- Darjan Hren
A couple of years ago, dark mode came to our mobile phones through the operating system and some apps capable of changing the color palette to reduce the amount of light emitted by the screen and the impact of blue light on our rhythm.
Little by little, it has been integrating natively into systems (from iOS 13 and Android 10) and expanding the number of applications that include it on all smartphones. Today it is already a general trend that provides the user with various advantages.
With so many applications and even operating systems adopting the new dark theme, so requested by users, some people still do not understand the advantages of the new color scheme, nor in which cases the benefits are real or not, and why it is the latest trend in web and mobile development.
Intuitively we think that darker colors are less aggressive to the eyes and emit less light, save battery. Although correct, this statement does not apply in all cases. Our vision benefits from dark tones only when we are in environments with little - or no - clarity.
Following are some of the reasons why dark mode is the latest trend in web and mobile development:
Adopted by Big Fishes
It would be too skewed to credit Google with the invention of dark mode. Indeed, many early home computers with monochrome CRT displays displayed greenish text on black screens; however, dark-colored themes and backgrounds were reintroduced in recent years with Windows Phone 7, which was released in 2010.
Google has been applying the dark mode in its applications progressively. In the search engine case, the internet giant has started to activate it in the desktop version recently, and in the mobile version, it has been with us for almost a year and in the Google Chrome browser. The chosen palette is a very dark background, practically black, with light gray letters and blue links that reduce the amount of light shown on the screen.
Of course, when browsing through Chrome or going to a Search search result, the paradox occurs that, even though both tools present the dark color palette, the destinations will continue to show the usual white and bright appearance.
Currently, we have major tech companies and well-known domains that have consciously embraced the so-called "Night Mode" and are allowing consumers and users to change their viewing habits as they see fit.
Daniel Foley, SEO Manager at CloudTech24 says “Yahoo, Reddit, Twitter, YouTube, WhatsApp, Samsung's One UI, Apple's iPad, iOS 13, and Windows devices are among the apps that deliver dark mode to users”
“The bulk of the world's urban-tech population is used by these online networks and companies combined. As a result, there's no denying that night mode has become a common choice among smartphones and internet users” he added.
The dark mode of the cell phone can be ideal for those with sensitive views. With less brightness, a less illuminated screen tends to make users less force their eyes, which can avoid headaches and other problems. However, the predominance of white color with black text provides better reading, regardless of the environment.
This characteristic is a result of the nature of our eyes and the properties of light. When dominant, the white color causes the iris to contract to allow less light to pass through, making the content of the screen clearer; if the background is black, the effect is just the opposite and makes the lives of people with astigmatism even more complicated.
Thilo Huellmann, Chief Technology Officer at Levity.ai says “Both light and dark themes have their applications. Arguably, reading fast content at night is much more pleasant with the night mode, but it can cause discomfort in more extended readings. The ideal to make the night experience more pleasant is to adjust the brightness of the environment, incredibly close to the screen, to avoid eyestrain, or, if available, choose themes with shades of gray”
Less Battery Usage
The batteries of devices with OLED and AMOLED screens do not handle light subjects well - and that is one of the reasons for the popularity of dark modes. The technology effectively turns off portions of the screen that exhibit dark tones, which does not occur with conventional screens. If your computer has an LCD display, it can use backlighting, which is very different in terms of power consumption.
With LCDs, the same amount of light is produced if the screen is white or black as long as the monitor is switched on. Since the color black is created by putting a filter over the backlighting on LCD displays, the power consumption is exactly the same.
Veronica Miller, Cybersecurity Expert at VPNoverview says “On devices with OLED displays, Dark Mode will dramatically reduce battery drain. The logic is that the pixels are fully switched off, unlike LCD displays, where power is needed to view both light and dark shades of a pixel”
Mathew Daly, Founder of Pengar.gg says “We are all aware that most online viewers seldom read texts, as the most common and widely consumed types of media are visuals, which can be classified as either videos or photographs. As a result, when it comes to dark-themed websites' success, user tastes play a part”
92 % of marketers use videos as an integral part of their marketing plan, according to a new survey. Furthermore, in 2022, it is predicted that people will spend up to 100 minutes a day on average watching online videos
Joe M, founder and CEO of Wood Working Land says “Watching online videos is one of the most common types of internet activity around the world. As a result, when these experiments are considered, it is clear that dark themes fit well with online video streaming sites”
Dark Mode Helps People with Disabilities.
Dark Mode can be indicated for users with photophobia, which causes migraines from exposure to bright lights. Also, Google argues that the option helps users with other vision problems and for people who are more sensitive to light.
Eric McGee, Senior Network Engineer at TRGDatacenters says “By not using dark mode settings on your devices, you are exposing yourself to higher levels of harmful blue light which impacts on your quality of sleep. Excessive exposure to blue light can subdue melatonin production which helps regulate your sleep”