We’re deep into 2019 and we’re still having issues with Android apps not supporting Dark or Night modes despite millions of devices now using AMOLED displays. Here’s a list of our favorite Android apps that support the dark side…
It’s not that omitting a Dark or Night mode is a dealbreaker, it’s just a sensible way to make your application usable at all times — especially late into the evening.
Having a blazingly bright display when you just want to read in bed or check a text is all the more jarring if you don’t have the option to tone down the colors and standard white color scheme. Dark themes are en vogue too for a number of other reasons. They can help devices save battery as AMOLED displays can literally turn off pixels — essentially making them black — therefore saving battery life.
With Samsung, Google and more now all offering or at least working to provide native system-level Dark and Night modes, you’ll want more than just your stock applications to have an eye-friendly companion. We’ll stick to the basics with this first wave, everyday options that cover the main use-case areas for most smartphone owners out there..
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There really aren’t a lot of third-party browsers that genuinely offer any sort of Dark mode but the Chrome-like Kiwi Browser luckily is one such option. Flipping the switch turns the entire web dark and much more palatable too. It’s great for AMOLED displays as it will hopefully help improve your overall battery life and experience.
Now we can’t quite change that most web pages are black but the lightweight Opera Browser has one of the best ways to combat that with a slightly different night mode and the ability to dim web pages so that they aren’t quite as blinding.
That said, you probably won’t want the brightness all the way down during the day as it’s really difficult to actually see what is going on. Opera also happens to be a really solid and lightweight alternative to Chrome on your Android phone.
One for the SMS users out there who don’t want to use either their stock messaging app or Google Messages — whatever that happens to be. Textra adds tons of neat little features that make it a solid alternative to your current SMS app.
Textra is actually a really neat replacement for Google Messages, with tons of other optimization features and extras. You’re also able to choose timed light and night modes or opt for a proper black mode.
Solid File Explorer
For me, the best file management application on Android full-stop. I paid for his some time ago but still use it almost daily. Solid includes a dark and full blackout mode which is way better than a slightly-dark gray option that some apps tend to offer.
You’re able to change the accents and themes too, giving you some further controls over the look and feel. I tend to opt for the auto-night mode though, as it doesn’t bother me too much during the day if the interface is brightly lit. It’s worth noting that the dark modes are only available via an in-app purchase.
Arguably the biggest and most popular Android keyboard out there bar Google’s own Gboard and with good reason. SwiftKey was one of the standout early third-party keyboard options in the early days of Android.
To me, the themes are infinitely better than those found on many other stock keyboard applications. I’m not going to delve into the specifics of why SwiftKey is a solid option but as far as dark theme keyboards go, it’s one of the best.
I use Feedly daily and having a dedicated night mode is a godsend if you want collated and curated news feeds. It makes reading and finding new content that bit more comfortable — especially at night.
Definitely one for the big-time news readers out there or those that want arguably the best RRS reader out there.
Boost for Reddit
I’m going to apologize for being a fan of the official Reddit app — which has its own Night mode actually — but I’ve been missing out on Boost for Reddit after being told about the application by my colleague Kyle Bradshaw. It’s actually amazing the level of control you have over the themes, and therefore, dark mode.
You can adjust a ton more than just background color too. You can literally black out the entire app if you prefer. That makes this a must Reddit client for a ton of people out there.
Another very simple but very effective dark mode but this time for a weather application. Klara has a solitary night theme that switches colors and it doesn’t detract from the detailed weather information you want to know.
It’s not a pure black mode but one of the better free weather applications that have adopted a darkened mode.
We’d showcased Inware before, as it’s an app from our very own Dylan Roussel. That said, the application is great because of how smooth, simple and accurate it is at gathering internal device hardware information. It really is one of the top Android apps with a dedicated dark or night mode too.
You can switch between a few levels of a darkened theme to suit your own personal preferences. The pure dark mode and accents look great on an AMOLED display. Arguably Inware is a very specific application and not for everyone but still a superb for device hardware tracking.
I have been using Pocket Casts for a long, long time now to the point where I almost can’t use any other podcast app. That said, although it’s very good, I can’t say I am a particularly huge fan of the redesign.
I am a huge fan of the dark mode though. There are two to choose from, so even if you don’t have a device with an OLED display, you can still benefit from the less eye-scorching design. Pocket Casts is not a free application though, setting you back a few dollars — it is arguably the best outright podcast app on iOS or Android though.
This isn’t intended to be the most comprehensive list of third-party applications on the Google Play Store but it is a solid mixture of apps to get your fill of. If you haven’t already adopted the dark or night mode on your device or aren’t currently able to, then maybe try installing a launcher like Nova.
We also want to hear your own personal favorite third-party applications. The Google Play Store is a big place, we couldn’t possibly list every single high-quality app that has an exceptional night or dark mode. Let us know in the comments section below.
More on Android:
- Skype screen sharing now out of beta on iOS and Android
- Aptoide calls on Google to ‘Play Fair’ w/ 3rd-party app stores on Android
- Google Play apps must now specify ‘target age range’ to boost child safety
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