iOS7 comes with parallax backgrounds.

My questions are: Are these a standard file type? Does anybody know what it is?

Is there a process to create a custom one?



Thanks everyone - I was asking for both.

Edit - Someone has suggested that the dynamic backgrounds that are animated according to their programming are quartz composer files. Is it possible to write one of these yourself and upload it to the phone? What would the process for this be?

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    I think (not sure) all wallpapers are parallax now, if by that you mean the "moving about"/3D-effect. Also see here to get the dimensions right. – Keep these mind Sep 19 '13 at 12:02
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    iPhone will attempt to apply the parallax effect to any wallpaper. If you asking how to create your own Dynamic Wallpaper (as seen in the Settings app) please clarify. – tubedogg Sep 19 '13 at 12:16

You are confusing parallax and dynamic.

Parallax is the name given to the effect whereby a still image is moved in response to input at a greater or lesser extent than other on screen elements, to provide a sense of depth. The image used is just a static image file that is slightly larger than the screen size, to allow it to move slightly without introducing blank areas.

Dynamic backgrounds are the animated ones that move according to their programming, not just your input. I suspect they are simply quartz composer files like an OSX screensaver.


It looks like Apple doesn't specifically allow you to create dynamic backgrounds - but this developer has a demo of one working.


You can use any 'Still' image from your own images or one of your iPhone preset images to be used as a wallpaper. The parallax effect is than applied to that image, so you do not need a special image to get the parallax effect.

Besides the 'Still' wallpapers, you can also choose a 'Dynamic' wallpaper that iOS 7 provides. You can not use your own 'Dynamic' wallpaper.

If you want can turn of the parallex effect in your system settings (it is somewhat hidden).

Settings -> General -> Accessibility ->  Reduce Motion

(Note that the parallax effect is not available on the iPhone 4.)

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    "iPhone 5 or better": I think it also applies to the iPhone 4S (and a bunch of iPads: iPad 2, iPad mini, iPad 3 and iPad 4). See here. – Keep these mind Sep 19 '13 at 12:54
  • @aufkag, you are right. Do you know if this iPhone 4 restriction is for the 'Dynamic' wallpapers as well? – CousinCocaine Sep 19 '13 at 13:20
  • Apparently not. See here. Although that's an old post, and I think I see some wrong info there as well (filters for camera not for 4S?). – Keep these mind Sep 19 '13 at 13:30

To make a parallax wallpaper, just use an image 744 x 1392 pixels big. It'll work on iPhone 5+5c+5s.

  • What portion of the image will be visible on the screen? – Keen Sep 20 '13 at 15:27

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