Start Screen Background Apps

Spice up your Windows Phone 8.1 Start Screen with OneStart

No Cyan until September

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New phone alert

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Lumia 520 and 925 on AT&T finally get Cyan and 8.1


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Want the Lumia Cyan update? You need to downgrade your phone first.

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Demo of the Animated Lock Screen for 8.1

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Preview for Developers users need to rollback for Cyan

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Cortana showing a stock chart is a nice touch on Windows Phone 8.1


Theme+ lets you create some vivid and colorful backgrounds for Windows Phone 8.1


With the release of Windows Phone 8.1, under the Preview for Developers program, we have seen a number of apps surface in the Windows Phone Store focused on creating custom Start Screen backgrounds. Each app seems to follow the same pattern of having a simple interface and plenty of creative styles.

Theme+ is one of the more recent additions to this genre of apps and falls in line with those that have come before. Theme+ has a simple interface that allows you to create custom designs that can add a dash of color to your Windows Phone 8.1 Start Screen.

The interface for Theme+ has a preview of your background image and two colored dots lining up next to it. To change the color pattern, tap on one of the dots to pull up the color palette, which includes forty-one color choices.

Theme+ Screens

Once you have your colors picked, you can side swipe at the preview to change up the design pattern, which has ten options to consider. At the bottom of the screen are two control buttons, one to preview the pattern on a simulated Start Screen and another to save the pattern.

Once saved, you can go into your Windows Phone 8.1 settings under the Start+Theme options and set your Start Screen background image to your Theme+ creation.

Theme+ is another option worth considering to give your Windows Phone 8.1 Start Screen a splash of color. I wouldn't mind seeing additional patterns to choose from other than the diamonds/angles though.

Theme+ is currently a free app but only for a limited time (not sure how long a limited time is) and you can find your copy of Theme+ here in the Windows Phone Store.

QR: Theme+



There are 27 comments. Sign in to comment

rockstarzzz says:

Theme apps are to 2014, what Weather apps were to 2013. Too many.

sholokov says:

Looks like this article came after a comment by one user about the backgrounds WPC guys use. Or is it just a coincidence?

Sahil Kutty says:

Yea I also thought the same

avigyan says:

Yeah I had commented on George's article asking him about the background images he used and he seemed to be using this!

Thanks for the coverage, George! I'm working on new patterns and features for an upcoming update, so keep checking.

SenneVc says:

I love the app,

but is it me or are the patterns a bit low-res?

At least on my lumia 925.

The images generated are high-resolution (you can check by transferring them to a PC, for instance); the problem is that the OS compresses them when applied as a background. It happens with every picture, but some color combinations look worse, for some reason.

Please vote on this thread so Microsoft corrects the problem.

SenneVc says:

Oh, that's a shame, voted! 

Constantin15 says:

This is perfect for me. Looking forward for new features. :D

rain620 says:

I created a "customisation" folder for this kind of app, together with transparent tiles, transparent icons, polyscreen, etc.
Kudos to the developers who help us beautify our start screens.

BonomDenej says:

The far left screenshot makes it looks WP7-esque... Nostalgia'd.

This should ve been default in WP8 where you pick accent. Very limited colours out there. With 8.1 when you can set a picture, this app is unnecessary. Very few users are going to use this.

immyperez says:

Can't wait to get 8.1!!!

Natebird says:

It's very simple to get it now

immyperez says:

Yeah but I don't want to void my warranty... and I would prefer it with the firmware too including any bug fixes.

Cool app, but limited designs. Need more patterns and colors.

bawajose says:

I just took a snap of my kid's "building blocks" and it looks awesome.... so never had to use such apps :-)

Sorry guys but, horrible themes and app.

fga100 says:

That this case is that you use the phone?

Ixia says:

I think it's the Nokia wireless charging case for the 1020.

Eroneko says:

I... Love...... Windows Phone!!! (read with Ballmer's voice)

BlackGoku says:

I want an app that could allow a fully transparent background wallpaper to be visible.Though some apps allow some transparency over non-transparent tiles,still a fully transparent background wallpaper would be awesome.