One of the recent updates from Google that was released included a hidden version of the new Material Design 2 redesign of Android Messages. This makes the app match the design of plenty of other apps that have also been updated to Material Design 2.
The first version of Material Design was laid out by Matias Duarte at the Google I/o in 2014. This was intended to unify all the products of Google and also make it a little more aesthetically pleasing. Over the years Android and pretty much all of Google’s apps have adopted the above approach and even the last stragglers like Gmail and calendar have adopted the design aesthetic.
But the latest Google visual updates in the last few months favor all-white backgrounds, rounded corners, and refreshed fonts. This is a departure from the idea laid out by Duarte. This new version of the design is what we have chosen to call “Material Design 2.”
Some of the most notable features that have been noticed in apps and in the developer preview of Android P were the following:
1) White Space and Translucency
2) Colorful Icons
3) Google Sans [font]
4) Rounded Corners
5) Rounded tab indicators
6) Rounded selection highlights
7) Larger Bottom App Bar
The new update from Google is a fantastic upgrade to the current version that is being used in Android Messages. In order to enable Material Design 2 in Android Messages, please do the following steps.
Note: You will have to root your phone before you perform the steps given below.
1) The first thing that you will need to do is install MiXplorer, this is available in XDA Labs. In order to modify the shared_prefs settings that is stored in the data partition, you will need to rely on this app.
2) Open MiXplorer and then go to the root section. Once you’re there, you have to go to /data/data/com.google.android.apps.messaging/shared_prefs/. After getting there, open PhenotypePrefs.xml. A popup will appear which will prompt you to select editor, you will need to select code editor.
3) Click on the three dots available on the top-right corner and choose 'Find’ and then search for bugle_phenotype__enable_m2.
4) The value at the end of this will be set to false. You will have to set this to true.
5) Now, you will need to go back to the Find option and then locate the option called bugle_phenotype__enable_phenotype_override. You will have to set this to true as well.
6) After doing the following, force close the Messages app.
When you open the app up again, the Messages app can be viewed in its Material Design 2 redesign.
The only drawback of using this method is that the redesign only lasts once per each force closure of the app. The app will reset to its original design if you choose to close the app through Recents by swiping it away.