At the I/O 2023, Google went all in with AI. But it’s the AI-generated wallpapers feature that must have stood out for display customization freaks. Sure, AI image generators aren’t such a novel thing at this point. However, with the Pixel 8 AI Wallpaper, Google takes things a notch higher compared to what you can already do under Wallpaper & style.

The AI Wallpaper on the Pixel 8 is quite easy to use. To access it, press and hold on your home screen, tap on Wallpaper & style > More wallpapers > AI wallpaper. From here, you can choose a theme from several options such as Imaginary, Mineral, Texture, Night, Terrain and Volcanic. When you tap on a category, you can further customize your preferred wallpaper from the prompt that shows up. The tool will then generate a different wallpaper with each combination of words that you feed it.

Even better is that you also get multiple wallpapers to pick from with each prompt. But for some reason, several Pixel 8 and 8 Pro owners are registering a completely different experience with the AI Wallpaper feature. Rather than generate an image as expected, the AI Wallpaper is not working as expected for Pixel 8 owners. Instead, it crashes and returns an error message that says “Couldn’t load images.”

Image by Ben1805 on Pixel community forum

Now, the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro are just getting into more hands having started shipping last week. However, there are already tens of reports in the Google Pixel community about the AI Wallpaper not working or crashing. The Pixel community on Reddit and X is also reporting the same experience, which suggests it could be a widespread problem only that the phones haven’t reached many people.

Pixel 8 AI Wallpaper glitch has a potential workaround

The AI Wallpaper feature on the Pixel 8 wasn’t broken out of the box. In fact, it was working fine for some, but things went haywire after some time. Whether this is due to an update is still unclear, but it seems some people have already found a way around the bug.

One of those affected claims the AI Wallpaper crashes for them only when animations are turned off. Turning them on should take care of the problem. Go to Setting > Accessibility > Color and Motion > Remove animations to make the change.


Another user deleted all app data from the AI wallpaper and Wallpaper and style to address this issue, so you can also try your luck.

AI Wallpaper bug escalated

A forum product expert took the matter up the chain of command for further investigation, so you can expect an official statement sooner or later. We will let you know when Google responds.


Android 14 broke daily wallpapers

In a related case, multiple Google Pixel owners are also reporting that daily wallpapers are broken after the update to Android 14. There’s a long thread in the Pixel subreddit highlighting this issue, which affects all Pixel models that got updated to the new OS.

Typically, when you tap on a wallpaper category and then the slideshow button in the top right corner, you get a new wallpaper with new colors every day. This wallpaper can be applied to both the home and lock screen. But since the update to Android 14, it appears that the daily wallpaper feature is not working properly on some Google Pixel phones. Instead, you can only apply it to either the home or lock screen but not both. Doing the latter gives you the same picture that often desyncs since one fails to update.


Furthermore, setting a live wallpaper and then a slideshow for the home screen turns the lock screen black. Also, setting a home screen image wallpaper and then a slideshow doesn’t change the home screen and apply the slideshow to the lock screen, which shouldn’t be the case.

From the look of it, the daily wallpaper stopped working after Android 14 beta. There are a couple of bug reports in the Google Issue Tracker to confirm this. Fortunately, the issue has recently been escalated to the engineering team for further investigation.


Featured image: Google

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Hillary Keverenge
2100 Posts

Tech has been my playground for over a decade. While the Android journey began early, it truly took flight with the revolutionary Lollipop update. Since then, it's been a parade of Android devices (with a sprinkle of iOS), culminating in a mostly happy marriage with Google's smart home ecosystem. Expect insightful articles and explorations of the ever-evolving world of Android and Google products coupled with occasional rants on the Nest smart home ecosystem.

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