Android 4.4 includes hidden battery percentage status bar readout
There are plenty of ways for an Android user to get detailed info on the battery life remaining on his or her phone – besides stand-alone apps, we’ve seen home screen widgets, OEM skins, and custom ROMs all deliver their own takes on displaying battery info at a glance. Throughout all this, though, the standard status bar battery indicator has remained extremely simply, offering only a graphical indication of charge. Well, now with the release of Android 4.4 it looks like Google might finally be getting with the program and picking up on a good idea that’s been around for a while, starting to add the framework for displaying a numerical reading of remaining capacity in the status bar.
It’s not activated by default, but send a couple commands to your KitKat phone over ADB (or just run an app designed to twiddle the right bits directly on your handset), and you’ll see a little percentage indication overlaid upon the graphical representation of charge.
Problem is, right now that leads to a white-on-white clash, making the numbers unreadable until the battery really starts dwindling down. Obviously, we expect to see that corrected and the whole thing a bit more refined by the time this becomes a more public feature, but it’s still good to learn that Google’s working on this at all.