[TOOL] Remote Theme Injector - theme your favorite paid apk

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By Diamondback, Retired Developer Committee Lead / Retired Senior Moderator / Inactive Recognized Developer on 6th July 2012, 09:53 PM
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Themers on XDA face a huge problem when it comes to paid apks. They can't theme apks and distribute their work since that would be considered warez.

Since we - the moderators - spend a lot of time closing threads where someone accidentially published such a theme, Forum Moderator Whiskey103 came up with an idea.
What if the themer doesn't distribute the entire apk, but only his themed parts? This would be totally allowed on XDA.

So Whiskey asked me if I can come up with a solution to this problem. And today we announce RTI - The remote theme injector!

Note: while this project is intended for paid apks, it still works with free apks too of course. This app might help you migrating themes to a new version of the apks too.

RTI basically consists of two parts:
  • The patcher (or themer)
  • And the editor which is needed to create themes


This is a little windows app which takes the target apk and a theme file (more on that later) and automatically injects the theme into the desired apk.
Todo this, the apk gets decompiled, patched, recompiled, signed and zipaligned. All this happens automatically and requires no input from the user (which is in this case the user who wants to USE the theme)
The user has to provide the target apk on his own, this ensures no apks are distributed as part of the theme.
It can be pulled via ADB or Rootexplorer from the phone for example.


The first app was for applying a theme, the editor is for creating such themes.
It's a simple wizard style app which guides the themer through the required steps to create a theme file.
Each theme file contains not only the actually themed files but also its own version of apktool to ensure maximum compatibility and a set of settings specifically for the target apk
The settings include:
  • Package name of the target apk
  • Version number of the target apk
  • Which sign method to use (keep old signature, sign with a default key, sign with own key)
  • Whether the apk gets zipaligned or not

The workflow for the user is very easy:
  • Download theme (it contains the patcher and the theme file (or even multiple themes)
  • Fetch target apk from phone and copy it in the same directory as the patcher
  • Start patcher and wait until it's done
  • Install themed apk on device

The workflow for the themer isn't much harder:
  • Theme your apk just as you are used to it
  • provide TWO folders to the Editor, both folders need to contain the decompiled output of apktool
  • The first folder contains the unthemed, decompiled apk, the second one contains the themed and decompiled apk
  • Set the required settings in the editor and wait until generating the theme is done
  • Provide the user a download which contains the patcher and your created theme file




  • Added support for smali modification for advanced themes
  • Some bug fixes and UI improvements
  • Important: This version brings some breaking changes, so please do not mix an old rti file with the new patcher. It won't work. You have to recreate your theme files if you want to use the new patcher.
  • Changed signing options. Removed java jarsign and added signapk.jar instead. This has a far better compatibility and doesn't require an installed Visual C++ runtime.
  • Possible signing options now:
    • Use 'test keys': Use a pre defined set of keys from me to sign the apk
    • Use 'own keys': you have to provide your own set of keys (key.pk8 and certificate.pem) to sign the apk
    • Keep old signature: NOT recommend, this has a few use cases, but usually won't work. Use one of the other two options if you are not sure.
  • Improved error detection on the folder selection page. It can tell you some common errors now if you make them.
  • Initial release

Example themes

Tapatalk Pro/Free by Whiskey103
XDA Premium Red and Blue by Whiskey103

Requirements (this is both for Editor and Patcher)
  • Windows XP SP3 or newer (excluding all Windows 8 versions)
  • Microsoft .NET framework 4.0 FULL
  • Oracle JRE (Java) (Always try to use the latest Java version)



Old versions:

  • Whiskey103 for the excellent idea
  • brut.all for apktool
  • Google for Android
  • My girlfriend for tolerating my work on XDA
  • My dog for keeping me happy
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6th July 2012, 09:54 PM |#2  
Whiskey103's Avatar
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I will write a guide here, for now just screenshots and a little explanation on how to use the "Patcher"
We will do our best to answer the questions about how to use and all that

Basically i came up with the idea because of the fact we have to delete a lot of themed paid apps.
Thats not nice since i know there is much time spend on it.
So now we have a solution for all the themed Swype apk,s etc etc

I really felt sorry sometimes after i had to remove some masterpiece because it was "warez"
If we start to use this, its all fine

BIG Thanks to Diamond who really liked the project from the beginning, without him this wasn't even possible.
He really was enthusiast from the moment i contacted him till where we are now.
Once again, thanks Diamond

The patcher:

You have to download a patcher theme (XDA Premium App example) my thread for screenshots
Extract that folder and grab the installed apk from your phone with Rootexplorer or ES File Explorer.
Place that apk in the extracted theme folder and run the RemoteThemeInjector.exe
In this case the RTI (Remote Theme Injector) will give you a list since i placed two themes in one folder. Just make your choice.
The patcher will do his job and spit out a Themed APK.
Copy that Themed APK to your phone (SD-Card) and install it after you removed your previous installed version of the App.
Once the apk is installed , goto menu / more / settings / Display Style / and select XDA Free.

The Editor

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6th July 2012, 10:27 PM |#3  
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this is awesome!! thanks so much guys!!!
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6th July 2012, 10:45 PM |#4  
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Amazing idea to solve this issue. Thanks to ALL for this...well done!

Sent from my Nexus S using xda premium
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7th July 2012, 12:44 AM |#5  
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Thanks you guys,great job,good workaround.
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7th July 2012, 12:59 AM |#6  
bearw815's Avatar
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What am i missing?

edit: fixed -java issue

Thanks for the tools.
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8th July 2012, 12:44 AM |#7  
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Thanks Diamondback and Whiskey
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8th July 2012, 04:57 AM |#8  
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This is an outstanding idea. Many thanks to Whiskey and Diamondback for the hard work, and for finding a creative solution to further customize our experiences without risking warez.

It's great to see xda members and mods maintaining such a balance and protecting the interests of both the devs and users simultaneously. Well done.
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8th July 2012, 11:48 AM |#9  
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Cheers for this!

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8th July 2012, 11:57 AM |#10  
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Thanks for the files!
8th July 2012, 12:36 PM |#11  
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OP Retired Developer Committee Lead / Retired Senior Moderator / Inactive Recognized Developer
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Thanks for the great feedback
One thing I'd like to ask for: If you are a themer and created a theme with this app, can you please post a link here so we can see waht awesome work done?
If you want I can also add you to the "example themes" section in the OP.
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