Doubling Down On Personalization: Android Q Intros Accent Colors

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Google is doubling down on the personalization aspect of the world's most popular operating system as the first beta build of Android Q that went live just a few hours ago supports accent colors.

In this context, "accents" pertains to secondary UI elements such as icons found in the notification shade. A relatively light shade of blue is still the default option, which is why many are likely to miss this is even a possibility, but hidden at the very bottom of the Developer Options is the ability to change it to black, purple, and green. The green hue in question does not appear to be the signature Android one but rather just a generic option with no clear inspirations. For added context, the approximate hex codes of the newly added accents are #7761ff (purple), #347b41 (green), and #1f1f1f (black).

Refer to the gallery below to see how new Accent Colors look in practice.

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Naturally, with things like shading, animation blur, and other special effects being part of the equation, the specific hues displayed on screen will vary, not to mention the situation can be further complicated when accounting for one's display settings which themselves vary across different Android implementations, depending on one's smartphone or tablet brand of choice. While changeable accent colors mark a new dimension of customizability for Android, the fact that this feature is located under Developer Options and not some menu that would make more sense like Wallpapers and Themes or Advanced Features suggests Google might opt to scrap it at any moment without notice. That's just the reality of early Android builds, and today's version of Android Q is as early as you can get; yes, it's called Beta 1 but don't let the name confuse you, this is an alpha build in nearly every sense of that term and it's unclear why Google even opted to scrap its established naming practice that would refer to this software version as Developer Preview 1 until 2018.

In case you want to play with the new colors but aren't sure how to do so because you can't access Developer Options, navigate to the About Phone section of the main Settings app, then just start tapping the Build Number item which doesn't appear to allow for interactions at first but will send you a "you're now a developer" prompt which also enables the hidden menu if you persevere for just a few seconds. From that moment onward, you'll be able to access Developer Options so long as you don't perform a complete wipe of your device.

Naturally, if you didn't already know that, chances are you're not a developer, so do keep in mind that this experimental build of Android Q isn't really intended for anyone else. Yes, it's publicly available for download and nothing's stopping you from flashing it onto your smartphone or tablet but it remains in an early stage of development and almost certainly contains countless bugs. In other words, using it on your daily driver is not the best idea and you can't count on any meaningful support from Google or anyone else if things go awry.

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