Are you an Android user? Are you an Android developer, and did you change your application target SDK to 29? Is the latest Android OS update reflecting dark mode apps? If yes, we would love to know your experience. Android’s dark mode has been one of the most requested features for almost every app. There are many applications such as Twitter that have long offered a dark mode, which replaced the blinding white background with subdued blue. Twitter for Android and iOS allows this dark mode to be triggered automatically based on sunset.

Google surprises with something new with each version update of Android. One of the critical features/enhancements in Android Q (10.0) is the way apps displayed to the user.  This not only brings a cleaner look to the app but also game-changing UI experience to end-users. The dark mode will offer a range of benefits to the user, but before we get there, let’s understand what’s dark mode.

What’s Android Dark Mode?

Android’s dark mode is a theme based on blacks and dark color and offers better UI experience to end-users on the mobile devices. It offers features such as privacy first, live caption, depth information from photos and gesture navigation to name a few. The users can supplement the dark quick settings by configuring apps to their respective dark modes. Not all apps offer such options, and it’s highly dependent on the type of app and its developer.  

Light Mode vs Dark Mode

Dark mode in any app shows a black background with white or colored text rather than the usual white background with black text. The dark mode will be virtually universal on smartphones and will help in saving battery life. However, the dark mode is only possible on OLED displays and not LCD screens.

Android Dark Mode

Learn How to Enable Dark Mode in Your Android Device

The dark theme applies to both the Android system UI and apps running on the device. There are quick three ways to enable Dark theme in Android 10 (API level 29) and higher:

  • Use the system setting (Settings -> Display -> Theme) to enable the dark theme

Android Dark Mode

  • Use the quick settings tile to switch themes from the notification tray (once enabled)
  • On pixel devices, select the battery saver mode that allows dark theme at the same time. Other OEMs may or may not support this behavior.

How to Implement it in Android?

First and foremost, the thing is to set the Android target SDK of the app to Android Q (29). There are two ways to achieve in Android using style.xml.

  • Using Support Project

<style name=”AppTheme” parent=”Theme.AppCompat.DayNight”>

  • Using Material Component

<style name=”AppTheme” parent=”Theme.MaterialComponents.DayNight”>

The output of App by using the above styles in light mode v/s dark mode.

Android Dark Mode

Below is the list of options available to set up theme while using an app.

  • Light theme
  • Dark theme
  • Set by battery saver (Default option for Android P or before)
  • System default (Default option for Android Q)

AppCompatDelegate.setDefaultNightMode(/**Your Mode**/)

Force app to be available only in dark mode:

  • Please add below property to view in the layout


  • Programmatically,


Benefits Offered by Dark Mode

  • Ability to reduce power usage to a significant amount (depending on the device’s technology)
  • Improves visibility for the users with low vision and those who are sensitive to bright light.
  • Makes it easier for anyone to use a device in a low-light environment


If the user is looking to reduce eye strain without limiting the usage, then make the best use of the dark mode using an android device. This mode can help doesn’t strain your eyes, saves a lot of battery on your mobile, and offers an enjoyable experience. Do share your experience with us.


Sr. Technical Lead