Google Chrome’s dark mode can be enabled either automatically or manually on Windows or macOS; the Chrome Dark Mode runs automatically by changing the operating system’s settings. If you don’t want your entire device to adopt dark mode, you must configure it in Chrome only. Dark mode can be found in the settings of Android and iOS devices.
Why Does It Make Sense to Enable Chrome’s Dark Mode?
One of the main advantages of dark mode is that it is easier on the eyes. Although it has not been scientifically proven, different studies suggest that darker colors cause less strain than lighter ones.
Tip: Google Chrome users should also consider using Google Workspace, as the browser supports all the functions of the various tools.
How to Enable Google Dark Mode on PC: Windows 10 and 11
Automatic Dark Mode Activation
Step 1. Access the system settings with the key combination [Windows] + [i]. Alternatively, you can also right-click on your desktop and click on “Personalize”.
Step 2. Once in the settings, first select “Personalization” and then “Colors”. In Windows 10, this option is on the left, while in Windows 11, it is further to the right.
Step 3. Now you can select the “Dark” option. This is when this mode is activated throughout the operating system. The Chrome Dark Mode also turns on automatically.
Manual Dark Mode Activation
Step 1. If you don’t have one already, create a Google Chrome shortcut for your desktop.
Step 2. Right-click on the Chrome icon and select “Create shortcut”. If asked, confirm that you want to create a shortcut on the desktop.
Step 3. Double click on the name of the new shortcut icon to rename it to “Chrome Dark Mode”, for example.
Step 4. Then, right-click on the icon and select “Properties” from the dropdown menu.
Step 5. In the “Target” field, under “Shortcut”, add a space and the following text: “-force-dark-mode”.
Step 6. If you now start Chrome by double-clicking on the new shortcut, it will open in dark mode.
How to Enable Google Dark Mode on a PC: macOS
Automatic Dark Mode Activation
Step 1. Open “Settings” via the grey gear-shaped button in the Dock. You can also click on the apple at the top of the screen and select “System Preferences”.
Step 2. Click on the “General” option in the menu and then on “Appearance”.
Step 3. Now you can choose between three modes. One is “Dark”. Select this option if you want to activate dark mode throughout the operating system, which turns on Google Chrome Dark Mode automatically.
Step 4. If you select the “Automatic” mode, dark mode will be activated and deactivated at the general level depending on the time of day. This would also affect Chrome’s dark mode.
Note: Be aware: automatic mode not only activates Chrome Dark Mode, but the dark mode of the entire device. The mail folder, the default calendar, and all system menus will also appear in Dark Mode. If this is not what you are looking for and are only interested in Google Chrome Night Mode, it is better to manually activate it.
Manual Dark Mode Activation
To use Chrome in dark mode on macOS, a free extension like, for example, Dark Reader, is required. Here is how to get it:
Step 1. Open the main menu by clicking on the three dots at the far right of the address bar.
Step 2. Now select “More tools” followed by “Extensions”.
Step 3. Enter “Dark Reader” in the search field and install the extension.
How to Enable Chrome’s Dark Theme on Android and iOS
Automatic Dark Theme Activation – Android
Step 1. Access the system settings by clicking on the gear-shaped button.
Step 2. Next, select the “Settings” option.
Step 3. Here you can enable or disable the “dark theme”, which is what the Chrome Dark Mode is called when used on a smartphone.
Note: Dark mode that applies to the entire operating system was introduced with Android 10. If you have an earlier version of this operating system, you would have to download an app that activates dark mode. As most Android device manufacturers overlay their own user interface on the standard software, the explanations given above may not fully adapt to your smartphone.
Automatic Dark Mode Activation – iOS
Step 1. Access the settings through the grey gear-shaped button.
Step 2. Next, select the “Display & Brightness” option.
Step 3. Now you can choose between the options “light” and “dark”. With the latter, dark mode is activated throughout the system, including in the browser.
Note: Dark screen only works on devices equipped with iOS 13 (iPad OS 13). Earlier versions of the operating system do not offer dark mode.
Manual Dark Mode Activation in Chrome– Android and iOS
The operating systems of iOS and Android smartphones do not yet offer an official way to activate Dark Mode. However, there is a “hack” for Android. You would need to follow these steps:
Step 1. Open Google Chrome and enter the following command in the address bar: “chrome://flags”.
Step 2. A search box opens in which you enter the following command: “#enable-android-web-contents-dark-mode”. Alternatively, you can also search for the flag “force-dark-mode”.
Step 3. Change the setting from “default” to “enabled”.
Google Chrome Dark Mode Extension
In the Chrome Web Store, under the category “Extensions”, there is an extension called Dark Mode that can be added for free. Once installed, you can find it in the top right corner of the Chrome browser, by clicking on the puzzle icon. As soon as you press “Dark Mode”, Chrome’s dark mode will be activated. Another successive click will deactivate it again. If you wish, you can also pin the extension to the top of the browser.
Dark Mode – Not the Same as Dark Theme, Incognito Mode, or Night Mode
The Chrome Dark Mode, also known as dark mode, should not be confused with other terms like Chrome Dark Theme, incognito mode, or night mode. Each one is different:
Chrome Dark Theme: This is a dark design for Chrome that consists of several elements. Various themes of this type can be found in the Chrome Web Store. Just enter “dark” in the search bar.
Incognito Mode: When operating in this mode, you browse the internet privately in a separate window. This means that your browsing history data is not saved.
Night Mode: This term is often used to describe a camera setting. It is activated when there is hardly any light in the surroundings, i.e., mainly at night.