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After false start, Material Theme with dark mode returns to Android Messages

It looks like Google is once again pushing out a Material Theme overhaul and dark mode to Android Messages.

Published onAugust 27, 2018

Android Messages on the Google Pixel 2 XL.
  • Google has reportedly released a Material Theme redesign and dark mode for Android Messages.
  • The company originally launched the features earlier this month, but pulled them a day after launch.

Google updated its Android Messages app to version 3.5 earlier this month, delivering a Material Theme redesign and dark mode in the process. Unfortunately, the company pulled the update a day after the rollout. 

Now, 9to5Google and Android Police report that the Material Theme design and dark mode are back in the app. The features are available in version 3.5.052 of the Android Messages app, according to the outlets.

It’s been reported that you’ll need to start the app once, close it completely from the recents/multitasking menu, then restart the app to enable the new features. This method certainly seems to work for us, and we’re left with a rather fetching Material Theme redesign.

The dark mode itself doesn’t appear to offer proper deep blacks, so those with OLED screens might be disappointed with the overhaul. Sync for Reddit and the Kindle app definitely seem to offer deeper, OLED-friendly blacks by comparison.

How to use Android Messages using your PC

I wasn’t able to grab the update via the Play Store (only the 3.5.048 update was available to me), but I was able to download it via APKMirror. We’d recommend you keep checking the Play Store instead if you’re unfamiliar with installing apps from other sources.

What do you think of the overhaul? Let us know in the comments. In the meantime, you can keep tabs on the Android Messages Play Store listing via the button below.

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