Google’s updated design language, called Material You, makes the interface design a much more personalized experience for Android phones, with UI elements extracting their colors from your wallpaper. But the theme can not be limited to the nuance of the notification, the colors of the accents and the background of the application. There is growing evidence that this can extend to application icons – if developers add support for it.
As reported by application developers kdrag0n and Kieron Quinn, there is a hidden flag that allows you to thematize several application icons in Android 12 Beta 2, corresponding to the colors extracted from your wallpaper. The list is currently exclusive to most pre-installed Google applications, safe for a few such as Messages, Phone and Photos.
Loans: Kieron Quinn (left), kdrag0n (middle and right).
In the examples above, you can see that the applications received backgrounds with accent color and black iconography in light mode while inverted in dark mode. This makes the icons monochrome, creating a beautiful and understated design that is almost the complete opposite of Google’s recent push for candy-colored app icons. For example, I don’t mind a home screen like this.
According to the evidence gathered by Quinn, it seems that the list of compatible applications is currently firmly coded in Pixel Launcher. Although support may initially be limited to these pre-installed Google applications, it appears that the company is getting everything in place to extend third-party application support. Developer Dylan Russell has already implemented thematic support for a pre-release version of its Inware information application.
Soo, I did something again 🙂
The icon can be based on these colors. pic.twitter.com/mRYXWYMOek
– Dylan Russell (@evowizz) May 20, 2021
It is still in the air whether Google will really cope with these drastic changes in the design of application icons. From everything we know, the company may want to use these themed icons in places other than the launch pad, such as the touch notification or the latter’s screen.
For more information on Android 12, check out our current series coverage here or check our regularly updated change log and check back later. If you want to install the developer preview on your own device, find out how in our Android 12 download guide.