It’s better to not have a splash screen at all than have one that looks dull and boring – that seems to be the general consensus among app designers. Wasting the precious few seconds that an app requires to load does not make sense though – and a good splash screen can use this time effectively, just like the following do.
When a user launches an app, the latter takes a few seconds to load (ideally, this time should not be more than 10 seconds). This time is generally utilized by most app developers for displaying a splash screen. Although there is a school of thought that splash screens tend to make an app ‘seem’ slow, there is no way of doubting the impression that they can potentially have on app-users. The key is to prepare a nice and interesting blend of pictures, symbols, colors, and other visual branding elements – to keep people from feeling bored (that’s right, even a few seconds of staring at a blank mobile screen can be boring!), as the application loads. Here are a few elegant and well-designed splash screen examples:
The splash screen on this mobile app focuses chiefly on increasing the familiarity of the company logo with users. The bright orange background is eye-catching, and the logo has been cleverly put right at the center. The glowing effect around the logo is an interesting addition too.
This one stands out due to its smart yet informal nature. UI/UX designers from mobile app companies should note how the loading progress of the application is displayed on this screen – lending it a dynamic feel. The image used is practically child-like, with the wordplay in the caption (‘make a weesh’) adding to its charm. Understated, but interesting!
If you like to play around with the texture of mobile app splash screens, this would be the perfect example for you. The jet-black background has only the app name and the caption at the center, but never looks too plain. The tagline used on the screen also gives users a notion of what the app in particular, and the company in general, is all about.
The Evernote mobile application has legions of users – and the splash screen does its bit to keep people interested. The lively green color of the background has an immediate drawing-in effect, with only the app-symbol (not even the name) being displayed. The makers have put in a collage of icons in the background, which, in a way, promotes some of their other smartphone applications.
On first sight, the splash screen of the Forkly app might remind you of a blackboard. It’s a deliberate ploy on the part of the mobile app developers to use chalk effects on the screen – and this strategy does lend a ‘different’ feel to Forkly’s startup. The font and background texture contrast well. The tagline chosen is informative without trying to be too clever.
The collage of images, featuring happy faces, is the high point of the splash screen of Zaarly – a mobile buying application. A one-line text is enough to let users know what to expect from the app, and the logo (in the stylized ‘Z’) is seamlessly displayed. The blue background ensures that all the photos are easily viewable.The trademark sign indicates that the makers are aware of their intellectual property rights as well!
A dedicated video app should have an interesting introductory screen, and Vimeo does not come up short in this regard. The simplistic, colorful illustrations on the splash screen makes it almost look like a mobile app for kids. The choice of colors is very smart, and the overall display has a sort of warm, welcoming effect. Short and sweet would be the best way to describe this screen.
The developers of the Blip Me application has played around with fancy text styles – and to good effect. The wooden texture (on the lower portion of the background) is particularly innovative, as is the way in which the space between the two words is utilized. It’s an Android app that operates almost like a walkie-talkie, and people can get an idea about that directly from the screen.
This group image-sharing application is somewhat similar in its functionality to our very own ‘Speedy Snap’ app. What’s noticeable in this splash screen is the different texture used for the title of the app. The light background complements the text and the rather playful logo nicely. There’s a quietly efficient feel about this one.
Newbies from iPhone app development companies can take a cue from Cloudee, to get an idea of how to create splash screens that are in sync with the nature of the concerned applications. Cloudee facilitates quick and easy video-sharing on the cloud network – hence the name – and the splash screen displays images of nice little clouds. The color is varied, to prevent any sort of monotony. The way in which every cloud overlaps the one next to it is worth noticing too.
The great thing about this drink-buying Android and iPhone app is its simplicity and subtle elegance. The gradient color beautifully changes from purple to blue – giving the screen a cool ‘pop-out’ effect. Nothing except the name of the application is displayed at the center, while at the bottom there is a punchline (admittedly, it looks like a line out of any teen movie!). If the tagline had been something a bit more imaginative, the screen would have been truly outstanding.
Weather of Olympus (WOO)
If you like to get weather updates on your mobile, you might have already tried this popular Android application. Its splash screen has a bright yellow hue – but what’s more interesting is the icon at the center, which immediately piques the interest of users. The gradient and texture are uniform, and load time is relatively short.
Nike correctly assumes that anyone who is not familiar with the famous ‘tick’ sign of its logo is practically living in the Stone Age. It does not bother putting the brand name on the mobile splash screen – and focuses on enhancing the display effects instead. The red background is the perfect contrast with the white logo at the center. Also of note is how the mobile app designers have showcased running tracks in the lower portion of the screen.
Lift is promoted as a mobile coaching app, and its splash screen is nicely indicative of its overall functionality. The punchline ‘Unlock Your Potential’ both intrigues as well as motivates users, as they wait for the app to load. The white vertical stripes combine very well with the light blue color. The choice of font for the app-name deserves a special mention as well. It’s elegant, without coming across as too frivolous or difficult-to-read.
There are plenty of cooking apps created by mobile companies across the world – so why does iSpice stand out? The most important factor would be its splash screen, which has the image of an interestingly curled up red chilli! On the two sides, different spices are displayed – one of a light and the other of a dark shade (which works wonders as a contrast). iSpice is all about ‘spicy’ cooking, and launching the app immediately gives smartphone-owners an idea about that!
The reviews of the Lemon Wallet app are not uniformly positive, but its splash screen is nothing short of awesome. The feel of an actual leather wallet is captured in the screen, via the stitch displays and the overall texture. The logo – bright, large, and clear – sits proudly at the center, with the name and the tagline of the app beneath it. Our ‘My Budget Tracker’ application has a somewhat similar look and feel in its splash screen.
When it comes to professionalism and neat efficiency, few mobile app splash screens can rival that of the Paypal application (note how the name is embedded in the screen). FlipBoard and National Parks would win brownie points for the lively themes in their startup screens. Among location-based mobile applications, LocalHero and Pocket Navigator (that’s from our own portfolio) offer contrasting, yet equally interesting introduction pages. We offered some handy tips on splash screen designing sometime back, and together with these examples – they should serve as really handy references for creating smart, interesting startups for your mobile apps.
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