Know Your iPhone Status Bar Icons

I just had a call from my friend asking what does the circle icon just after the signal bar indicator means. Actually, I never seen that icon before so I told her that this means that she is connected to the internet which provides almost “zero” data transfer. After doing my research, the zero icon actually means GPRS connectivity is active, somehow my guess is correct. GPRS connection is really slow that you might think that there’s no internet connection. As an iPhone user we need get ourselves familiar with the status bar icons, Apple already have them listed  on this page, but it’s quite outdated. Check out the updated iOS status bar icons below for your reference.

  • Orange coloured airplane or “Airplane mode” indicates that airplane mode is active and you use the phone to access the  internet, use bluetooth or wi-fi. This settings turns off wi-fi, blue tooth, GPS and GSM radios making your phone completely safe to use on a plane. You can also activate airplane mode to save battery and use your phone as a regular iPod.
  • Clock icon or “alarm” means that an alarm is set and active. Alarm is set on the clock application on your ios device.
  • Battery icon shows battery status, indicates battery life remaining. A lightning icon over it means that your ios device is charging.
  • Bluetooth icon shows the status of your bluetooth radio and its connection to your bluetooth device. Gray icon means bluetooth is active, but there’s no device connected, while blue icon indicates that theres a connection, no icon means bluetooth is inactive.
  • Blue phone icon with arrow pointing to the right or “call forwarding” icon shows that call forwarding is set up and active.
  • Signal bars or “Cell Signal” shows the current signal strength, more bars means stronger the signal. It will be replaced with “No Service” in cases your phone cant get a signal.
  • Capital E icon or “EDGE” indicates that your carriers EDGE network is available and you can connect to the internet, although it also means that you’re connected to a slow internet connection.
  • “O”, circle icon or “GPRS/1xRT” indicates that your carriers GPRS or 1xRT network is available and you can connect to the internet with the SLOWEST connectivity available.
  • Arrow head icon pointing up-right or “Location Service” tells that an app is currently using location service, and your GPS location is transmitted to the app. Which could also means depending on the app, that your privacy is compromised. You can deactivate location service per application on your phones Settings under General settings.
  • Pad lock icon or “Lock” simply means your phone is locked and you need a key to open it. Nope, you just need to unlock it by pressing the home button and sliding the “unlock slide”, in some cases you need a passcode to unlock your phone.
  • Circular asterisk looking status symbol or “Network Activity” indicates that over-the-air syncing or other network activity is active such as uploading and downloading data. It appears when an app is accessing the internet i.e. mail is loading emails, or safari is loading pages.
  • “Play” symbol simply means that a song or other audio is playing on the iPad app.
  • A padlock inside a rotation arrow or “portrait orientation lock” icon indicates that the screen is locked in portrait orientation. You can deactivate is by double tapping the home button, sliding the processes bar to the right and tapping the orientation unlock icon.
  • Phone put down on several dots icon or “TTY” icon shows that the phone is set to work with a TTY machine (teletype) used by deaf and hard of hearing people to communicate by typing and reading text.
  • 3G icon or “UMTS/EV-DO” means that your carriers 3G service is available and you can connect to the internet using the fastest network available, although internet speed varies on the 3G signal strength indicated by the signal bars beside it.
  • VPN icon inside a blue square or “VPN” means you’re connected via a Virtual Private Network. VPN Guide can be found on this page.
  • Pie icon or “Wi-Fi” means that your iOS is connected to the internet via a local wi-fi.


On early iPhone models GPRS is symbolized by a blue square icon, while the EDGE connectivity is represented by a square with white capital “E” inside it.



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