Mysterious warning icons on your iPhone explained – and when you need to apologize

EVER wondered what the icons on your iPhone screen mean?

Located at the top of the screen next to the selfie camera, the icons are largely harmless – but can warn you that you’re being stalked or eavesdropped by apps.

Ever wondered what the icons at the top of your iPhone screen mean?


Ever wondered what the icons at the top of your iPhone screen mean?Credit: Getty


Some icons, such as the battery indicator and cell signal, are fairly easy to understand.

For the uninitiated, they show how much strength you have left and how receptive you are, respectively.

However, there are dozens of other, lesser-known symbols that flag things that you may not be aware of.

Take, for example, the location services indicator – a triangle-like shape facing northeast.

It indicates that your device’s GPS is activated, such as when an app is providing turn-by-turn directions.

It’s a handy icon because it lets you know if you’ve forgotten to turn on your navigation service.


It can also warn you that your location is being tracked by a nefarious app without your knowledge.

Another useful warning is the recently introduced “warning dot” that will alert you whenever your microphone or camera is activated.

Following the release of iOS 14 in 2020, a green dot now appears in the upper-right corner of the iPhone screen when the camera is activated.

It lights up orange if the microphone is actively listening to you.

The update means that if an app sneaks up on you, you’ll know about it.

Other symbols you may not be aware of are not important for your safety but still provide a useful service.

For example, portrait orientation lock indicator – tells you you’ve locked the screen so it can’t switch from portrait to landscape when the device is rotated.

The headphones icon, unsurprisingly, indicates that you’re connected to a pair of headphones, while the alarm clock means you’ve set an alarm in the Clock app.

You can read the full list of iPhone icons and their meanings on Apple website.



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