The Best Phone Backgrounds

Switch up that default photo and set your lock screen to one of our favorite phone backgrounds.

iphone comparison
Complex News

The iPhone 8 could be bigger than the 7, but smaller than the 7 Plus. Image via Benjamin Geskin

iphone comparison

We pick up our phones hundreds of times per day. They’re there for us when we need them most—as long as you’re committed to keeping them charged up. Whether it’s to drop a fire meme into the group chat, post our latest and greatest fit pic, tweet out observations about our mundane real-life situations, or send an important email, our phones have become something of a close companion. When it’s not safely stowed away in your pants pocket, life seems to move in slow motion until it’s back where it belongs.

Considering that we now use our phones more than our computers, and pretty much any other device, it makes sense that we’d want them to at least look good as we swipe around the screen. The generic phone backgrounds that come pre-loaded never seem to be up to snuff, ranging from boring, washed-out bubbles to uninteresting rolling meadows that look straight out of a Microsoft XP user’s manual. So instead of relying on a perfect background finding you, it’s all on you to hunt down a background that fits you as much as it fits your phone.

While most of the photo will naturally be obstructed by dozens—if not hundreds—of icons, apps, and folders, backgrounds that are calming or at least abstract could do wonders for those harried moments when you have to respond to an extremely important message at a moment’s notice. And since you’ll see this background in short bursts between different apps, it should be something you won’t get sick of. Just like you should avoid setting your favorite song as your wake-up alarm in the morning, the same principle applies.

We used to methodically search for the perfect computer desktop photo, and nowadays we all need a reliable phone background to accompany us through the hours we spend staring at our screens. Look no further. Here are some of our favorites.

The Palms

best phone backgrounds the palms

Old Books

best phone backgrounds old books

Above The Mountains

best phone backgrounds above the mountains

The Northern Lights

best phone backgrounds above the northern lights


best phone backgrounds above stardust


best phone backgrounds above seaside

Hotline Bling

best phone backgrounds above hotline bling

Beneath The Ice

best phone backgrounds beneath the ice

Vice City

best phone backgrounds vice city

Grid Lines

best phone backgrounds grid lines

City Lights From Space

best phone backgrounds city lights from space


best phone backgrounds canyons

Antarctica from Space

best phone backgrounds antartica from space


best phone backgrounds moonwalk

Faded Roadway

best phone backgrounds faded roadway

Open Roadway

best phone backgrounds open roadway

Cobblestone Streets

best phone backgrounds cobblestone streets

Cherry Blossoms

best phone backgrounds cherry blossoms

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