Android 4.3 update for Samsung Galaxy S4 Google Play edition prevents apps from writing to microSD card

Android 4.3 update for Samsung Galaxy S4 Google Play edition prevents apps from writing to microSD card
The Google Play edition of the Samsung Galaxy S4 has just received its update to Android 4.3. But along with the update comes a problem that is affecting users' handsets. It seems that for some reason, the update to Android 4.3 brings with it a bug that prevents apps from writing to a microSD card. Any attempt to do so results in an error message. The reason for this is that the apps are not seen as in the right group to be able to write on the card. Hopefully, this will soon be corrected.

In the meantime, you can go to the Google Play Store and install ES File Explorer which happens to be in the right group for writing to and reading from a microSD card. If your phone is rooted, you can get into the files and make the appropriate fix yourself directly on the phone, or from your PC. In basic terms, you are telling your phone that it is ok to give permission to the media-rw group to write to the microSD card. Once you get into the /system/etc/permissions/platform.xml file, you need to focus on line 71. Check the photo below. All you are doing is adding that permission.

If you don't want to root your phone or you're worried about bricking it, you can always stick to ES File Explorer. And hopefully, a fix will be sent out soon.

source: AndroidCentral

Related phones

Galaxy S4
  • Display 5.0" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 2 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 600, Quad-core, 1900 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2600 mAh(17h 3G talk time)



1. darkkjedii

Posts: 31760; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

That sucks. Apps to sd has been great for android, 4.3.1 should fix it.

2. Shatter

Posts: 2036; Member since: May 29, 2013

Android stopped supporting app installs to SD a long time ago. Only an experienced user who knows how to root can move the entire app to external storage. This sucks for people who have lots of: pictures, videos or music.

11. yowanvista

Posts: 341; Member since: Sep 20, 2011

Contrary to popular belief App 2 SD has NOT been removed in the AOSP tree. It's actually up to the manufacturer to decide whether they want to include the fearure upon building their ROM. Just because Google doesn't use it due to Nexus devices not having any external storage doesn't mean that the feature has been removed from the main repository. Stop spreading FUD and go learn the facts.

6. tech2

Posts: 3487; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

The whole idea why Samsung gave the option for Apps to SD in GS4 with TuchWiz was to find a solution to 8-9 GB of Tuchwiz on 16GB model fiasco. Since GS4 GPE has barely 1GB of system files there is no need to lament if that feature is gone.

16. Shatter

Posts: 2036; Member since: May 29, 2013

Its 2013 not 2008, 64GB should be the base storage for any phone. Storage is the biggest rip off in the phone market. The bigger stock iphone cost $100 more but the price for them to use 64GB of storage is only a couple of $ more than 32GB to make.

18. jonshipman

Posts: 1; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

This isn't about Apps2SD. This is about writing to the SD Card. Pocketcast can't download podcasts to the sdcard anymore as an example.

3. Gaurav008

Posts: 328; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

Only Galaxy S4 supports writing apps in the sd card at present. I think it was sent in an update due to the low internal memory in S4. Installing apps in phone memory means better perfomance, lower crashes. So unless you want to show off your internal memory of the phone, install all your apps in the phone memory and all your media files on sd card. :)

4. lhtbinh1909

Posts: 94; Member since: Apr 02, 2013

not again

5. gazmatic

Posts: 822; Member since: Sep 06, 2012

is there simply no beta testing done or is android too popular to even try

7. rodkurt

Posts: 128; Member since: Nov 29, 2012

i think this is only applicable if your device has 32gb or 64gb internal

8. JMartin22

Posts: 2414; Member since: Apr 30, 2013

A Google-ploy no doubt. They want people backing up their data to their cloud services. Only, that's not really viable, given data caps administered by telecommunication service providers.

17. Shatter

Posts: 2036; Member since: May 29, 2013

Tmobile is the only carrier in the US that you can get good speeds on with real unlimited. Every other "unlimited" plan throttles you after usually 3-5GB. LTE showed up in my City about a month and its faster than ATT and Verizon is here. Last month I tested it and racked up about 200GB of data and I was still getting LTE speeds. Paying half the price of ATT every month and its better service, I don't understand why people still use them.

9. thelegend6657 unregistered

Another innovation bought to you by Samsung Electronics ®

10. belovedson

Posts: 1061; Member since: Nov 30, 2010

michael heller please explain to me how google was trying to do the right thing for consumers?! most android users want micro sd and samsung has single handedly prevented google from screwing over consumers with sealed batteries and limited 16 and 32gb ripoffs!!!

12. gazmatic

Posts: 822; Member since: Sep 06, 2012

i dont understan this whole fascination with sd cards 32gb internal should be the NEW MINIMUM i stopped buying phones with less than 32gb internal since the n97 YOU DONT NEED AN SD CARD WITH 32GB INTERNAL i dont understand how people can settle for 16, 8 or even 4gb internal just because of an sd card on my lumia 920 i get 29gb free space 13gb is used for apps, 9.6gb is used for media and files, 1.6gb for the system and i am still left with 4.7gb of FREE SPACE (with 866mb of "other") who needs more than thatZ 32GB SHOULD BE THE MINIMUM, sd cards are so 2007!2874&v=3

13. g2a5b0e unregistered

Cool story, bro, but not everyone's situation is the same as yours. Some people don't need anymore than 8GB internal & don't even use an SD card.

14. synthetic_llama

Posts: 26; Member since: Jan 06, 2013

VV He's right. I have about 18GBS of music. I'm not adapting to the cloud just yet.

15. sswain

Posts: 56; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

32GB min internal + 64GB min sd card (damn bastards not produced any 128GB microSD cards yet...) :(

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