During its time as a developer preview, we saw quite a few features pop up in Android Nougat, later to be dumped. Among those included a dark UI mode, something fans have been wanting for quite some time. Unfortunately, it didn’t make the cut. Another feature which we were glad to see what “Night Mode.” With a simple toggle, users could enable a blue-light filter onscreen to make their devices better for use at night.
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This feature, similar to Night Shift on iOS, tints the screen red to filter out blue wavelength light. Research has suggested that this light can negatively affect your sleep, so this feature cancels it out to a certain extent.
Google had previously explained that the feature was removed due to performance concerns, at least in the developer preview. In our limited testing, this doesn’t seem to be the case on the final Nougat release, but seeing that it wasn’t included at first, we can only assume Google still has some kinks to iron out. That said, if you’re willing to put up with it, the new app “Night Mode Enabler” can easily bring back the feature with just a few quick taps.
Developer Michael Evans and his colleagues dug through the final source code for Nougat and discovered a snippet which refers to Night Mode and how it can be enabled.
Long story short, if you pass the right extras to this activity, and you’ll get access to the Night Mode settings (as well as the infamous Quick Tile!). Fortunately for us, this is pretty trivial to accomplish with
adb -d shell am start --ez show_night_mode true com.android.systemui/.tuner.TunerActivity, but not everyone who wants this feature is familiar with
adb. So I published an app to the Play Store that does exactly that – click one button, and get access to those settings! You can find the app on the Play Store here.
There’s no guarantee that Google won’t remove Night Mode is a future update, but it’s just as likely that we could see it fully implemented in a later release. Regardless, you can easily enable it now through a quick download on Google Play.