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WhatsApp's new dark mode has arrived, but it just isn't dark enough

After many months of speculation and hints, WhatsApp dark mode has finally arrived for beta testing on Android, and I've been using it full-time since it arrived. It's rather nice, and it's certainly easier on the eyes at night than bright green and white, but there's just one problem: it's still not dark enough.

First, there's the app's main background. Rather than black, it's a dark greenish gray. That's all find and tasteful, but on an AMOLED screen you really want the background to be fully black so those pixels are switched off and not draining your battery.

Yes, a truly black background would mean missing out on the fun WhatsApp wallpaper (peer closely – can you see it?) but that's a small price to pay. Even if you enter the app's wallpaper settings and choose 'solid color', the darkest swatch isn't actually black. If you want a truly black background, you'll have to create a black image and set that as your wallpaper. That's quite a lot of hassle.

WhatsApp dark mode

Speech bubbles are much clearer in WhatsApp's light mode than the new dark version; an issue that could be remedied by a proper black background (Image credit: Facebook)

Next, there's the text, which is mostly stark white and therefore a little hard on the eyes. A more subtle shade would be easier to look at, and wouldn't have me dialling down the whole screen's brightness to lower the contrast.

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