Google might not allow Samsung to change the Galaxy Note 7’s battery indicator, but that’s alright


Earlier today, Samsung confirmed rumors that they would look to identify new Galaxy Note 7 units a couple of different ways. The primary tell would be a green-colored battery status indicator on their smartphones compared to the white icons we get now.


The problem with that particular approach, as ArsTechnica reminds us, is that they may be encroaching rules of Google’s compatibility document which mandates licensed devices to use white-colored status indicators at the system level. The reason for that particular rule is simple: Googe wants to ensure apps which change the status bar’s color don’t inadvertently make icons unreadable.

And now some are pointing out how horrible this is for Samsung and how they’re breaking the rules and being the bad guy here. Yes, Samsung proposed this solution, and yes, it does seem to break Google’s current rules.

However, what we don’t know is whether Samsung made some sort of agreement with Google to allow this subset of devices to have a green-colored battery indicator. The extreme nature of the current issue at hand certainly does warrant special consideration in many areas and on both sides of the problem, so it’s not outside the realm of possibility.

But even if Google doesn’t allow it, this should eventually turn out to be a non-issue. Samsung still has other areas within the OS to change the battery indicator to green. It won’t be as readily visible as the status indicator, but it’ll be there. And there will also be the black-colored square on the devices’ boxes, too.


Just make sure you do your homework to know how to identify the safe version of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 before you go home with it.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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