What do the Android status bar symbols mean?

The icons at the top of our screens have changed a lot over time, from their design to their meaning. As new features are added to our smartphones, more and more icons appear.

Let’s explore some of the most common Android status bar symbols, so you never have to question your phone’s status again.

What is the Android Status Bar?

The status bar on Android is the bar of icons at the top of your screen. The upper right corner is dedicated to your device’s main status, while the left is used for app notifications.


Swiping down from the top of your screen, you’ll find access to a selection of recognizable tools like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, mobile data, and perhaps location and power saving. You can also easily customize this quick settings panel.

Press one of them to activate or deactivate the function. When activated, an icon representing the tool should be displayed next to the battery icon in the upper right corner of your screen. The top left corner of your screen is reserved for notifications, so icons that appear here are usually for an app, like Instagram or a missed phone call.

Try turning Wi-Fi on and off on your device, and you’ll find that your status bar icon appears and disappears appropriately. The status bar will allow you to quickly determine the status of your device. Having trouble loading a webpage? A quick glance at your status bar might tell you that you have no mobile service or Wi-Fi.

What Do Android Phone Status Bar Symbols Mean

Now that we’ve covered the location and purpose of the Android status bar, let’s look at the common icons you’ll find in the upper right corner of your screen. You’ll definitely recognize a few of them, but there’s still a surprising amount of information to know about these little icons.

Battery icons

Perhaps the most recognized and easily interpreted icons are the battery icons. These include the typical battery status, which may be accompanied by a percentage. A simpler version of this will only show a properly filled battery. There is also the Battery charging icon, which is displayed when your phone is charging.

There are more that you will commonly see:

  • Battery saver mode is represented by a battery containing the recycling logo.
  • There is also a unique icon for a low batterywhich usually means it’s between fifteen and five percent – it’s the battery with an exclamation mark or a battery with the remaining power colored red.

Network and data icons

The network bars and Wireless the icons represent your mobile and Wi-Fi network connections respectively. These icons display a rough approximation of either signal strength with variations.

The number of filled bars can be used to gauge your signal strength, but some carriers also display the network speed next to this icon. It can be a little LTE, 4GWhere 5G hovering next to the bars icon; however, these symbols can also stand alone.

There are other icons that correspond to the data:

  • A set of vertical arrows pointing in opposite directions represents your mobile data. When enabled, you can take advantage of your service provider’s mobile network, along with the strength and speed icons we just discussed.
  • The horizontal arrows represent the device’s ability to make calls over LTE. It’s called VoLTEor Voice over LTE.
  • A circle with a plus inside means you can or have already activated saving data on your Android device. It just means that your device reduces data usage as much as possible.

Calls, volume and alarms

There are several icons that focus on sound and vibration. The most obvious of these is the call icon, which varies between a Call in progress and one missed call. There is also a single icon for devices that allow Wi-Fi enabled callswhich is as simple as a combination of the Wi-Fi and phone icons.

  • If you have mute your microphone during a call, you may find a crossed-out microphone in your status bar.
  • A speaker the icon represents your notification status:
    • A speaker with sound waves indicates that you have its on.
    • A crossed-out loudspeaker represents a phone on mutebut adding a zigzag line indicates vibrate mode.
  • A small alarm clock on your status bar means you have a active alarm on your phone.

Uploads and downloads

A line with an arrow, pointing up or down the line, notifies you of an active upload or download.

  • An up arrow means you have downloaded something, like a PDF on your Google Drive.
  • A down arrow means a To downloadit might just be downloading an image from Google.
  • A download complete may be represented by a tick on a line rather than an arrow.

Login icons

Some icons are used to alert you to different connection modes, whether physical or Bluetooth.

  • The B icon appears whenever your device is connected to another via Bluetooth.
  • The USB symbol, which may appear in the upper left corner rather than the right corner, appears whenever your phone is connected to another device through a USB connection.
  • A box with the Wi-Fi symbol, which is usually found in a corner of the box, will appear whenever you stream from your phone to another device on your network. A simple example would be casting a YouTube video from your phone to your living room TV.
  • An airplane icon means you have no connection. This represents airplane mode, which disables your device’s ability to send and receive signals. When active, the icon usually replaces Wi-Fi bars and icons.

Other icons

There are a host of other icons that you will see in your status bar from time to time.

A common icon that often confuses users is the N icon. This tells you that NFCor Near Field Communication, is active on your device.

This is the technology that allows you to share data between two nearby phones, or connect your phone to the payment portal to use your phone as a debit card. We’ve detailed the process for using NFC and Google Pay to make payments from your phone.

  • The upside-down teardrop with a hole represents a kind of location service, such as location sharing or a GPS application. The Google Maps app will use this icon when active.
  • The crescent moon icon may not appear in your status bar when active, but it’s worth noting. This tool, dark mode, is used to dim the overall interface of your phone; this applies to application interfaces and system trays. YouTube, for example, will turn dark gray rather than white.
  • Focus mode is used to block notifications from a selection of apps, allowing you to work without being distracted by the apps you choose. This icon usually consists of two circles, one inside the other.
  • Another variant of this is Do not disturbwhich blocks all notifications. This icon is a filled circle containing a horizontal dash.

On top of that, you’ll see app-specific icons whenever you receive notifications. These can relate to an email in the Gmail app, incoming tweets or Instagram messages, an indicator that you’ve taken a screenshot, and many more.

Android status bar symbols

Now that you can recognize some of the most common Android status bar icons, your phone can easily tell you its various statuses with just a glance at the top corners of the screen.

It’s important to maintain the well-being of your Android device, especially as it ages. One thing to keep in mind as your device ages is battery health. Fortunately, we can help you collect and review data about your Android device’s battery.

Comments are closed.