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The webOS 1.4 update brought many new and welcomed features. One such feature was the new app loading system. It brought immediate app launch feedback and gave a pleasant splash screen to make it seem as though apps were loading a lot faster.

The splash screen system has been generally quite well received, with only a small number of people not liking it.

Keen-eyed users may have noticed several webOS apps seemed to have customized splash screen.  Apps like the web browser, tasks, and the calculator (as shown in the screenshot to the right) have customized splash screens.

Metaview is one such keen observer. On his blog, he explains how easy it is to add custom splash screens to any app.  In fact, all developers need to do is create a 320x480px PNG background image and a 256x256px PNG icon image then add then to your app's appinfo.json file like:

"splashicon": "icon-256×256.png",
"splashBackground":"images/splash-screenshot-default.png",

Some might wonder why this neat new option is mysteriously absent from Palm's appinfo.json breakdown. Well, put simply, that page is a bit out of date. In fact, it still refers to "miniicon", when that was officially changed to "smallicon" a while ago.  It's very doubtful that using a custom splash screen in your app you cause any app submission guideline issues.

This is a neat bit of customization allowed on Palm's part. It'll certainly be interesting to see how creative developers can get in the future with their own splash graphics.