This is our first look at Android 12’s wallpaper-based theming system
Before the release of Android 12 Developer Preview 1 earlier this week, we learned that Google is working on a new theming system that can recolor supported third-party applications. This enhanced theming system takes the foundations of the RRO and OMS APIs introduced in previous versions of Android and combines them with Android’s Palette and WallpaperColors APIs in order to create a custom theme that matches the current wallpaper. While this feature isn’t working in the public Developer Preview, developer kdrag0n, known for his work making the ProtonAOSP ROM and ProtonKernel for Pixel devices, managed to get it working, giving us our first look at Android 12’s new wallpaper-based theming system.
Here’s an album shared by the developer that shows off what it’s like to set a wallpaper and have Android 12 select a notification background color and accent color for the Quick Settings tiles:
A gallery of wallpapers and their corresponding themes in Android 12. Credits: kdrag0n
And here’s another album that shows how a theme recolors parts of Settings (with the hidden “Silky Home” flag enabled):
Lastly, here’s a set of images that showcases the theming system when Android 12’s new, in-development lockscreen and notifications UI are enabled:
While we haven’t been successful in enabling “monet” ourselves, we mostly understand how it works after digging into the SystemUI of Android 12. After speaking with developer kdrag0n, he revealed a bit about how he got it working. Here’s what he said: “I enabled the feature after setting a system property. However, it had no effect because DP1 does not contain any system color palettes. It works by applying RRO overlays dynamically based on color similarity, so I reverse-engineered SystemUI to find out how the overlays are supposed to be created. After that, I wrote a script to generate overlays based on Google’s official Material Design color palettes. Monet started working as soon as the color palettes were installed.”
Last week, we received design mockups of Android 12, which showcased the new notifications panel UI. Interestingly, the background of the notifications panel was a light beige color, which we believe was a result of the beige-colored wallpaper. We believed that Google was showcasing Android’s new theming system by demonstrating what it’s like to change the background and accent colors based on the prominent colors of the user-selected wallpaper. Earlier this week, we revealed that Google was working on this new wallpaper-based theming system under the code-name “monet”, and late last night, we published the first images of Android 12’s in-development lockscreen and notifications UI that partially matched the leaked design mockups. With this first look at “monet”, we now have a clearer picture of what to expect from the final design of Android 12, including the changes to one-handed reachability.
What do you think of the new theming system and UI of Android 12?