How To: Enable Android 9.0 Pie's New Manual Dark Theme on Your Google Pixel

Enable Android 9.0 Pie's New Manual Dark Theme on Your Google Pixel

Android 9.0 Pie is now available to install on Google's own Pixel devices and a select few other phones. In the new release, there's a fairly hidden setting that lets you enable a system-wide dark theme that changes the look of your Quick Settings panel and other menus.

It's similar to the automatic system theme that was introduced in Android 8.1 Oreo, except you no longer have to use a black or dark wallpaper to trigger it. Instead, you can manually choose a light theme, dark theme, or the existing automatic theme.

To try it out, make sure you're running the latest version of Android Pie, then head to your phone's main Settings menu and tap "Display." From there, hit "Advanced" to expand several more options. At the bottom of these is "Device" theme — tap this, then choose either the "Automatic," "Light," or "Dark" theme.

The Settings menu won't change colors, nor will any of your apps. But there are still plenty of places where the dark theme applies. Check them out below!

Quick Settings

Google Now

App Drawer

Volume Menu

Power Menu

Have you found any other menus that are affected by the new dark theme setting in Android 9.0? If so, let us know in the comment section below.

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Cover image and screenshots by Dallas Thomas/Gadget Hacks


I couldn't get the settings menu to go dark. Had to use substratum.

Never mind I figured what was causing my notification shade to stay dark. To anyone slightly interested I had to turn off night mode off from the developers settings.

My call log and phone list just turned to Dark theme by itself and I don't know how to get it to go back.

I have looked in Settings both on devise and phone list.

On phone settings display it tells me it's in Dark mode with the toggle to the right but it is not blue. It can't be changed.

I'm having the same problem - not able to get out of Dark Mode. I don't have a Developer setting on my phone. I've searched for it. Don't have Night Mode either. Help!

I don't like the "dark" theme on the Gmail widget. And if I flip it back to the lighter theme the text is just grey, unreadable. A horrible job with the UI since there is not enough customization. And to think Google has been at this for a while, but every release they seem to screw something up that works great when trying to give something not everyone wants. And I know I'm in the minority on this one.

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