Fi password or it takes too long to connect to the Bluetooth speakers and you’re king of in hurry, ‘Reset network settings’ is not a permanent or serious reset option that could alter dramatically the look and operating of your phone.
To perform this reset, simply access Settings, and scroll down to ‘General Management’ section, tapping on the ‘Reset’ option. From that sub-menu, you’ll be given four choices, and the second one is ‘Reset network settings’.
Tap on it and it will ask you to confirm and put in your password or use biometrics (if you have used any) to confirm that the actual user of this device is intending to reset it. Tap on ‘Reset network settings’ and voila! Your phone’s network settings are now stock.
Reset Accessibility Settings:
This one is the least-used and the most uncommon one and subsequently, does not carry any damage or loss of data if done accidentally. It is usually only used if the previous owner was a bit differently-abled and required special tools or options to navigate around the phone (like screen magnifier, voice-over or screen reader). If not, you hardly need to reset accessibility settings.
However, if you do decide to do so, just follow the same instructions up to scrolling to the four reset options in ‘Reset’. Select the third option titled ‘Reset accessibility settings’ and it will display the settings that will change once the reset has occurred.
While your own personal keyboard settings or font size preference will not be affected, any alterations to the display or keyboard or any assists (assistants) will be turned off. Simply enter your password or verify through biometrics once the phone prompts you to do so and click reset. Your accessibility settings will be reset and your phone’s accessibility section will be brand new.
Factory Data Reset:
Unless you don’t want to part ways with your data or anything else on your phone, you don’t want to perform a ‘Factory data reset’.
However, in the event that you have bought a second-hand Samsung tablet and want to feel how it would have looked and experienced when it was fresh out of the box, you might consider factory resetting it. Similarly, if there is no data on the tablet’s own internal storage, then you won’t lose anything.
Bear in mind that a factory reset is a permanent option. If any data which was on the local memory and wasn’t backed up on a cloud or your SD card (which will not be affected by the factory reset), you will lose it permanently since the device is essentially turning itself into a blank slate and will operate and run just like it was out of the factory.
To factory reset the phone, simply navigate to ‘Reset’ in the Settings of your Samsung tablet and tap on the last option, which states ‘Factory data reset’. Once you tap on it, the tablet will display which accounts you are signed in with on the device (which will all be deleted) and what other data will be erased from the phone’s memory (including music, pictures, downloaded files or any others apps downloaded from the Play Store).
If you have a cloud backup or have files on the SD card, you don’t need to worry about data being lost and can go ahead and provide the password and fingerprint verification for the tablet to go ahead and wipe itself clean.
Alternative to ‘General Management’ Option
If you don’t want to do this and would prefer some other way, simply attempt the hard reset, which goes like this,
Turn your Samsung tablet off.
- Once its off, hold the Power button and the Volume up rocker simultaneously.
- Keep pressing until it goes to ‘System Recovery’ screen.
- Using the volume rocker switches (Volume up for Up, Volume down for Down), navigate to ‘Wipe data/ factory reset’ and press the Power button to confirm.
- Once the reset has been done, simply select ‘Reboot system now’ and the device will boot up.
This is called a ‘hard reset’ and is opposed to the software menu resets which have been described beforehand.