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I'm trying to set the wallpaper on my Nexus7, and no matter what I try, the blue "crop" widget that lets you specify the area of the image that is the wallpaper is always in the wrong orientation. So when I make this widget as large as possible, it's only covering part of the image. The image size is 1280x800, so I should be able to use the whole image, but I can't because it seems to be always getting the orientation wrong. I've tried rotating it, this doesn't seem to make a difference. The resize widget is always the opposite of what I want it to be. It's almost as if it's detecting the image's aspect ratio and doing the opposite of what it should be doing. I've made sure the image doesn't contain any meta data which could be specifying another orientation. I'm sure there must be something I'm misunderstanding about how this widget works. It's driving me nuts though!

I've attached a screenshot to make it more clear what I mean:

enter image description here

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This looks like it's the proper behavior. Android scrolls wallpapers by default. A device with a 1280x800 screen resolution will need a wallpaper of that is much wider in order for it to fit 1-to-1. See What is the default resolution of a wallpaper that fits the homescreen exactly in an Android phone? – eldarerathis Feb 6 '13 at 22:29
Thanks for that. That link links to a lifehacker article that explains it really well:… If you put your comment as an answer, then I'll mark it as the answer so you get the rep. – Dan Feb 6 '13 at 23:31
up vote 1 down vote accepted

It looks like what you're describing is actually the proper behavior, though it's not particularly obvious why that's the case.

Android, by default, scrolls your wallpaper to the left and right when you swipe around your home screen. This means that there's a sort of "virtual" desktop that represents the collection of your home screen pages, and it is (basically by definition) larger than the screen's resolution. The general rule is that the resolution of the virtual desktop will be 2x wider than the screen's physical resolution, but the height will be the same.

Therefore, when Android is cropping your image for your 1280x800 screen, it's actually attempting to create a wallpaper with an aspect ratio that lines up with your 1280x1600 virtual desktop. Thus, if the image you use is 1280x800 (like your screen), it will be cropped and scaled in the process.

If you'd like to make a wallpaper that fits the sizing of your virtual desktop without any cropping, What is the default resolution of a wallpaper that fits the homescreen exactly in an Android phone? contains some useful links and resources.

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