If you’re not at your first Android experience, then you know that the download mode is closely linked with update operations. However, if you haven’t heard about this mode until now, or if you just want to learn more about it, you are in the right place. This dedicated step by step guide will teach you everything that must be known about the download mode and the ways in which this special environment can be reached and used on the new Samsung Galaxy S9+.
Download mode is specific for Samsung branded devices. On other OEM this mode is dubbed as fastboot or bootloader mode. However, these terms are describing and defining one particular environment that can be accessed on the Android system; a mode that puts your Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus into a special state in which the Android core system can be accessed and modified. By default, the download mode runs independently from the Android mode, so that’s why it cannot be used while your phone is running normally.
For entering and using download mode you will in fact have to follow and apply a special reboot sequence – no, the mode cannot be entered through regular settings either. Now, this dedicated reboot process will end the Android mode and enable the download environment, situation during which your Galaxy S9+ cannot be used anymore. Instead, you can access its Android core system in order to initiate update / downgrade operations – shortly, programs like Odin can recognize your smartphone only if its system is running in download mode.
Therefore, if you want to manually update or downgrade your Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, you first have to enter download mode. Besides the update aspect, the very same process can be helpful when you are dealing with software related issues – by manually installing the Android OS you can restore your handset back to its factory mode, which means that the same operation will automatically fix software related issues such as boot loops, lags, hangs, screen freeze, battery drain, heating issues, signal strength problems, battery drain, total blackouts and more.
Additionally, in some situations (mostly when Odin has to be used), the download mode might be required for tweaking procedures. For example, that will happen when you will try to install a custom recovery image (such as TWRP recovery) on your smartphone.
Now, entering and using download mode is an official operation, supported by Samsung and which can be anytime reached on the Galaxy S9 Plus. Shortly, you can complete the steps mentioned below without using complex or risky tools and you can successfully follow these guidelines without worrying that the Samsung KNOX flag can be tripped. So, the warranty won’t get lost and, additionally, you will be able to access this environment even if your device is rooted, running on an unlocked bootloader, powered by a custom ROM firmware or installed with a custom recovery image.
A backup isn’t needed as your data won’t get wiped out while you try to enter the download mode. However, during update operations that can be related with this mode, your data might get corrupted or erased. So, bottom line, a general backup should be ensured just for securing your personal data, info, accounts and files (like contacts, call logs, texts, internet settings, EFS folder, images, videos, audio files, market apps, IMEI / NVRAM data and so on). Don’t worry, most of these files can be saved easily by using Samsung’s own cloud storage platforms or by syncing your data with your Google Account. Other files can be backed up by using dedicated backup and restore apps from Google Play, but in that case make sure you get already tested platforms.
Just before resuming the rebooting methods that are explained and detailed below, verify how much power is there left on your smartphone. It is important to charge your Galaxy S9+ before doing anything else, especially if the power left is lower than 50%. When the power is low, your device can get switched off right while you are completing the steps from this guide and in that particular situations you can end up in experiencing different software related problems on your phone.
Of course, remember that these lines are compatible only with the latest flagship released by Samsung. Don’t use these guidelines on other similar smartphones as you will risk in soft bricking your devices.
How to Enter Download Mode on Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus
- This process can be initiated only if your phone is turned off – so, before doing anything else press and hold the Power button until the shut down operation is completed; or press the Power key once and choose ‘power off’.
- Next, press and also hold (simultaneously) the Power, Volume Down and Bixby buttons.
- When the first change on your smartphone appears, release these keys.
- Choose OK by pressing the Volume Up button.
- That should be all; the download mode environment is reached.
- So, you can now connect your Galaxy S9 Plus with your computer and resume the update process if that’s what you want to do.
This second solution can be applied if a computer can be used. On that computer your Galaxy S9+ drivers must be set up – you can download the drivers through Samsung KIES. On the same computer you will have to execute a dedicated adb command. So, you must first install Android SDK: learn how to do that by using this tutorial if Windows is used, or this guide if MAC OS X / Linux is used instead. Since a connection between your device will be needed, on your phone you need to access Developer Options (from Menu - > Settings) and check the USB Debugging feature. Note: for enabling Developer Options, go to About Phone and tap repeatedly on Built Number – tap until the ‘you are a developer’ message appears. Then, follow:
- On your computer access the Android SDK folder.
- From that location open a command prompt window.
- For opening cmd: press and hold the Shift keyboard key and while doing that right-click on any blank space; then from the list that’s displayed choose ‘open command prompt window here’.
- In the meanwhile, power on your smartphone.
- Connect your device with your computer with the help of the USB cable.
- Then, return to your computer.
- In the cmd window type ‘adb reboot download’ and press Enter.
- Now, download mode should be automatically rebooted on your Samsung Galaxy S9+.
- That should be all.
A more intuitive method is the one that uses a third party app from Google Play. Even though this solution is the easiest one that can be used, for being able to apply it you will have to make sure that root access is gained on your Samsung Galaxy S9+. If root is enabled, then you can already use different apps that can automatically take you through download mode. Quick Boot is one example of such app – download the tool from Google Play and wait while it’s installed on your phone; then run the app and follow on-screen apps and choose to enter the desired mode.
And that’s how you can choose to reboot your Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus into download mode. As you could see, there are different ways in which this environment can be accessed on your phone, so choose the solution that you prefer the most. Also, don’t forget about us and tell us how everything turned out for you – you can share your observations, your thoughts and your problems by using the comments field from below; if issues are involved, we will try to help you as soon as possible.