March 5, 2021

Android 12 could make your phone’s UI and apps more colorful

An extensive, new theming system on Android 12 could even recolor apps.

Android 11 accent colors on Pixel 3

Credit: Adamya Sharma / Android Authority
  • Android 12 could get a new, in-depth theming system.
  • It’ll reportedly allow users to choose a primary color and an accent color.
  • It could even help recolor apps.

The first Android 12 developer preview seems right on the horizon. We’ve seen a spate of rumors about the new software lately, and folks over at 9to5Google are responsible for a lot of them. Fresh information uncovered by the publication suggests that Android 12 could get an extensive, new theming system.

Currently, switching between light and dark themes is the only major visual tweak you can make to change the appearance of the UI and apps on your Android phone. Pixel phones go a step further and offer settings to customize accent colors, but even those are limited to places like the Quick Settings area.

With Android 12, Google is reportedly focussing on an in-depth theming system. It will allow you to select a primary color and an accent color that’ll not only recolor the UI extensively but also third-party apps that support the functionality.

The primary color should reflect in the background of the Quick Settings dropdown and the notifications shade. 9to5Google has created a rough mockup of what this could look like.

android 12 theming mockup green

Credit: 9to5Google

The best part is that even apps on your phone could gain the primary and accent colors you chose. That is if developers integrate Android 12’s new theming system in their apps. In comparison, apps on Android 11 can only change from dark to light as per your phone’s settings.

Moreover, Android 12 should also be able to change themes in accordance with your wallpaper. So when you change your wallpaper, the system could automatically pick matching theme colors to recolor the UI and apps.

All of that sounds great, but Android 12 is not here yet and not all of the early features make it to the final version. So we’ll have to wait and see if Google is serious about this theming system and what app developers make of it.