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Definition: wallpaper


A pattern or picture used to represent the desktop surface in a graphical user interface (GUI). Also called the "background," many wallpaper options come with each operating system, such as a single image or random images from one of the user's folders. Smartphones also allow a variety of backgrounds to be used on the home screens.

Live Wallpaper
Live wallpaper renders some moving object or continuous scene change for people who like the glitz of animation. However, in a portable device, live wallpaper is a battery drain.

Why Cover a Desktop with Wallpaper?
Years ago, someone who had too many sleepless nights programming must have thought it a great analogy because a screen desktop is vertical like a wall. Starting with Windows XP, Microsoft decided to end the mystery and just call it "Background." See desktop and screen saver.