In a surprise update, Apple has added battery percentage on iPhone models with a notch through iOS 16 beta 5. Apple first added a notch on iPhone X, but only shows the battery graphic to indicate the remaining charge level. To view the percentage, users had to swipe down on the control center.
Users attributed this to Apple’s focus on form over function, which has been evident in many products throughout the company’s history. Others said that Apple wanted to reduce the anxiety that users get when they keep looking at the battery percentage. However, as the company rolled out this update, it took the Internet by storm, as it was a glaring omission before.
Battery percentage on iPhone
When you update to iOS 16 beta 5, you can go to Settings > Battery and enable the toggle that says “Battery Percentage”. Instantly, you will see the percentage appear within the battery graphic on the top right.
Strangely, the battery graphic turns black, instead of the standard green color, with the percentage text appearing white. In some apps, it turns white, with the percentage text appearing black. When the battery is low, it turns red. When you put your iPhone in low power mode, it turns yellow., It would have been better if Apple had kept it green with white text inside it, so that users can just glance and tell whether they need to charge their device or not.
When you charge your iPhone, it shows a small charging indicator, which shows that Apple somehow found enough space in the display alongside the percentage indicator, even though the notch had reduced the display real estate for the status bar.
In typical Apple fashion, this feature is not available on all iPhone models with a notch. If you have an iPhone XR, iPhone 11, iPhone 12 mini, or iPhone 13 mini, you do not get the option to enable the status bar. This is confusing as the limitation does not seem to be related to either screen size or the latest chip.
Since iOS 16 is in beta, it is possible that Apple might add support for all devices in the next update.
iOS 16 will release this fall for all compatible iPhone models