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Has Gmail Dark Mode gone Missing? Here’s a Hack to Bring it Back

by Felix Omondi

Dark Mode is the new black, a trend that is fast catching among users, forcing developers to adopt the theme. Google, too was not left behind, and for some time now, Android users have been enjoying Gmail dark mode, much to the envy of iPhone users.

However, the dark mode seems to have ‘upped and left’ without any warning. You go to sleep, leaving the Gmail app on your phone in dark mode. When you woke up the next morning and reached out for your phone (as most people do, first thing in the morning), you are blinded by the white light coming off the Gmail app.

The light that comes with the light theme can be blinding, especially if you have adopted the dark theme across the entire Android ecosystem. Things get worse if you are using the phone in a dark room, like in the morning before you pull the blinds and the lights inside are still off.

A Bug caused Gmail Dark Mode disappearance

While your iPhone friends might be feeling happy that now you are on equal grounds, as far as Gmail dark mode is concerned. As an Andriod user, you should rest easy knowing that the disappearance of the dark mode on the Gmail for Android app was caused by a bug, which engineers over at Google are working to fix it.

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It used to be you could enable the Gmail dark mode by going to tapping on the hamburger icon then scroll down to Settings > General Settings > Theme. Right now, if you try that on the Gmail for Android app, you will not find the dark theme option.

Of course, you can always try rebooting your phone and check again to see if it will fix the problem. If that doesn’t work, you can always force-close the app by going to Settings > Apps & notifications Gmail > Force stop. If again that fails, you can try clearing the cache. My money will be on, the problem persists.

So, you might find yourself forced to be patient and wait for Google to fix whatever the heck is wrong with the Gmail app for Android. However, if you are feeling impatient, then read ahead for a hack on how to circumvent the problem.

According to one seemingly technical commenter over at Android Police, the Gmail dark mode can be gotten back using the following hack

…you can open the file/data/data/… and set name =”DarkThemeSupport_dark_them_support to true.”

However, this trick only works on rooted Android devices. If your device is not hacked (because you are a risk-averse user), there is a safer route for you.

Go to Settings > About phone, and scroll down to the build number and tap it as many times as it takes to unlock the Developer Options.

Now go back to Settings, then go to System > Advanced > Developer Option and look out for Hardware accelerated rendering and enable Override force-dark. Doing that might make your other apps look odd, but if that is a small price to pay for your Gmail dark mode, the no big deal.

Alternative Mobile Email apps with Dark Mode

Of course, there ‘is always an app for that,’ and as far as your emails on Gmail are concerned. I am sure you know you do not need to limit yourself to Google’s bespoke app; Gmail for Android.

There are a plethora of apps out there in the Play Store that can easily replace the Gmail app, and they come with dark mode without any bugs. To mention a few, there is Outlook and Spark, which you can readily use in dark mode.

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