There are nearly two dozen iPhone symbols that show up in the iPhone status bar in iOS 10, many of which don’t clearly explain what they mean.
We commonly explain what the iPhone Symbols mean on iOS 10 but this guide explains what each of these symbols means in one place, so it is easier to understand what the iPhone is trying to tell you with the symbols and icons on the status bar mean.
Apple updates the iPhone symbols slightly in each new version of the iPhone software, but they should be the same across the various iPhone models from the iPhone 6 to the iPhone 7 Plus. Some of the symbols will also look the same on the iPad.
You will always see some of the iPhone symbols, while others will only show up at certain times when you need to know about an event or action that is taking place on the iPhone.
Common iPhone Symbols
The following iPhone symbols are in the status bar almost all of the time, so it is a good idea to know exactly what they mean. The basics will stay the same, but some parts may change depending on the type of connection you have.
Starting on the left side, here are what the iPhone symbols mean on iOS 10.
- Five Dots – Signal Strength. More dots means a better signal.
- Carrier Name – Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint etc, will show here.
- Type of Connection – LTE, 4G, 3G, E, GPRS, 1x – these are ranked by speed with LTE the fastest and GPRS/1x the slowest.
- Time – The current time. In most cases, this will auto update based on location.
- Small Arrow – Location Services. This indicates that an app is using your location.
- B symbol – Bluetooth icon. This is grayed out when there are no Bluetooth devices connected and white when a device is connected.
- % icon and Battery – A visual and percentage indicator of battery life.
iPhone Symbols and Icons in iOS 10
In addition to these symbols that you may see on a day to day basis, there are other iPhone symbols and icons in the status bar which can alert you to other activities and actions as well as provide you with more information.
- Personal Hotspot – Shows the personal hotspot is active and how many devices are connected.
- Bluetooth Battery Life – Shows the battery life of a connected Bluetooth device.
- Airplane Mode – Indicates the iPhone is ready for use in an airplane.
- WiFi indicator – Shows the signal strength of WiFi network, more black bars is better.
- Do Not Disturb – Shows that Do Not Disturb is turned on and blocking notifications
- Orientation Lock – Shows that the phone will not auto switch to landscape orientation when moved.
- Battery Charging Symbol – Shows battery is charging.
- VPN Icon – Shows the iPhone is connected to the Internet through a VPN or Virtual Private Network
- Alarm Clock – Indicates an alarm clock is set.
- Syncing Icon – Indicates the iPhone is syncing with iTunes.
- Network Activity – Indicates network activity like a web page loading or app accessing network.
There are a few other less common iPhone symbols that may appear in the iPhone status bar including one for call forwarding and one for when the iPhone is connected to a TTY compatible device. The icons below show what this looks like, from the iPhone support manual.
These cover the major iPhone symbols and icons in iOS 10 and should help you understand what is going on with your iPhone without going to settings or hunting around.
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