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How to change Google Chrome into dark mode

Enable dark mode to give your browser a whole new look

Google Chrome 93 for iOS
(Image: © Shutterstock / XanderSt)

Switching to Google Chrome’s dark mode is not only incredibly easy but worth doing. It offers a couple advantages for Google's web browser, but mobile users will benefit even more. Using dark mode will prolong your phone’s battery.

It’s been confirmed by Google that using a darker interface instead of those bright, white ones, like Facebook's latest refresh, require less battery life, especially if you’re using something with an OLED display, since the black pixels there are turned off entirely.

While it’s still up for debate, using dark mode may improve your sleep, since you’ll be exposed to less blue light. Too much blue light, after all, could disrupt your circadian rhythm.

Google is not the first to jump on the dark mode train. You can find the feature in macOS, iOS and Android, and you’ll soon see it in Windows 11, as well. Whether it’s to save your device’s battery life or to go easier on your eyes, you’ll want to make the switch to the dark side.

If you find these reasons compelling to turn on Chrome dark mode, then read below on how to make the switch in Windows, macOS, Android and iOS.


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Changing Chrome to dark mode for Windows 10

1. Enter the Settings menu, choose 'Personalization' click 'Colors' and scroll down to the switch marked 'Choose your default app mode'.

2. Change this to 'Dark' and all apps with a native dark mode, including Chrome, will change color. There's no need to restart your browser.

Changing Chrome to dark mode for macOS

1. Open 'System Preferences', click 'General', select 'Appearance'.

2. Select the 'Dark' option. As with Windows, all apps with a native dark mode will change automatically with no further input from you.

Changing Chrome to dark mode for Android 12

1. Dark mode is still an experimental feature in Chrome for Android, so bear in mind that some design elements might look a little strange. To activate it, enter chrome://flags in the browser's address bar. 

2. Tap the 'Search flags' box and enter the work dark. You'll find two options here: 'Android web contents dark mode' and 'Android Chrome UI dark mode'. If you activate the first option, Chrome will detect if a site's developers have created a dark version and select it automatically. If there's no dark version available, the browser will invert the site's colors. Activating the second option means that the browser interface itself will turn dark.

3. Tap the drop-down menu under each of these options and change the setting to 'Activated', then restart Chrome.

4. Now open the settings menu, tap 'Themes' and select 'Dark'. If you can't see the Themes option, restart Chrome again and it should appear.

Changing Chrome to dark mode for iPhone and iPad

When Apple released iOS 13, it introduced dark mode to the whole operating system, both for iPhone and iPad.

Since then, Google Chrome for iOS has been updated to accommodate this.

You only need to make sure that Dark Mode is enabled in Settings > Display > Dark Mode, and Chrome will reflect this.

Are there other Google apps that support dark mode?

There's plenty of other apps from Google that can also switch to a dark mode. Gmail in dark mode lets you view your inbox without the glare of the standard white interface, and there's now a universal dark mode for Google Maps too, alongside a dark mode in Android.

This is particularly handy for mobile devices, as it lets you conserve a little extra energy while using your phone's battery-hungry GPS navigation.

Daryl Baxter

Daryl had been freelancing for 3 years before joining TechRadar, now reporting on everything software-related. In his spare time, he's written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', alongside podcasting and usually found playing games old and new on his PC and iPad. If you have a story about a newly-updated app or one that's about to launch, drop him a line.