My OG Pixel had a light but it was so small you could barely see it from an arms length so I guess I'm not missing something I never had.
I remember it when I had an S6, but don't remember finding it that helpful.
It would be nice if the good Lock would without having to use the AOD feature or at least work when the screen is off. Makes no sense to have the notification light up only with the screen is on...
Use the good lock app that is official from Samsung and it helps with edge lighting as an alternative for LED notifications. You can do many things including making the camera cutout light up for your notifications. It may be implemented later on with an app software or something.
Samsung needs to put out update asap. Very annoying, stick with older model till they resolve this. Handle On Call for hospitals and it was handy. Now I constantly need to check for notices or turn on volume.