iOS 16 Won't Revive the Battery Icon for Every iPhone

Apple confirms its battery-monitoring feature won't make it to these four iPhones.

David Anders Senior Writer
David Anders is a senior writer for CNET covering broadband providers, smart home devices and security products. Prior to joining CNET, David built his industry expertise writing for the broadband marketplace Allconnect. In his 5 plus years covering broadband, David's work has been referenced by a variety of sources including ArcGIS, DIRECTV and more. David is from and currently resides in the Charlotte area with his wife, son and two cats.
Expertise Broadband providers, Home internet, Security Cameras
David Anders
2 min read
iPhone 14 with a grid of app icons on the screen

The battery life icon returns to the status bar on select iPhones with iOS16.

James Martin/CNET

Apple's iOS 16 offers an impressive set of new features, but it marks the return of an old, much-missed feature, too: the battery life icon on the status bar. Most iPhones, including the new iPhone 14, sport the default feature, as do all iPads once you download the update. However, not all iPhones support the new battery icon feature, even if your phone is compatible with iOS 16.

According to an Apple support page published last Monday, the iPhone XR, iPhone 11, iPhone 12 Mini and iPhone 13 Mini models don't display the battery icon in the status bar. Instead, owners of these devices will have to continue checking battery status as they always have: by swiping down to the Control Center.

No word as to why those specific iPhones were left out. Apple didn't respond to a request for comment on whether the battery icon will be available on the devices in the future. 

Read more: iOS 16 Cheat Sheet: Your Complete Guide to the iPhone Update

Other exciting iOS 16 features, such as editing and unsending messages, customizable lock screens and verification that your AirPods are indeed AirPods, appear to be available on the iPhones that go left out of the battery icon update. 

The battery life display is set to default with the iOS 16 update, but if for some reason it's not appearing on your iPhone (and you don't have one of the models listed above), you can activate it under Settings > Battery, then turn on Battery Percentage.