We had a chance to go hands-on with some Samsung test devices running the company’s new One UI – the latest in a long line of TouchWiz rebrands – and the feature likely to generate the most attention is almost certainly the new “Night theme” option. Basically, night theme sets nearly every stock app, along with the launcher and lockscreen, into an all-blacked-out look that Android users have been begging for in devices for years. My initial take is that Samsung’s done this pretty well, and essentially every stock app on the test devices had a dark theme applied when the setting was enabled. Here’s a quick look at some of those apps in a gallery.
Some apps like Smart Switch and the theme store weren’t yet sporting dark modes, but I imagine that’s just a result of this still being a very early beta, and those apps likely being handled by other development teams outside the core UX group. If there’s one thing that can be said about Samsung, it’s that it’s capable of throwing all its weight and resources behind a design initiative, and that probably bodes well for adoption of the night theme on basically every Samsung-published app.
As to whether third parties will take this as the moment to finally start taking dark theme development seriously? We can’t know for sure, but with Samsung being the single most important player in the high-end Android smartphone space, this is a company that we know can shape the priorities of its partners – and competitors. And that probably means good things – namely, more dark mode in apps – for all of us down the road.