The system-wide dark theme was one of the headlining features of Android 10 when it was released in 2019. The exact implementation varied by device, but on Google's Pixel theme, the dark theme was completely black. Google appears to be tweaking this, as the first Android 12 beta changes the primary color to a blueish tint.

Android 12 changes the dark theme on Pixel devices to use a very dark shade of blue — #171c21, to be exact — instead of regular black. The colors for text and highlights appear to be mostly unchanged.

Android 12 Beta 1

Android 11

The update might upset fans of 'AMOLED dark' themes, which often point to potential battery life savings (since dark pixels on OLED screens are powered off), but most people are unlikely to notice any change at all. Perhaps Google will allow multiple dark theme options in future Android 12 betas, using the enhanced theming engine.

For more about the Android 12 launch, check out our announcement post detailing what's new here. If you want to install the developer preview on your own device, find out how in our Android 12 download guide.