How to Install a Dark Theme on Android Oreo without Root

Some of you might remember the days of Android Gingerbread’s green-colored system theme. That was later supplanted by the much beloved Holo UI when Matias Duarte joined Google. The dark, almost futuristic look of Android during the Ice Cream Sandwich, KitKat, and Jellybean was comfortable on the eyes, although the design is dated when paired against the Material Design interface introduced in Android Lollipop. Since then, Google has stuck to the light Material theme to the dismay of many. Getting rid of the blindingly bright light theme on Android Oreo is probably one of the most commonly cited reasons why people are so excited for rootless custom theme support via the Substratum theme engine. Today, we’ll show you exactly how you can install a dark theme on your Android Oreo phone without root!

Top row: Android Oreo’s default theme. Bottom row: Custom dark theme built for Android 8.0


How to Install a Dark Theme on Android Oreo

Prerequisites

Rather than rehashing how to set up Substratum on your shiny Android 8.0 Oreo device, check out this previous tutorial. Follow through that article until you reach the end of “Part 1”, then return to this article to be guided through setting up the dark theme.

Once you’ve set up the Andromeda add-on and have confirmed that Substratum launched without issues, follow the below link to install Sai’s Android Oreo Black Theme. It’s a totally free theme made by a talented themer, but if you enjoy his theme you should consider donating to the user.

[Substratum] Sai's Android Oreo Black Theme
[Substratum] Sai's Android Oreo Black Theme

This particular theme currently only themes the Android System/Framework as well as System UI, but we can combine this theme pack with another one from the same developer to theme a few additional applications. Called Sai’s Fresh Theme, this Substratum theme allows you to apply a dark theme to applications such Android Messages, Google Play Store, and Twitter.

[Substratum] Sai's Fresh Theme
[Substratum] Sai's Fresh Theme

If you’re looking for a theme that applies to more apps, we’ll recommend a few alternative dark themes at the end of this article, but many of the other dark theming apps out there aren’t free, so you’ll have to decide for yourself how many of your apps you want themed. In any case, getting a dark theme in Settings/System UI is more than enough for most people, so that’s why I am recommending Sai’s free themes here.

Tutorial – Installing a Dark Theme

  1. If you haven’t already, start the Andromeda desktop client so that Substratum has the permissions it needs in order to manage themes. The steps to achieve this, again, are outlined in the main tutorial here.
  2. Open the Substratum application and look for “Sai’s Android O Black Theme” in the list.
  3. Tap on it to enter the setup page for the theme pack.
  4. Here, tap on “select to toggle all overlays.”
  5. This will choose the default theme colors and navigation bar icons that come with the theme (Pixel Blue and Pixel respectively). If you want to change the color to “Better Teal”, “Rose”, or “Violet”, expand the dropdown menu under “Android system” and select the color that you want. Similarly, expand the dropdown menu under “System UI Navigation” to reveal alternative navigation bar icon themes such as “AOSP”, “Parapaper”, or “Pixel Neo.”
  6. Once you’re done selecting which overlays and which options you want to enable, tap on the floating button with the paint roller icon. This will bring up a small floating menu.
  7. Select “Build & Enable.” You will see a loading screen as Substratum compiles, installs, then enables each overlay file onto your device. All silently, without you needing to do anything else!
  8. After it’s done, you should see a small snack bar at the bottom telling you the status of the dark theme installation. It doesn’t last very long, but if you expand your notification panel you should see a notification from Substratum telling you that the theme installation was successful. You’ll also immediately be able to see your quick settings/notification panel become much, much darker!Install Dark Theme on Android 8.0 Without Root
  9. Note: any already existing notification in your notification panel before the theme is applied will not be dark themed. This will likely include the “theme compilation has completed” notification as shown above. Any new notifications that show up in your notification panel will, however, be dark themed, as shown in the feature image at the top of this article!
  10. Optional: If you want to install a dark/black theme for Messages, Twitter, and the Play Store then go back to Substratum and open up Sai’s Fresh Theme in the list. Here, select the themes that you want applied to the apps that you want to be themed. Just like above, tap the paint roller icon and select “Build & Enable” in order to apply the theme!

Enjoy the dark theme! Your dark themes will remain on your phone even if you reboot! It won’t survive a factory reset, however. If you decide to change your mind for whatever reason and want to go back to the default light theme, you can easily disable this theme by repeating steps 1-6, but instead of tapping on “Build & Enable” in step 7 you tap on “Disable selected.”

Alternative Dark Themes

As promised, here are a handful of alternative custom dark themes available for Android Oreo users. None of the below themes are free, but they are great examples of the kinds of themes that are available on the Play Store. Credits to XDA Senior Member rest0ck for putting together this list!

Hopefully with the explosion in popularity that rootless Substratum has brought to custom theming, more and more developers will create themes that will be compatible for Android Oreo users. Keep an eye out on our Substratum forum and stay tuned to the XDA Portal via the XDA Labs app for any future news about the Substratum theme engine.

This post is not the only Substratum related tutorial we published today. In fact, it’s part of a series. You can find the rest of the tutorials below:

Xbox One fall update preview hits Beta ring, adding Fluent Design, new Home, light theme and more

The upcoming Xbox One fall update is now rolling out in preview to Xbox Insiders enrolled in the Beta ring.

Microsoft has announced that the upcoming fall update for Xbox One, currently in preview, will soon be rolling out to those in the Beta ring of the Xbox Insider Program. While the update has been in testing for both the invite-only Alpha ring and select Delta ring members up until now, this latest expansion delivers its new feature set to a wider pool of testers.

We’ve previously covered what’s been confirmed for the next Xbox One update – many of these features already available in testing. Among the biggest changes is a refresh of the user interface influenced by the Fluent Design System, a redesigned Home menu layout and an all-new light theme. Other improvements include support for 1080p uploads through Microsoft’s Mixer live streaming service, a new Guide menu with further depth and other miscellaneous tweaks.

Beta ring users will be able to download the build from 6 p.m. PT/ 9 p.m. ET on September 6, or 2 a.m. on September 7 for those in the UK. For those who use the Xbox One’s Instant On mode, the update will begin automatically downloading to your console. If you choose to manually install the build, navigate to All Settings > System > Console Info & Updates and check for an update.

As we reach the end of the year, these builds continue to add new features and refinements, prior to the public release. While confirmed features, such as the new Xbox Avatars and original Xbox backward compatibility, are yet to hit Xbox Insiders, their arrival should be on the horizon. The Fall Creators Update, the equivalent update later this year for Windows 10 PCs, recently picked up a scheduled release date of October 18. Provided the roadmap for the Xbox One update is similar, we should see these new features rolling out in the weeks to come.

Are you getting your first hands-on with the next Xbox One update today? Or already spent some time with the new features through other rings? Let us know in the comments below or the new forum thread we’ve created!

What do you think of the new Xbox One update so far?

Latest Xbox One Preview Alpha build brings new light theme option

Last month, Xbox exec Mike Ybarra teased a new Light theme for the redesigned Xbox One dashboard that will ship on all consoles later this Fall. This new option is finally coming with the latest Xbox One Preview build for Preview Alpha Insiders, which the Xbox team released yesterday. If you already installed the new build, be aware that the option will go live today at 9AM PDT, and you’ll have to reboot your console to see it in the Settings app.

This latest build also brings notifications improvements, with Game invites moving from Action Center to the Multiplayer tab of the Xbox Guide, while Recent Achievements will now be found in the Achievements tab. You can read the full release notes below.

DETAILS

OS version released: rs3_release_xbox_dev_1710.170831-1900
Available: 6:00PM PDT 9/5 (1:00AM GMT 6/9)

NEW FEATURES:

Light and Dark Themes

  • We are adding new themes to the dashboard. In addition to the current theme, you’ll be able to select a new light theme. Please note that this setting will not be enabled till 9.00am PDT 9/6/17 as we need all Alpha users to be on this new build. After 9.00am on 9/6 simply reboot your console to see the setting. 1. Navigate to Settings > Personalization > System personalization > System theme. 2. Select Light.

Notifications enhancements

  • Game invites are moving from Action Center to the Multiplayer tab of Guide and Recent Achievements will now be in the Achievements tab. This makes it easy to see at a glance if you have new invites or Achievements when opening the Guide, and makes accessing those notifications faster, now that other system notifications aren’t in the way

FIXES:

  • Movies & TV and Misc Media Apps: Black screens during movie playback have been fixed as has Fast Forward.

KNOWN ISSUES:

  • Light Theme: There are some known visual contrast issues in messaging, the entertainment twist and the Mixer twist – you may see white one white. Fixes will be coming soon.
  • Sign-in When using Arabic or Hebrew language and signing in with a profile using the “Lock it down” security preference, the sign-in screen which requests Microsoft account e-mail address and password is distorted. This does not affect the profile if it is set to use the “Ask for my passkey” or “No barriers” security preferences. Workaround: Set the console to use another language, sign-in, and set the profile’s security preference to “Ask for my passkey” or “No barriers”. Alternatively, you can still type in your password as normal using the virtual keyboard though the screen is distorted.
  • Netflix: When using Hebrew language, Netflix fails to launch.
  • Minecraft Better Together Beta: Other games fail to launch after launching the Minecraft Beta. Workaround: This occurs if the Minecraft Beta is the first game launched after powering on the console; launch another game before Minecraft to avoid this issue. If you are stuck in this state, hard reset your console.
  • Blu-Ray Player: 3D Blu-Ray content plays in 2D.
  • Game Hub: Game Hub isn’t accurately tracking Gamerscore and achievement unlocks for certain games.

The redesigned Xbox Dashboard and the new Light Theme are just the first steps in Microsoft’s Fluent Design update for the Xbox One, and we expect much more in the near future. If you’re on the Preview Beta Ring, Xbox Preview Program manager Brad Rossetti also tweeted yesterday that you should get your first 1710 build in the next few days.


Further reading: ,

New Xbox One update adds light theme and notification changes for Alpha ring

A new Xbox One update is on its way to Alpha Preview members, introducing the highly anticipated light theme, notification changes and fixes to media playback.

Microsoft has unveiled a new Xbox One update on its way to members of the Xbox Insider Program, introducing both new features and bug fixes to those in the Alpha Preview. While the Fall Creators Update isn’t scheduled for public release until later this year, recent builds continue to debut new additions for those on pre-release rings.

In recent builds of the operating system, a focus has laid with redesigning the Xbox One’s user interface (UI) and incorporating the newly unveiled Fluent Design System. Continuing to build on the feature set of the console, today’s update will introduce a new “Light theme” makeover for the dashboard inspired by Fluent Design, alongside improvements to how notifications are displayed.

The biggest addition in today’s update is the long-awaited Light theme, which was first teased early last month. Following recent moves to improve the customizability of the Xbox OS, the new reskin of the dashboard will allow users to change up the color scheme of the UI, utilizing more whites and light grays. However, as a controversial choice which mostly comes down to personal preference, the original “dark theme” will still be enabled by default. The option to enable the white theme will be available in the Settings app shortly after the build has rolled out, at 9 a.m. PT / 12 p.m. ET on September 6.

Changes have also been made to how notifications are displayed, in a move to streamline how they can be consumed. While all notifications were previously dumped in the Action Center, these will now be sorted into their corresponding tabs on the Xbox Guide. For example, game invites will now be accessible via the Multiplayer tab, and achievement pop-ups can be accessed through Achievements.

Today’s update also brings fixes to the Movies & TV app, as well as other video playback apps, fixing a previous bug that caused black screens when fast-forwarding. However, several issues are still present, affecting the Light theme, sign-in screens when using certain languages and other issues with third-party applications. Here’s a breakdown of the full changelog, as provided by Microsoft.

DETAILS

OS version released: rs3_release_xbox_dev_1710.170831-1900
Available: 6:00PM PDT 9/5 (1:00AM GMT 6/9)

NEW FEATURES:

Light and Dark Themes

  • We are adding new themes to the dashboard. In addition to the current theme, you’ll be able to select a new light theme. Please note that this setting will not be enabled till 9.00am PDT 9/6/17 as we need all Alpha users to be on this new build. After 9.00am on 9/6 simply reboot your console to see the setting. 1. Navigate to Settings > Personalization > System personalization > System theme. 2. Select Light.

Notifications enhancements

  • Game invites are moving from Action Center to the Multiplayer tab of Guide and Recent Achievements will now be in the Achievements tab. This makes it easy to see at a glance if you have new invites or Achievements when opening the Guide, and makes accessing those notifications faster, now that other system notifications aren’t in the way

FIXES:

Movies & TV and Misc Media Apps

  • Black screens during movie playback have been fixed as has Fast Forward.

KNOWN ISSUES:

Light Theme

  • There are some known visual contrast issues in messaging, the entertainment twist and the Mixer twist – you may see white one white. Fixes will be coming soon.

Sign-in

  • When using Arabic or Hebrew language and signing in with a profile using the “Lock it down” security preference, the sign-in screen which requests Microsoft account e-mail address and password is distorted. This does not affect the profile if it is set to use the “Ask for my passkey” or “No barriers” security preferences. Workaround: Set the console to use another language, sign-in, and set the profile’s security preference to “Ask for my passkey” or “No barriers”. Alternatively, you can still type in your password as normal using the virtual keyboard though the screen is distorted.

Netflix

  • When using Hebrew language, Netflix fails to launch.

Minecraft Better Together Beta

  • Other games fail to launch after launching the Minecraft Beta. Workaround: This occurs if the Minecraft Beta is the first game launched after powering on the console; launch another game before Minecraft to avoid this issue. If you are stuck in this state, hard reset your console.

Blu-Ray Player

  • 3D Blu-Ray content plays in 2D.

Game Hub

  • Game Hub isn’t accurately tracking Gamerscore and achievement unlocks for certain games.

Are you planning to use the light theme on Xbox One going forward? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time theme receives a stunning new rendition

zelda jillian aversa Ocarina of Time
Numerous Zelda fans all over the place can concur that the theme track for The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is one of the most stunning tunes in existence. Now many thanks to singer Jillian Aversa, she has blessed us with a gorgeous new rendition known as “Chrysalis.” She has partnered with YouTuber Erutan (Kate Covington), who performs with an ocarina, harp and glockenspiel. In addition, Aversa has arranged the track with her partner, Andrew “zircon” Aversa. The music online video will make one feel like they’ve transported into a further globe many thanks to the forest placing, costumes, and of training course, the music.

Check out “Chrysalis,” an homage to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time beneath.

“After having a more literal approach with the characters in my 2nd Zelda music online video final yr, I needed to return to a freer interpretation for this one,” responses Jillian. “When I feel of the Zelda games, I really do not just photo Hyperlink and Zelda, but the entire globe of Hyrule — with all its magic and appeal. What does this globe glimpse like from the point of view of the critters that inhabit it? That is the query that inspired our online video strategy. Kate and I every single enjoy a few unique animal characters, all coming alongside one another to witness the metamorphosis of a moth.”

“The site was a gorgeous pocket of Maryland forest untouched by the homes crafted all around it,” Erutan notes. “My most significant challenge was going for walks as a result of the brush in a extensive dress, attempting to glimpse like a swish forest animal whilst seeking not to excursion about the thorny vines, fallen logs, and other forest floor goodies. Jillian was considerably much better at this than me,” she laughs. “We appreciated ourselves totally!”

Jillian also praises the talented online video director: “Landon Donoho has an uncanny ability to transform goals into dreamy truth. I feel exceptionally fortunate every single time I get to do the job with him.”

Jillian has designed other renditions such as themes from NieR, Ultimate Fantasy VI, Metallic Equipment Sound 3 and Video game of Thrones.

Xbox One dashboard is getting a light theme later this year

As a part of the next Xbox One update, a new light theme is on the horizon.

Earlier this week, Microsoft unveiled the latest revision of the Xbox One operating system, introducing some of the biggest visual overhauls since launch. While still in progress, the first build is already on its way to Xbox Insiders, with a major revamp of the Home screen, a new Xbox Guide menu and system-wide tweaks based on the Fluent Design System.

Shortly after the update’s unveiling, Xbox platform Corporate Vice President, Mike Ybarra, took to the company’s Mixer live streaming service to showcase the new dashboard update running on an Xbox One X. As a part of a subsequent community Q&A, Ybarra confirmed a light theme is in the works for the Xbox One OS.

Although not available in the public build shipping today, a light variant of the dashboard is in the pipeline, complementing the existing darker color scheme currently seen by all Xbox One users. Despite not providing a precise timeframe for its arrival for Xbox Insiders, the light theme will be publicly shipping as a part of the Fall Creators Update for Xbox One, later this year. For now, Ybarra has assured gamers that it simply “looks awesome” in its current state.

The latest update to the Xbox beta app for Windows 10 introduced a new light theme.

Back in May, Microsoft debuted an early concept of how Fluent Design may look on Xbox One, via a reveal video for the design language. Although significant deviations from the concept can be expected with the final public release, this already provides an idea of how white UI elements may look on the Xbox One dashboard. A recent update to the Xbox app on Windows 10 also introduced similar changes, with the option for both light and dark UI themes.

For a closer look at the next Xbox One system overhaul, make sure to take a deeper look at the features introduced with the first wave of the update’s rollout. Are you looking forward to a light theme on Xbox One? Or will be sticking to black? Make sure to let us know in the comments section.

Theme for Playstation advert viewed five million times and led by Wrexham orchestra conductor

A Playstation advert which has been viewed almost five million times features a haunting theme tune led by an orchestra conductor from Wrexham.

Robert Guy brought his skills to the ears of computer gamers all around the globe when he conducted the world famous Manchester Camerata orchestra in Sony’s advert called ‘The King’ promoting the PlayStation 4.

Since being uploaded to YouTube, the TV and cinema advertisement has been viewed more than 4.8 million times.

Mr Guy said he was “delighted” to conduct Manchester Camerata for Playstation’s advert for The King on PS4.

Wrexham conductor Robert Guy

“It was very much Playstation’s baby, with Sony taking control of the whole creation, but our contribution took about one and a half hours to complete, at Manchester’s 80 Hertz recording studio.”

“Ironically I don’t play computer games and I rarely get chance to go to the cinema, but, nevertheless, I’m thrilled to have worked on such a phenomenal undertaking. I’d love to do more projects like that.”

Now the 29-year-old is moving on to other projects and has launched a search to find young virtuosos from North Wales to follow in his footsteps at a top festival.

Mr Guy who founded the NEW Sinfonia orchestra with his brother Jonathan is spearheading the search for recruits to a youth masterclass at the North Wales International Music Festival where they started out.

Wrexham conductor Robert Guy

NEW Sinfonia is now the resident orchestra at the festival which starts at St Asaph Cathedral on Saturday, September 16, and ends on Saturday, September 30.

The festival is running the Strings Alive project with the assistance of the Thomas Howell’s Education Fund for North Wales and organisers are looking for at least 30 young musicians of all ages and abilities to take part.

The project will culminate in young string instrument players performing in the glittering finale concert at the cathedral alongside their tutors and NEW Sinfonia, playing exactly the same piece performed by the young Robert at the end of his own masterclass 12 years ago.

Mr Guy said: “This will be the first time that the festival has run a workshop for young musicians working on this specific piece of music since the one I memorably took part in when I was 16 years old, so it’s marvellous to see things coming full circle this year.

Wrexham conductor Robert Guy led the theme for Playstation’s The King advert

“We’re looking for young players of the violin, viola, cello and double bass from primary or secondary school age from right across North Wales to take part.”

There will be a full day of coaching, then, on Saturday September 30, there will be a final rehearsal before the young musicians take part in the finale evening concert playing the piece they have learned.

The workshop will be held between 10am and 4pm on Sunday, September 17, at Ysgol Brynhyfryd in Ruthin.

For more information call 01745 584508, 07919 621933, or email caroline@nwimf.com.

For more information on the festival please visit here

Accesso to acquire theme park tech firm for $80 million

An Orlando theme park technology company is about to expand its portfolio.

Accesso, which builds tech products that help theme parks manage lines, sell tickets and accomplish other tasks, plans to acquire The Experience Engine for $80 million.

The acquisition is expected to be finalized on or about Thursday.

The Experience Engine, known as TE2, is a San Diego-based company that has provided technology in the past to Merlin Entertainment, SeaWorld and others.

The company recently made headlines when a wearable device that allowed guest to open cabin doors or pay for merchandise on Carnival cruises was showcased at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January.

The Medallion should debut in November on Carnival’s Regal Princess, which is run by the company’s Princess Cruises division.

TE2 has a 30-person office near Universal Studios.

“The addition of TE2 is a major step forward in the evolution of Accesso and the innovative solutions we offer to the broad-ranging leisure, attractions and hospitality marketplace,” Accesso CEO Steve Brown said in a release announcing the pending deal.

PNC Bank boosts women in tech

PNC Bank is calling on businesses and other entities to encourage more women to pursue careers in technology.

Last week, the company offered advice that would help grow that number. The advice included taking personal accountability for workplace biases, including men and women in all efforts and following up when comments appear to make assumptions of people.

The bank took part in “Sit With Me,” a global advocacy campaign created by the National Center for Women and Information Technology.

Lucy Sanders, CEO and co-founder of NCWIT, said the effort is one that looks to make tech-based companies and departments more inclusive.

“If you’re a woman in technology, you’re working against people’s expectations,” she said in a release distributed by PNC Bank.

According to NCWIT data, women make up more than 50 percent of the workforce in the U.S., but only about 25 percent of computing jobs.

Startup to tackle live-stream instruction

The ages-old question of how to wing your eyeliner is a mystery no more.

An Orlando company called Askedoo has been building a database of user-generated live stream sessions that ask the audience for tips on various topics.

In the videos, which the company has been uploading to YouTube, users ask a question and get advice from people in the form of text-based comments on the video.

The new platform allows those seeking advice to essentially hire an expert for a one-on-one session if an answer leaves them wanting more.

Askedoo, which employs 11 in Orlando, will eventually collect a fee on the hires, although the company says that, for now, the goal is to build a user base.

Got a news tip? msantana@orlandosentinel.com or 407-420-5256; Twitter, @marcosantana

San Diego’s TE2, a provider of theme park software, acquired by U.K. rival for $80M

The Experience Engine, a San Diego marketing software firm for theme parks and cruise lines, has agreed to be acquired by London-based Accesso Technology Group for $80 million.

The deal boosts Accesso’s portfolio of technology products targeting the leisure industry. Traded on the Alternative Investment Market in the United Kingdom, Accesso offers ticketing, payment and fast-pass technology to operators of theme parks, ski resorts, hotels and other hospitality venues.

The company said its larger size, customer base, distribution and capital will accelerate the adoption of The Experience Engine’s technology.

Known as TE2, The Experience Engine makes a software platform that helps marketers deliver personalized offers to visitors. It raised about $8.5 million from investors since it was founded in 2013.

“The addition of TE2 is a major step forward in the evolution of Accesso,” said Chief Executive Steve Brown in a statement. “Our customers will have options to connect with their guests in new and exciting ways – from ticketing to food and beverage, retail, queuing and more.”

TE2’s first customer was SeaWorld. It now works with several leisure industry heavyweights including Cedar Fair Entertainment, the operator of Knott’s Berry Farm and other amusement parks nationwide; and Merlin Entertainments, which runs Legoland parks and other venues globally.

“Our businesses are highly complementary,” said Scott Sahadi, chief executive of TE2. “We’ve long admired the innovative approach Accesso has taken with its focus on high quality service, working with its clients as partners and continuing to raise the bar on technology.”

At the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show, TE2 announced its platform was part of Carnival Cruise Lines’ new Ocean Medallion program, where guests wear a quarter-size wireless disc on their wrist or as a necklace. The disc contains preferences and communicates with readers throughout the ship, allowing passengers to do everything from ordering and paying for drinks to unlocking their staterooms.

TE2’s revenue surged from $2.2 million in 2015 to $12.7 million last year, according to a filing by Accesso with the London Stock Exchange. Through the first five months of this year, TE2’s sales are significantly ahead of the equivalent period of 2016, the filing said.

The company is not yet profitable, but the filing claimed TE2 “continues to be on a high growth trajectory and, on a stand-alone basis, expected to reach positive cash generation in late 2018.”

At $80 million, the acquisition is the largest in Accesso’s history to date. TE2’s senior management have indicated they intend to stay on. The deal is expected to be completed late next week.

mike.freeman@sduniontribune.com;

Twitter:@TechDiego

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