Google calls the new visual paradigm Material You, an evolution of Material Design. The key highlight here is customization. Google is making it easier than ever to personalize your phone to your tastes. The “transformative” feature gives you a custom color palette, and you can easily change the interface colors.Its color extraction tool picks the colors straight from your phone’s wallpaper, then applies them throughout the UI.
So your notification shade, lock screen, widgets, volume controls, and other elements take on a custom theme that’ll change every time your wallpaper does. Our Android 12 beta 2 hands-on gave us our first look at the theming engine we’ve been waiting for.Beta 3 then unlocked the option to pick a theme color manually, independent of your current wallpaper.
The main downside is that Google only offers four colors for light and dark mode, as we discussed in our beta 3 hands-on.Another new feature is themed icons. These convert the icons to a stylized design that incorporates your color theme.
Beta 4 added more converted app icons for Google apps, but third-party apps remain their usual selves. We’ll have to see if Google lets third parties submit alternate icons with the final release.