How to Make Calls on Your Samsung Galaxy S8

By Bill Hughes

After your Samsung Galaxy S8 phone is on and you’re connected to your cellular carrier, you can make a phone call. It all starts from the Home screen. Along the bottom of the screen, above the Device Function keys, are five icons, which are the primary shortcuts. The primary shortcuts on your phone may differ slightly, but in this case, from left to right, they are

• Phone
• Messages
• Internet
• Play Store
• Camera

galaxys8-shortcuts
The primary shortcuts on the Home screen.

To make a call, follow these steps:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Phone icon.

    galaxys8-phone

    You will see a screen like the one shown here. This screen shows any calls you have made or received, such as the one from your carrier to confirm that you phone has been set up correctly.

    galaxys8-main-screen
    The Main screen for the phone.
  2. Tap the Dial Pad icon.

    This icon is a green circle with little white dots that symbolize the touch pad on a regular landline phone.
  3. Tap the telephone number you want to call.

    The Keypad screen appears. This looks like a full-sized version of a touch pad on a regular landline phone. (If you have not made or received any calls at all, tapping the Phone icon takes you right to the Keypad screen.)

    galaxys8-keypad
    Dial the number from the Keypad screen.

    Don’t be alarmed if you don’t hear a dial tone. Smartphones don’t connect to a network until after you dial your number and tap Send. At this point, a dial tone would be pointless.

    For long distance calls while in the United States, you don’t need to dial 1 before the area code — just dial the area code and then the seven-digit phone number. Similarly, you can include the 1 and the area code for local calls. On the other hand, if you’re traveling internationally, you need to include the 1 — and be prepared for international roaming charges!

  4. Tap the green phone button at the bottom of the screen to place the call.

    The screen changes to the screen shown here. You have a chance to verify you dialed the person you intended.

    galaxys8-dialing-screen
    Dialing screen.

    Within a few seconds, you should hear the phone ringing at the other end or a busy signal. From then on, it is like a regular phone call.

  5. When you’re done with your call, tap the red phone button at the bottom of the screen.

    The call is disconnected.

If the other party answers the phone, you have a few options available to you by tapping on the correct icon/hyperlink on the screen, including

  • Put the call on hold
  • Add another call to have a three-way conversation
  • Increase the volume
  • Switch on a Bluetooth device
  • Turn on the phone’s speaker
  • Bring up the keypad to enter numbers
  • Mute the microphone on the phone

You can do any or all of these, or you can just enjoy talking on the phone.

If the call doesn’t go through, either the cellular coverage where you are is insufficient, or your phone got switched to Airplane mode, which shuts off all the radios in the phone. (It’s possible, of course, that your cellular carrier let you out the door without having set you up for service, but that’s pretty unlikely!)

Check the notification section at the top of the screen. If there are no connection-strength bars, try moving to another location. If you see a small airplane silhouette, bring down the notification screen and tap the plane icon to turn off Airplane mode.

If you pull down the notification screen and you don’t see the green silhouette of an airplane, scroll the green or gray icons to the left. This icon may be off the page. Alternatively, tap the icon with the boxes in the upper-right corner, and you will see all the notification icons.