The V.Smile TV learning system is one of Vtech's premier products. There are some problems that users encounter, however--some due to user error, while others are manufacturing glitches. Troubleshooting is always a trial-and-error process that sometimes ends in successful play, and other times ends with a phone call to the manufacturer.
If the power light is on, but there is no picture, it is most likely a problem with the television connection. Check the colored wires from the V.Smile to make sure that all of them are plugged into the matching color on the television. If so, check your television input settings. Many televisions have multiple input settings, so make sure that you are using the correct one. On some televisions, the input settings are found on the remote control, while on others they are below channel 2.
If the power light is on and everything is correctly connected and set, the system may need to be reset. Usually, this problem is accompanied by an unresponsive "off" button. Using a ballpoint pen, press the reset button under the console while the power is connected. You can also reset by disconnecting all power sources, including batteries, from the system. Reconnect the power and the system should start up properly.
Other Common Issues
Improper connections between the television and the V.Smile are most likely the cause of sound problems. The red cord is the audio cord, so unplug this cord and plug it back in.
When the joystick does not work, the system may just need to reboot to accept the joystick. Unplug the joystick, turn off the system, plug the joystick back in, and then restart the system.
Many consumers have reported problems with the V.Smile power supply. If you experience trouble starting up the system and none of the troubleshooting above seems to help, you may have a power supply problem. VTech has not released any official word on why this problem occurs, so it is usually left up to you to try to fix this error. There are a number of anecdotal ways consumers have come up with to solve this problem. If you experience this problem, you can give these suggestions a try.
On some systems, switching from a plug-in power supply to battery power will solve the problem. Others report that jiggling the video game while starting may prompt start-up. One of the more complicated methods is to pull the power cord out before removing a smartridge from the system. Put in a new smartridge, plug it back in, press the reset button and then turn on the system.
If you have more trouble with your V.Smile System, call technical support at VTech. Make sure you have the name and model number of your V.Smile ready. Contact VTech on their website (see Resources) or call (800) 521-2010 in the U.S. or (800) 267-7377 in Canada.
Josie Myers has been a freelance writer and tutor since 2008. A mother of three, she was a pre-kindergarten teacher for seven years, is a Pennsylvania-certified tree tender and served as director of parks in her local municipality. Myers holds a Bachelor of Arts in music and business from Mansfield University and a Master of Arts in English from West Chester University.