Weekend Coder: App Name, icon, and splash screen

By Brian Scheirer on 20 Oct 2013 02:52 pm EDT
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Three important aspects of your BlackBerry app are the name, icon and the splash screen (also known as the loading screen). They are the first three things a user will see when launching your app so they are important to have. The name will appear below the icon. The icon is the face of your app when users are browsing BlackBerry World or once downloaded in their grid of icons. The splash screen is the first thing shown when a user launches your app.

App Name

To change the name of your Cascades BB10 app (by default it will be the name of your project), edit the bar-descriptor.xml file. You either adjust it on Applications tab (see image below) or in the Source add the tag: <name>My App Name</name>

Icon and Splash Screen

The default icon is a generic box icon and you would never want that. As for the splash screen, it is a dark gray background and says "BlackBerry" which looks something like this:

I see many apps use this and look fine. But its nice to greet your user with something unique. Or another good tactic is to have the splash screen the same background as your app's UI so it gives the illusion of your app loading faster than it does.

Just like the app name, these can also easily be changed in the bar-descriptor.xml file shown below:



Click on the "Application" tab (circled in green) then select an image for the icon (boxed in red) and splash screen image (boxed in blue). To select images click on the "add" button. In the popup you can either choose to select an image from your workspace (meaning it is in the project) or from the file system in your computer.  Once you have selected the appropriate image(s) it will appear in the path/size list.

Or for the purist you can add code into the the Source tab of the bar-descriptor.xml file using <icon></icon> and <splashScreens></splashScreens> tags.

Icons should be 114x114 pixels for Z10, Q5, and Q10 and 94x94 pixels for Z30. Splash screens will be device dependent so I currently only have one loaded for the Z10 (1280x768). For splash screens to be loaded in portrait mode they should be 768 pixels wide by 1280 pixels tall.  For splash screens to be loaded in landscape mode they should be 1280 pixels wide by 768 pixels tall. If I wanted different ones for the Q5/10, then I'd need add a 720x720 image. Similarly, for the Z30, a 1280x720 image.

Reader comments

Weekend Coder: App Name, icon, and splash screen

30 Comments

Great tip, thanks. I'm trying to be a developer as well but I have problems loading the cascade compiler on to my computer. Do you also have any tips for that? Thanks in advance.

Posted via CB10

no, but you can use the 'blackberry text' as (short) splashscreen and than display your own screen in your app

Put all the processing(or a QTimer) you need to do in the ApplicationUI constructor but extending the time is something that you shouldn't do, users want apps that open fast lol

It would've been much more interesting post if it discussed the making of app name, icon, and splash screen. From end users and developers perspective.

Maybe the topic of your next post? Pretty please :)?

Posted via CB10

Great series of posts! Thanks Brian!

Swiped with one thumb from the virtual keyboard of my awesome Z10!

Easy there, troll, you knew you couldn't get into programming with poor reasoning skills.

Posted via CB10

Thank you for the article, I'm working on an app and managed to figure out most of these things, but I'd love to see more articles like this one, dealing with basics like navigating between sheets and format the navigation bar.

Posted via CB10 using my Zed Ten

Speaking of app coding, anyone else's CB app getting hard to refresh? I have to pull down very far and multiple times to get it to refresh now...

Posted without the aid of AutoCorrect with my physical keyboard via CB10