Are you interested in giving your Android phone a brand new look, there are few tools as powerful as Substratum. With just a few simple steps, you can completely change the look of the UI on your device. This hub has everything you need to get started with Substratum.

What is Substratum?

Substratum is a theming tool that can apply system-wide themes with or without root. There is a huge community of developers and designers making beautiful themes and tweaks. The history of Substratum starts with CyanogenMod, which was an extremely popular custom ROM. Cyanogen included a theming engine that made it super easy to apply themes. Unfortunately, Cyanogen eventually died off, but Substratum rose from the ashes. At first, it required root to apply themes, but Android Oreo made it possible to use without root.

How to Install Substratum on Android Nougat

Using Substratum on an Android Nougat device will require root access. If that’s something you don’t have yet, check out our full guide on “How to Root.”

  1. First, on your rooted Nougat device, download the Substratum Theme Engine app.
  2. Open the app and grant all the necessary permissions.
  3. Download a Substratum theme from the Play Store or browse the themes in the app. Here is a Pixel theme to try.
  4. In the Substratum app, tap the Themes tab and select the theme you downloaded.
  5. To apply the complete theme, enable the toggle for “Select to toggle all overlays.”
  6. You can also choose to apply individual elements of the theme.
  7. Tap the floating button and select “Install Selected.” The app will compile and install the theme.
  8. Once finished, reboot your phone to finalize the theme.

How to Install Substratum on Android Oreo

Android 8.0 Oreo made it possible for users to install Substratum themes without root. This works by utilizing Sony’s Overlay Manager Service, which Google baked into Oreo. To use Substratum on Oreo without root you need the purchase the Andromeda add-on.

But before you go purchasing the add-on, there are a couple of other things you’ll need.

  • Android 8.0 Oreo device
  • Access to a Windows, Mac, or Linux PC

If you meet those requirements, go ahead and download the two apps below.

  1. substratum theme engine
  2. andromeda ★ AOSP rootless 8.x

How to Install Substratum on Android Pie

Sadly, Google killed the ability to apply Subratrum themes without root on Android Pie. So just like with Android Nougat, you will need root access to use Substratum. That means the process is fairly similar. Just make sure the theme you download supports Android Pie.

  1. First, on your rooted Pie device, download the latest beta build from this Telegram group.
  2. Open the app and grant all the necessary permissions.
  3. Download a Substratum theme from the Play Store or browse the themes in the app.
  4. In the Substratum app, tap the Themes tab and select the theme you downloaded.
  5. To apply the complete theme, enable the toggle for “Select to toggle all overlays.”
  6. You can also choose to apply individual elements of the theme.
  7. Tap the floating button and select “Install Selected.” The app will compile and install the theme.
  8. Once finished, reboot your phone.
  9. Open Substratum and go to Manager
  10. Select the overlays you built earlier
  11. Enable selected from the floating button.

Substratum for Samsung Devices

It is possible to use Substratum on Samsung devices, but there are some extra things you will need. So far, it’s possible on both Nougat and Oreo Samsung devices. The Substrautm XDA forum is full of members working on this. You should check out the forum for all the latest develpments for Substratum and Samsung devices. Below are two threads for Nougat and Oreo Samsung devices.

Best Substratum Themes

Here are a few themes you can check out to get started. Keep in mind that not all themes will work for every phone. Check the descriptions to make sure the theme will work on your device and Android version.

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