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How to turn an Ubuntu Touch device into the new Suru Dark instead of the default Ambiance theme to have a black and energy saving user interface?

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    You might be better to write this up in question and answer format: askubuntu.com/help/self-answer rather than in 'tutorial' format... – andrew.46 Apr 11 '16 at 22:04
  • Won't using a dark interface help save energy only if you have an amoled (?) screen? From what I understand, cheaper cell phone's screens aren't amoled. I don't know about what the Ubuntu phones come with. – DK Bose Apr 12 '16 at 4:04
  • I don't know. Like I said, it's just a guess. My BQ defenetly doesn't have an OLED display (Meizu Pro5 will have one). I think it's just a usual LED display. But I think, you're right, a usual LED screen works with changing salts per pixel witch define, what kind of light gets throught it. It has no influence on the LED backlight and also on the energy consumption. Whatever, for exact information about the functionality of the kinds of LED you shouldn't ask me :). I tried it for a new UI experience. – Bjarne Roß Apr 12 '16 at 12:44
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First of all a security note: Executing the following steps is at your own risk. I tested these steps only once at my BQ Aquaris E4.5 phone with an installed OTA10 update. I don't assume liability for this. Some native apps (like Browser or Dekko) don't support the new theme completely. You can see this in still white backgrounds or inappropriate font colors. But the functionality of these apps is not restricted.

So if you thought about it deeply, we now can start:

You'll need the Terminal app from the Ubuntu store. Open it and type the line:

nano ./.config/ubuntu-ui-toolkit/theme.ini

After this press enter and change “Ambiance” to “SuruDark” (without the quotes and not with a blank, so not “Suru Dark”) at the end of the “theme=” line. Then press Ctrl-O in the Nano section of the terminal to save it, then enter and finally Ctrl-X.

To test your changes reboot the device. If you're not happy with the Suru Dark theme change “SuruDark” back to “Ambiance” in the similar manner like above.

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  • Could you provide some screenshots of the dark theme? – pomsky Apr 12 '16 at 7:03
  • I'll do next time, I promise. Please wait. – Bjarne Roß Apr 12 '16 at 12:48
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I just stumbled upon this old question.

Currently (start of 2020) you don't need to edit files using the terminal anymore to change the theme in Ubuntu Touch.

There are two apps capable of changing the theme UT Tweak Tool and ThemeSwitch.

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