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How to get Android L on the Nexus 5 with CyanogenMod themes

Authored by: Kris Carlon — Jul 21, 2014

I've tried several different tricks for getting Android L on my Nexus 5, from actually running the developer preview to using an Android L themed icon pack or adding Android L features like the L Keyboard and new boot animation to my phone. But all of these solutions were either too buggy, incomplete or just not convincing enough. Now I have the one stop solution for you: CyanogenMod's theme engine.

android l homescreen nexus 5 teaser02
You don't have to put up with a buggy, incomplete system to get Android L. / © ANDROIDPIT

While I've been using CyanogenMod 11 for ages now, I've never bothered with trying out their theme engine. That was until late last week when I decided to throw a theme on and see how good it was. That's when I found the Android L theme, and with the press of just one button I had a makeover that went beyond the superficial.

AndroidPIT CyanogenMod Android L Theme 1
New icons, navigation buttons, lock screen notifications and more. / © ANDROIDPIT/CyanogenMod/tung91

The Android L theme on CM 11 adds new functionality like lock screen notifications just as you see them in the developer preview of Android L: a completely new UI including app icons, navigation buttons, quick settings and more and all of it looks really unified. This is as close as you're likely to get to the new Material Design overhaul coming in Android 5.0 Lollipop.

AndroidPIT CyanogenMod Android L Theme 2
You'll get new Quick Settings in the Android L theme and there's plenty of others to choose from in CyanogenMod's Themes Showcase. / © ANDROIDPIT/CyanogenMod/tung91

Combined with the new Google+ app and L Keyboard download from the Amazon Appstore, the transformation was very impressive indeed. Of course, you'll need to have the CyanogenMod ROM installed on your phone, but once you've got that all you need to do is hit the Theme section in the menu, then Theme Packs and hit ''Get More'' in the top right hand corner. You can now either browse through the themes available in the CynaogenMod Themes Showcase (if you have it installed) or just search for Android L. Once you have the theme on your phone you can select from style, wallpapers, lock screen, fonts, boot animation, icons, ringtones, notifications and alarms. Tick the boxes you want and you're done: instant Android L!

AndroidPIT CyanogenMod Android L Theme 3
In CM 11, go to Settings > Themes > Theme Packs and ''Get More''. / © ANDROIDPIT/CyanogenMod/tung91
AndroidPIT CyanogenMod Android L Theme 4
Grab the Android L theme, select the bits you want and hit ''Update''! / © ANDROIDPIT/CyanogenMod/tung91

Have you tried any Android L app, themes or ROMs yet? What's the best Android L experience you've had so far?

Kris Carlon comes to the AndroidPIT Editorial Team via a lengthy period spent traveling and relying on technology to keep him in touch with the outside world. He joined the Android community while resurfacing in civilization back in 2010 and has never looked back, using technology to replace his actual presence in other people's lives ever since. He can usually be found juggling three phones at once and poring over G+ posts, Reddit and RSS feeds.


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  • tung91 Aug 1, 2014 Link to comment

    Nice to see my theme here !!!!!

  • Bojan M. Jul 22, 2014 Link to comment

    Yes, this one is great, used it for some time. Right now, I'm sporting Flattington theme and it's great (IMO) and it seems to be a variation on Android L theme. Try it out.

    • Kris Carlon
      • Admin
      • Staff
      Jul 22, 2014 Link to comment

      Just installed it. Not a fan of brown unfortunately but I'll follow your recommendation. The 4G icon in the status bar is awesome!

      • Bojan M. Jul 22, 2014 Link to comment

        Not a fan of brown myself, but I tolerate it with that green :D
        The thing I like the most about looks of new Android L are those navigation buttons and with Flattington it gets even better.
        Anyway, you didn't really have to follow my recommendation and you definitely should not listen to anything I say or recommend :D but considering you did, I hope you'll like it, in the long run at least.

      • Kris Carlon
        • Admin
        • Staff
        Jul 22, 2014 Link to comment

        Well I'm digging the tiny nav buttons and the fact it is theming my apps and even my keyboard, so it was definitely a worthwhile recommendation to follow. I'll be more cautious in future though... ;)

  • Love this theme, so far the best in my opinion.
    I'm just winding wondering how to get the 4 icons in the bottom line
    Any help?

    • Kris Carlon
      • Admin
      • Staff
      Jul 22, 2014 Link to comment

      They are just my app folders, nothing special. Apex Launcher (and pretty much every other) let's you set how you want your folders to appear.

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