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Re: grey signal bars?
Yup, this is all it means. It was introduced with Gingerbread, but most manufacturers removed this feature in their UIs. Blue means that you are connected to Google services. Grey means that you are not. Usually when you switch from 4G to 3G, or vice versa, your signal bars will go grey for a few moments. You will probably still have data, but it takes a few seconds for the phone to establish the connection with Google services once again.
Originally Posted by nkd
However, I find it more useful in low signal areas. There are a few select areas around town where I will have 0-1 bars of 3G, or so the phone thinks (both Nexus and previous phones - Thunderbolt and OG Droid), but in reality no data at all is going through. It's times like these when the grey bars are useful, as they help you recognize that there is a data problem there and that you shouldn't be relying on notifications or streaming music or anything while in those areas, even though you have a few bars of signal strength indicated.