The battery icon is one of the most glanced-at icons on your iPhone. By default, it just shows a plain battery that empties out as your phone’s charge depletes. But did you know you can actually customize the battery icon to add a numeric battery percentage indicator?
Adding a battery percentage to the icon is useful for getting a more precise idea of how much juice you have left before you’ll need to charge up. In this article, we’ll walk through everything you need to know to change the battery icon on your iPhone.
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An Overview of the Battery Icon
Before jumping into the customization steps, let’s briefly run through what the battery icon is and how it works on iPhones.
What the Battery Icon Tells You
The battery icon lives in the top right corner of your iPhone screen in the status bar. Without any customization, here’s what the icon indicates:
- Full battery: Shows a completely filled-in battery icon.
- Partially drained: The battery icon empties out as your phone’s battery level decreases.
- Low battery: The battery icon turns red when your iPhone’s charge drops below 20%.
- Charging: You’ll see a lightning bolt inside the battery when your phone is plugged in and charging.
So at a glance, the icon lets you see a rough estimate of current charge level. But there are no specifics on the exact percentage level – and that’s where adding a percentage indicator comes in handy!
How Battery Life is Reported
Behind the scenes, your iPhone is continually monitoring battery performance and charge status. Metrics tracked include:
- Current capacity vs maximum capacity
- Cycle count (number of charge/discharge cycles)
Using these parameters, iOS calculates both the real-time battery level and maximum battery capacity over time. The battery percentage you see is based on the full charge capacity as it changes over your phone’s lifespan.
Now let’s look at how to make that battery percentage visible right on your battery icon.
Enabling Battery Percentage
Displaying battery percentage alongside the battery icon only takes a couple taps in your iPhone settings:
- Open the Settings app.
- Scroll down and tap Battery.
- Enable Battery Percentage by sliding the toggle to the on (green) position.
That’s all there is to it! Now instead of just seeing a battery icon, you’ll also see the specific percentage of battery life remaining.
Here’s a look at how the battery icon looks with percentage enabled:
With the numerical percentage visible, you have precise visibility into how much battery is left before needing to charge up.
Customizing Battery Percentage Options
Once you’ve turned on battery percentage in Settings, you also have a couple options to customize how the percentage is displayed.
Showing Percentage Inside or Outside the Icon
By default, the percentage is shown inside. But you can also choose to display it on the right side of the icon instead.
To switch to outside display:
- Go back into Settings > Battery
- Tap Battery Percentage
- Select Next to Battery Icon
This positions the percentage on the right side of the icon for easier visibility.
Changing Percentage Font and Size
You can use the iOS Accessibility settings to adjust font style and size for the battery percentage:
- Go to Settings > Accessibility
- Scroll down and tap Larger Text
- Adjust the text size slider as desired
- Toggle Bold Text on or off
With those Accessibility settings, you can really customize exactly how the battery percentage displays to best fit your needs and preferences.
Should You Display Battery Percentage?
Showing battery percentage in the icon is mostly personal preference. Here are some of the pros and cons to help decide if you should enable it:
- See an exact, real-time percentage instead of estimate
- Easier to anticipate when you’ll need to charge up
- More granular than Low Power Mode indicator
- Icon takes up more space in status bar
- Percentage may fluctuate often (which some find annoying)
- Low Power mode also indicates when charge is low
In most cases, the percentage indicator provides useful extra metrics for tracking battery level. But feel free to disable it if find it distracting or unnecessary for your needs.
Customizing Other Battery Options
Aside from the battery icon itself, there are a few other battery-related customizations you can make.
Turn Low Power Mode On Automatically
Low Power Mode triggers automatic energy saving adjustments when your battery drops below 20% (or lower if you customize it). To have this kick in automatically:
- Go to Settings > Battery
- Enable Low Power Mode
- Toggle on Turn On Automatically
Now your iPhone will automatically trigger Low Power Mode once it hits 20% battery or lower to extend battery life.
Optimize Battery Charging
The Optimize Battery Charging feature uses machine learning to optimize charging habits and extend battery lifespan. To enable:
- Go to Settings > Battery > Battery Health
- Slide on the switch for Optimized Battery Charging
This will monitor charging patterns and delay fully charging past 80% when possible to reduce wear.
Get Creative with Custom Icon Packs
If you want to get really creative, some custom icon packs on the App Store let you change up the battery icon and other status bar icons. Just note that icon packs require iOS 14 or later.
Some top options include:
With icon packs, you can really put your own creative spin on status bar icons like the battery icon.
Keeping Your iPhone Powered Up
Getting the most runtime per charge is key to keeping your iPhone powered all day for calls, web browsing, photos, and apps. Along with customizing and related settings covered here, be sure to follow best practices like avoiding hot temps, enabling Auto-Brightness, closing background apps, and more.
We hope this guide gives you everything needed to start customizing how your iPhone battery icon looks and functions. Turning on the percentage indicator delivers much more runtime transparency at a glance. Feel free to tweak to your preferences, try out some custom icon packs, and implement battery optimizations using the tips provided here.