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Google Maps Bug Causes Dark Mode To Misbehave On Android Auto

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A recent update for Google Maps seems to have broken dark mode on Android Auto. Several users have reported that Maps is stuck on dark mode even during daytime. Version 11.33 or newer of the app appears to be the culprit.

Normally, Google Maps on Android Auto should automatically switch between light and dark themes depending upon the time of day. The light mode should kick in during the daytime when the car lights are off. It should move to dark mode after sunset. Of course, users can manually choose the default theme but lately, the automatic switching isn’t working properly. Maps is always launching with dark mode applied.

Affected users have taken to online forums such as Reddit and Google Support to report the issues (via). Based on the reports, Maps on Android Auto seems to be following the light/dark mode settings on the connected smartphone. Perhaps it isn’t completely following the phone’s theme settings either. If the phone is set to light mode, Maps does switch to light mode. But Maps doesn’t continue to follow if the phone is moved to dark mode. Moreover, after any disconnection, Maps is back to dark mode irrespective of other factors.

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This isn’t normal behavior and makes for an annoying experience. Maps light/dark mode should work on Android Auto independent of the phone’s settings. It should automatically switch based on the time of day. Not everyone is having this issue but it isn’t an isolated case or two either.

An upcoming Google Maps update should fix this issue

As said earlier, this issue started cropping up since Google updated Maps to version 11.33 a few weeks ago. A Google community specialist has suggested the company is aware of the problem. But the recently released version 11.34 doesn’t seem to fix it.

However, a user says Google Maps beta version 11.35 doesn’t have this dark mode problem on Android Auto. So the next stable update for the app should resolve it for everyone. But if the issue is causing too much inconvenience to you, there are a couple of temporary workarounds that you can try.

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Firstly, manually installing an older version (11.32 or older) of Google Maps should make dark mode work as intended. Alternatively, you can trigger light mode during the daytime by switching your phone to light mode too. Note that you will have to repeat this every time you disconnect Android Auto and start fresh. Watch out for an update for Google Maps in the coming days.