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What does it mean when the connectivity icons in the status bar go white/gray?

I've been searching google for this and I haven't been able to find a clear answer for this. Some say it's "insecure connection to Google servers", others say it's only blue when it's syncing etc.

The idea is that connecting to two different WiFi routers I get different icons. One shows blue, the other grey. The only difference between them is that the one that shows grey uses a certificate to authenticate, while the blue one uses a password, like any regular router.

So what's up?


2 Answers 2


It is the internet state indicator - grey means that your internet connection cannot reach Google's test server, and the blue icon means that you have a strong connection with Google's test server.

If it is grey, you may have issues accessing some internet services on your device, blue should work fine.

This is available on all types of data connections.

  • Thank you, Liam. So it's not a security issue or anything like that, probably the firewall, right?
    – Francisc
    Commented Jan 15, 2013 at 20:15
  • @LiamW AFAIK it's not the "test server", but indicating that your data sync connection (for contacts, calendar, etc.) to Google's servers is established and stable, as Coder101 pointed out in his answer.
    – Izzy
    Commented Jan 20, 2013 at 1:40

Its whether or not you've currently got a connection to Google's servers for sync services such as syncing contacts. Gray means you don't but blue means you do.

  • Thank you. It's odd though, I can still use Gmail, Play Store etc even when the icon is Grey.
    – Francisc
    Commented Jan 15, 2013 at 20:13
  • What does "good connection" mean though?
    – Francisc
    Commented Jan 15, 2013 at 20:14
  • I've edited the answer Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 16:38

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