With Android 12, Google’s operating system interface receives one of the biggest overhauls in years. Material Design becomes Material You: the user must be the focus here. Thanks to the developer community, you can already use many Android 12 UI features on your smartphone.
- Android 12: news and novelties of the new operating system
The final version of Android 12 is expected this fall. Android 10 and 11 arrived in September and we should plan to do the same with version 12. But: most of you will still not get the update this year, because the update cycle of Samsung, Xiaomi & Co. differs a lot from that of Google.
All this means that developers are working hard to bring Material You to pre-Android 12 smartphones. Various launchers, widgets and icon packs are available on Play Store for this purpose. With these third-party apps, you can already bring the look and feel of Android 12 to your phone. You can read how this works here.
Table of Contents:
Launcher for Android 12 skin
UI customization starts with the right launcher. The launcher is important because the widgets and icon packs suggested below must be compatible with the respective launcher.
There are many different launchers on play store. We suggest the Nova Launcher. It is very popular, flexible and also free.
Download Nova Launcher from Google Play Store
After downloading Nova Launcher, you need to set the app as the system default launcher. This makes it easy to activate the icon packs and widgets suggested in this article.
Can’t get used to the Nova launcher? Then of course you can also pull another launcher from the Google Play Store. The important thing is that the launcher allows the use of icon packs and widgets optimized for Material You. We have a detailed list of different launchers for you here.
Finish? Then let’s continue!
Configure Android 12 quick settings
In addition to the launcher itself, Android 12 has a very notable feature: quick settings, in which some icons now take up more space on the screen. An exact copy of Android 12 does not yet exist here. But the “Mi Control Center” app is quite close to the model.
The main issue here is the permissions required for settings and system notifications. Since the app can logically change system functions, access to phone controls and permission to read and control the screen is required. The app has over 95,000 reviews on the Play Store and a rating of 4.4.
In the basic version of the app, you can use the notification bar and quick shortcuts as shown in the image below. Like I said: The app isn’t perfect yet, but it gets pretty close to Android 12 and offers a few more configuration options.
Download Mi Control Center from Google Play Store
Download Android 12 wallpapers
Android 12 wallpapers were leaked some time ago, and many sites already offer high-resolution versions of the images. For example, the operators of the Russian website rosette uploaded the wallpapers to Google Drive (two directories). Alternatively, also Mr Android FHD Find them.
Android 12: Download wallpapers – Folder 1
Android 12: Download wallpapers – Folder 2
Android 12: Download wallpapers – Folder 3
To use the images as wallpaper on your phone, simply download them directly to the device. then you go under settings in the option Home screen & wallpaper > Set wallpaper > Gallery > Downloadsselect the image you want and press Confirm.
That is all! Now you have Android 12 wallpaper on your phone.
Configure Android 12 widgets
We are currently on Android 12 beta 3.1, and no widgets have been added to the system yet. However, some of Android 12’s key widgets are already available in third-party apps on the Play Store.
As much as I tried to suggest free options in this tutorial, it bordered on heresy about Material You widgets without mentioning KWGT. The paid app is one of the best options I’ve found so far to bring the look and feel of Android 12 to your phone.
Download KWGT Kustom Widget Maker from Google Play Store
Download KWGT Kustom Widget Pro Key from Google Play Store ($4.99)
After downloading and installing the app, you need to create a widget for KWGT. From there, you can add the widgets from the Android 12 package. Here’s how to do it:
- Long press the home screen and touch the option widgets;
- Scroll down until your custom widget find Drag and drop the desired widget size on the home page. Then play the part Click to configure or long press resize;
- Open KWGT and navigate to Android 12 Widget Pack. There are 110 widget options here: select the one you want to add to the screen;
- Once you have selected the widget, you will be taken to the edit screen. tap on the save to computerbutton in the upper right corner.
KWGT widgets are very close to those of Android 12. The most interesting thing is that the widgets also change color when you customize the wallpaper. Unfortunately, the volume control and music player don’t work that well.
There is a free version on the Play Store for those who are already satisfied with the design of Android 12 clocks. The widgets are also very well done, but they do not adjust the color based on the wallpaper. However, to test “Material You”, it’s fine.
Download Android 12 Clock Widgets from Google Play Store
Replace icons in Android 12
Another important point of the user interface is the icons. For customization, the Play Store offers a number of packages. In my test, I used “Pixel Pie Icon Pack” and “Android 12 Icon Pack”. Although it is paid, I liked the last variant better and you can see it in the screenshot below.
That is all. With the above suggestions, it will look like your smartphone already has Android 12 installed with the new “Material You” theme.
Smartphone price comparison with the Android 12 update
Does your smartphone no longer have Android 12? Below, you will find the smartphones in our list of the best smartphones 2021. With these, you get support for the upcoming Android and other versions of the operating system.
What do you think of these tips? Of course, these suggestions only affect the user interface: Android 12 brings many more features to your smartphone; you’ll have to wait for the big update for that. You can read when it will be available for your smartphone in our Android 12 update hub.
Do you have any other tips for apps, widgets, and settings that bring the look and feel of Android 12 to all phones? So we look forward to your feedback!