Apple is working on this year’s big iOS 16 update, which is expected to roll out to all (supported) iPhones within the next few months. The latest beta added a small, but helpful, improvement.
Apple just released iOS 16 Beta 5 to people using the in-progress release on their iPhones, which adds the ability to always display the current battery percentage in the status bar on more devices. The percentage appears inside the battery icon, after it is enabled from Settings > Battery > Battery Percentage. 9to5Mac reports it was enabled by default for some people on the beta.
Apple already allowed iPads and iPhones without notches (like the new iPhone SE) to show the percentage in the status bar, but the option has been missing on other models, since the notch takes up more space. Some custom builds of Android have also placed battery information in the icon (as far back as old versions of the CyanogenMod custom ROM), and most Android phones can display the percentage next to the battery icon.
However, the feature isn’t available on all models. MacRumors reports the following iPhones with notches have the option to show battery percentage in the status bar:
- iPhone 13 Pro Max
- iPhone 13 Pro
- iPhone 13
- iPhone 12 Pro Max
- iPhone 12 Pro
- iPhone 12
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- iPhone 11 Pro
- iPhone XS Max
- iPhone XS
- iPhone X
That leaves out the regular iPhone 11, iPhone 12 Mini, and iPhone 13 Mini. It’s not clear why those models are excluded — ironically, maintaining an updated battery percentage at all times could have a minor impact on battery life. Mini-series iPhones already don’t have great battery life, but that shouldn’t be an issue for the iPhone 11.
Apple could expand the feature to more models in the future, but we don’t know for sure. The final release of iOS 16 is expected to arrive sometime this fall.