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catalina – When does macOS switch between light and dark mode?



MacOS Catalina added support for automatic light and dark mode switching.

Example of setting screen

The support article linked above reads:

Auto (available in macOS Catalina): Automatically use the light look during the day and the dark look at night.

This does not seem to capture my experience though, so I wonder what the exact algorithm is here.

For example, where I am currently today:

  • in the capital of the country, the sun goes down at 18.43 according to Google
  • in my city, it sets at 18:46 according to Google
  • my theme changed from light to dark at 6:57 p.m.

Is this just due to different services used by Google and Apple to determine the sunset, or is it more to change the algorithm than it seems?


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