Google Photos dark mode is popping up for users on Android Pie

What you need to know

  • A dark theme for Google Photos is showing up for some users on Android Pie.
  • The theme is enabled depending on your global system theme and cannot be changed independently.
  • It is a server-side change, meaning you'll have to wait for it to roll out to your device.

You won't have to wait for Android Q to get the dark theme for Google Photos. Some users on Reddit have been reporting the dark theme appearing on their phones running Android Pie.

So far, it has been spotted on devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus, OnePlus 7 Pro, and OnePlus 6T.

Unfortunately, it hasn't rolled out widespread yet and it appears to be a server-side change. Also, unlike Google Keep and Google Calendar which both recently received dark themes, Google Photos does not include a toggle switch in the settings to enable it.

Instead, it appears to follow your system-wide theme — meaning you'll have to have a dark theme enabled system-wide in order to see it show up inside of Google Photos.

While that's not ideal, if you happen to run your phone in dark mode all the time like myself, then hopefully you'll see the change soon. I know I'm still waiting for it to hit my phone.

The new dark theme, like most of Google's dark themes, is more of a dark grey than true black, but it's still much easier on the eyes than the blinding white UI we've become accustomed to.

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Jason England
  • Whew, thanks. This was freaking me out this morning :-). It is really odd and new. I generally love dark themes, but for some reason it looks very odd in Photos. I guess I use Photos so much that the white is ingrained into my brain. I would like the ability to turn it off inside the app though, without disabling Dark mode on the whole phone. Oh well. Glad they have it anyway.
  • I checked Google photos on my Nokia 8.1 and don't have the dark mode yet.
  • Just opened Photos to check and yeah, it looks nice. It's very Google that there is literally no continuity in how dark mode is turned on in each app though.
  • I have the S9+ and have installed a dark theme from the Galaxy Theme store. Night mode is not enabled on the my phone. So with having a Galaxy theme installed will Google Photos show the dark theme or do I need to use the default theme with the night mode enabled? Thanks.
  • Unfortunately it's a bit broken. My oneplus 7 pro is using the light theme and Google photos is dark. It feels very off