Notification Center

This is our new notification center. Inside, you will find updates on the most important things happening right now.


Hmm, push notifications seem to be disabled in your browser. You can enable them from the 'Settings' icon in the URL bar of your browser.

Android Refresh Tuesdays – AMOLED theme

Android Refresh Tuesdays – AMOLED theme
Welcome to Android Refresh Tuesdays, where every Tuesday we show you how to give your Android home screen a fresh new look, based on a weekly theme.

This week's theme is AMOLED, as chosen by nearly 60% of last week's voters. As usual, you can vote for next week's theme below, or suggest one in the comments!

Now, as we'll be doing an AMOLED theme, it obviously helps to have a phone with an AMOLED display so you can fully appreciate our final result. We'll of course be focusing on pitch blacks, as on top of looking great on AMOLED screens, keeping most of your screen black (which means most of the pixels are turned off) might even help prolong your battery life a bit. Let's go!

Previous Android Refresh Tuesdays:

Step 1: Choosing the right wallpaper for an AMOLED screen

It's no secret that black wallpapers with minimal motives look best on phones with AMOLED displays, not to mention are easy on the eyes. You could go with a pitch black wallpaper, or make things a little more interesting by using a black wallpaper with some colorful elements.

In any case, here are some nice wallpaper suggestions that match our theme. Download the image you like best, then apply it as your phone's wallpaper.

Downloads: Street time lapse wallpaper, green plant wallpaper, circle of fire wallpaper.

Alternatively, you can download a dedicated wallpaper app like AmoledPix, which offers countless 4K wallpapers that look great on AMOLED screens. It has ads of course, but it can save you quite a bit of time in searching for the perfect wallpaper.

If you want the wallpaper you saw in the thumbnail, open AmoledPix, tap on the search button on the top right, type in "King Kong" and open the second result. To apply this as your wallpaper, next tap "Set as" and "Set As Home Screen".

Step 2: Download Nova Launcher so we can customize our home screen better

In order to install custom app icon packs and do some other home screen tweaks, download the free version of the popular and highly customizable Nova Launcher, and open it.

"Start fresh" when prompted, then press and hold on the home screen to access Nova's settings. Tap "Settings", "Home screen" and turn off "Wallpaper scrolling", so the wallpaper you've chosen will sit nicely at the center of your screen.

Now let's make our app drawer dark, as it's white by default.

Go back to the first "Nova Settings" screen, tap "Night mode", turn Night mode on, then check "App drawer" under "Use dark theme on".

Step 3: Installing an AMOLED icon pack

We can go one of two ways. Either we could pick up a black and white icon pack, or a colorful one, to add liveliness to our beautiful AMOLED home screen.

Since we already did black and white last week, I'd suggest picking up a colorful, but understated icon pack like UX Led. If you liked the final result you saw in the thumbnail, download this icon pack and we can proceed to applying it.

Press and hold on the home screen to enter Nova Launcher's settings again. Tap "Settings", "Look & feel", "Icon style", "Icon theme" and select "UX Led Free".

And we're done! You can proceed to add your favorite apps to the home screen. Swipe up from the home screen dock to open the app drawer and access all of your apps. Drag the apps you want from there to the home screen.

Also, for extra effect, punch up the brightness so your colorful wallpaper element and app icons pop out even better from the black wallpaper! This is something you can only enjoy on an AMOLED screen.

How to go back to my old Android look?

Simply delete the UX Led app, then delete Nova Launcher to go back to your default launcher and app icons.

What theme would you like to see next week?

Retro gaming theme
Summer theme
Car theme
Something else (I'll comment below)

New reasons to get excited every week

Get the most important news, reviews and deals in mobile tech delivered straight to your inbox

FCC OKs Cingular\'s purchase of AT&T Wireless