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Android Cinematic wallpapers: Here’s how to use them

Give your wallpapers a bit of life!

Published onMay 13, 2024

Are you trying to upgrade the way your smartphone’s home screen looks? Normal wallpapers are great, but Google has something else for those who want to be a bit more adventurous when changing their wallpapers. Today, we’ll tell you all about Android Cinematic wallpapers, which started rolling out to devices on June 13, 2023.

Just remember that Cinematic wallpapers are only coming to Pixel 6 or newer Pixel phones for now.


To make an Android Cinematic wallpaper, go to Settings > Wallpaper & style > More wallpapers. Pick your photo of preference, and tap on the sparkle icon on the preview page. Hit the checkmark icon when done.


Editor’s note: We used a Google Pixel 7 running Android 14 to formulate these steps. Keep in mind some of the steps may differ depending on your device and software version.

What are Android Cinematic wallpapers?

Android Cinematic wallpapers were announced at Google I/O 2023, along with Generative AI wallpapers and Emoji wallpapers. In the case of Cinematic wallpapers, the feature allows you to take any image you already have and turn it into a more dynamic 3D image to show off on your screen.

Cinematic wallpapers use on-device machine learning to analyze an image and separate the subject from the background. This creates the depth effect required for one of these moving wallpapers.

Here’s a demo from Google:

How to make Cinematic wallpapers on Android

If you’re ready to start experimenting with Cinematic wallpapers, and have a compatible device, you can follow the next steps to make Cinematic wallpapers on Android.

  1. Launch the Settings app.
  2. Go into Wallpaper & style.
  3. Hit More wallpapers.
  4. Find and select the photo you want to use as a wallpaper.
  5. In the wallpaper preview, you will see a sparkle icon in the top-right corner. Tap on it.
  6. Toggle on Create Cinematic wallpaper.
  7. When done, hit the Set Wallpaper button.
  8. Select whether you want to use it for your Home screen, Lock screen, or Home and lock screens.

Are Cinematic wallpapers coming to non-pixel devices

For now, Cinematic wallpapers are a Pixel-only feature. Google’s exact wording is that these are coming “first to Pixel devices.” This is letting us know the features should officially make it to other devices at some point. We’re not sure how long it will take to reach other phones.


A Cinematic wallpaper takes an image and separates the background from the subject using AI. The wallpaper will have a depth effect and 3D look that will react to movement. Live wallpapers are more like videos. However, some can react to gestures and general phone activity. But these need to be created from scratch and aren’t simply made from an image, like Cinematic wallpapers are.

Yes. Google specifies any photo can become a Cinematic wallpaper.

Cinematic is only available for Pixel 6 or newer Pixel devices. It might reach other handsets at some point, though.

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