Dark themes are all rage, with big names apps like Facebook Messenger and also OEM that Samsung enters into the trend. In order not to be surpassed, Google rolls out a dark mode to its popular Chrome browser for Android devices.
The new dark mode is available in the latest stable version of Chrome, so you don't have to touch experimental apps like Chrome Dev or Canary – you just need to activate a flag and then switch to a setting. But despite being in stable Chrome, it's a beta feature so there are some bugs that you can see as dealbreakers. Currently, the version of the dark mode in Chrome can only enhance the Chrome interface, not websites, but it can change when the feature becomes refined.
Step 1: Update to Chrome 74+
First, you need to update Chrome to version 74 or higher. If you're not sure which version of Chrome you are running, go to Settings -> Apps and then select Chrome from the list. Scroll down to the bottom of the App Info page and the version number should be listed there.
If you're not on Chrome 74 or higher, you'll need to update the app. The new version is currently scrolling out in the Play Store, but if it hasn't hit your device, you can pageless Chrome 74 by clicking on the APK link we've listed below. This is the same exact file that Google uploaded in the Play Store, so it's safe to install and it doesn't stop you from getting future updates to Chrome.
Step 2: Activate the flag
Now open the app and type chrome: // flags in the address bar and then press the enter button. From there you search for "Android Chrome UI dark mode", then press the box marked "Default" below to the highest result and select "Enabled" from the menu that appears. Turn on "Restart now" when you are done.
After Chrome successfully restarts, you still need to enable dark mode for the app, then press the menu button at the top right of the screen and select "Settings". From there, tap "Dark Mode" and then activate the switch on the following page to activate the function.
If the "Dark Mode" option does not appear in Chrome's settings, force the app to close and check the settings again until "Dark Mode" appears. In our testing we found that the option finally started after the power closed Chrome three or four times.
The darkness of the chromium is not a finished product, so it has still kinks that must be deleted before making their official debut. But it's a dark theme in the main browser's user interface, including the new tab page, tab switch, address bar, and various app menus.
The biggest problem you might notice is black text on dark gray background. This is in the tab switch menu, and for some users, on the "Articles for you" page. A smaller bug is the fact that the navigation bar stays white even though the app is in dark mode.
On first-rate versions of Chrome (such as the Canary Islands), Google seems to be testing an extended version of this theme, which also makes some sites dark. This can result in the same problem with dark text on a dark background, and there is another problem where images can be displayed in reverse colors from time to time.
If these errors are dealbreakers, you can deactivate the dark mode by returning to the Chrome settings menu, selecting "Dark Mode", and then turning off the AC switch. We update this guide with new info because the feature becomes more reliable.