One of the highlights of Android 12 is the new Material You dynamic theme engine, which can pull colours from users’ wallpaper and implement them into system and app UI elements.
Dubbed ‘Monet,’ the system currently works on Pixel phones. That could change in the future, however — several Android phone manufacturers now appear in Google’s Material Components library.
This is interesting. The source code for Monet (Android 12's wallpaper-based theme system) will be released with Android 12L, but based on this code change for the Material Components library, it looks like a bunch of OEMs are implementing dynamic color support themselves. https://t.co/Oufh9zxDnZ pic.twitter.com/9obGYbbMDC
— Mishaal Rahman (@MishaalRahman) November 11, 2021
Mishaal Rahman, former editor-in-chief at XDA Developers and now the senior technical editor at Esper, spotted the list and posted the information on Twitter. In short, code included in the Material Components library lists manufacturers that support dynamic colour. You can read the full list below:
- Tecno Mobile
- HMD Global (Nokia)
It’s also worth noting, as Android Police points out, that the core software behind extracting colour from the wallpaper and the appearance model are already part of the Android Open Source Project (AOSP), while the colour palette generation algorithm is Pixel exclusive. That’s set to change with Android 12L, since Google is expected to push that code to AOSP.
Unfortunately, it’s possible the above manufacturers could implement their own versions of dynamic theming, particularly the palette generation portion, designed specifically for their Android skins. Android Police notes that Samsung likely already went this route. The company supports dynamic colour theming in the One UI 4 beta, but it’s probably a proprietary solution since the company doesn’t appear in the above list. Likewise, Oppo has its own dynamic colour implementation in ColorOS 12.
Hopefully these brand-specific takes on dynamic colour theming properly leverage the Material Components library since third-party apps reply on it for the colour extraction. If not, colour theming could be limited to the system UI of each manufacturer’s skin if app developers don’t manually add support for each one.