Will Apple allow Custom Dynamic Wallpapers in iOS 7? Here’s a proof of concept


One of the major new features in iOS 7 in the looks department is the dynamic or live wallpaper.

As of now, iOS 7 betas come with just two dynamic wallpapers with a bubble design, and with slightly different colorations. The animation in these wallpapers is quite subtle, however, bubbles also move based on the device’s accelerometer. So you can move the bubbles in any direction by titling your device.

It looks pretty cool, but it is unclear if Apple will allow third-party developers to create custom dynamic wallpapers.

Developer Hamza Sood has created a proof of concept custom dynamic wallpaper using iOS 7 SDK. He explains:

Dynamic wallpapers are stored in bundles which get loaded into SpringBoard, located at /System/Library/ProceduralWallpaper.

A bundle declares the class name for each dynamic wallpaper it contains via the key “SBProceduralWallpaperClassNames” in its Info.plist file (The expected value for that key is an array, so bundles can contain multiple dynamic wallpapers)

Each class representing a dynamic wallpaper must conform to the “SBFProceduralWallpaper” protocol, which is declared in a private framework called “SpringBoardFoundation”. The view returned via this protocol is what is actually displayed on screen. For convenience, SpringBoardFoundation contains a class called “SBFProceduralWallpaper”: a UIView subclass which returns itself for the view to be displayed.

Sood says it’s a “completely ridiculous” proof of concept, but it reminds us of the potential of the feature. It is quite possible that Apple will launch a new section in the App Store to allow users to download paid or free dynamic wallpapers, though there are no clues available at the moment which indicate it, as even Sood has used private APIs in his proof of concept.

Jailbreak developers could use this private framework to create live wallpapers, and release them on Cydia. We had already seen quite a bit on interest on that front for tweaks such as LiveWallpaper, LivePapers even before iOS 7 was unveiled.

We really hope Apple opens it up to third-party developers either ways as it would really help in unlocking the potential of the feature. It would be a pity that hundreds of millions of iOS users will be stuck with just the bubble dynamic wallpapers. And more importantly, live wallpapers have been available on Android for quite sometime.

Let us know what you think in the comments.

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Categories: Dynamic Wallpapers, iOS 7

  • Dj4beat

    The big song and dance made of this feature is a joke, it adds very little to IOS 7.

    On thr subject if IOS 7,
    At least beta 3 is useable, unlike 1&2 but if this is the “future” i’d recommend apple shareholders to sell now before this hits the general public.

    No great new ideas,just cherry picked cydia features.

    • Gautam

      We have got to a point where the mobile operating platforms have matured to level where we may not see many significant new features. This is not just the case with iOS, but Android too.

      • bamboo7

        That’s a pretty lazy statement. I mean why innovate anymore.

    • Jessica Darko

      This is why non-developers like you shouldn’t install developer betas. You don’t know what you’re doing, even enough to evaluate what you’re looking at.

      Idiots like you have been recommending that Apple Shareholders sell after every major product announcement….like the iPod, the iPad, the iPhone.

      your track record speaks for itself. The problem is, you will never learn, and someone inexperienced might listen to your advice. Shame on you!

  • Casey Threadgill

    you know you can make your own dynamic wallpapers with a panoramic photo right? You make a panorama with the camera app, set it as a wallpaper and the accelerometer will let you move through the picture.

    • http://www.iphonehacks.com iPhoneHacks

      We are referring to the animated wallpaper here and not Panoramic wallpapers. We are aware you can set those.

      • Me

        Final build removed this feature.

  • l0keman

    This article is about 6 months after everyone else has had hands on with IOS7 and is written like it’s a rumor and not a fact that has already been out for 6 months.

    • http://www.iphonehacks.com iPhoneHacks

      And you commenting after six months? Pointless!

    • TheAppleFanatic

      It’s been out for 2, try again troll.

  • :)

    Yeah i could go for costume dynamic wallpaper. It would help me get a date with that one girl at school

  • Bezo

    It will definitely be a breath of fresh air for apple to allow that custom feature! Thus the name “I” phone. Its mine lety me tweak it for meeeeeeeee! LMAO Great job Apple so far! Im loving the new IOS 7!!!

  • Andrew Steel

    Live wallpapers have been on android the whole time. I hope apple follows this path fully in ios7.

  •  George.iP5 Ⓜ️ •

    We’ll I hope it’s just be like that for beta testing and that they’ll bring back the live panorama wallpapers in iOS 7 Gold-master. Would be nice to see a custom color for the time, date, slide unlock, notification centre and control centre pull up and camera.

  • Guest3453453

    This is one of the MAIN things for ME that’s been missing from iOS that Android had…that and the small screens :/

    • Mario Tello

      Live wallpapers could have been the main reason why a person like me might have jail broken their phone. So I definitely agree.
      But a larger screen? I’m ok with the current. I have a larger screen on my iPad mini.

  • Mario Tello

    Allowing other parties to develop dynamic wallpapers and making them available through App Store is only fair apple.

  • Aidan

    Don’t know wether Tim Cook will understand customer requirement or not

  • http://www.thelle.dk/ Thelle Hedegaard Kristensen

    Any updates on this? Hope they’ll open it up :)