Windows Phone 8: Helpful Tips And Tricks


The Windows Phone 8 operating system is packed with a plethora of features and functionalities that can enhance your mobile experience. Whether you’re a new user exploring the world of Windows Phone or a seasoned pro looking to uncover hidden gems, this article will provide you with helpful tips and tricks to make the most out of your device.

From customizing your home screen and managing notifications to maximizing battery life and optimizing performance, we’ll cover a wide range of topics to ensure that you can navigate and utilize your Windows Phone 8 with ease. So, grab your device and get ready to discover how to unlock the full potential of your Windows Phone 8!

Inside This Article

  1. Customizing the Start Screen
  2. Mastering Live Tiles
  3. Navigating the App Drawer
  4. Maximizing Battery Life
  5. Conclusion
  6. FAQs

Customizing the Start Screen

The Start Screen on Windows Phone 8 allows you to personalize your device and make it truly yours. Here are some tips and tricks to help you customize your Start Screen to fit your style and needs.

1. Resize and rearrange tiles: One of the unique features of Windows Phone 8 is the ability to resize and rearrange tiles on the Start Screen. To resize a tile, simply press and hold it, then select the “resize” option. You can choose between three different sizes: small, medium, and large. To rearrange tiles, press and hold a tile, then drag it to the desired position.

2. Pin apps and contacts to the Start Screen: To quickly access your favorite apps and contacts, you can pin them to the Start Screen. Simply find the app or contact in the app drawer or People Hub, press and hold it, then select “pin to Start.” The pinned app or contact will appear as a tile on your Start Screen for easy access.

3. Create folders: If you have a lot of apps and want to keep your Start Screen organized, you can create folders. To create a folder, press and hold a tile, then drag it on top of another tile. This will create a folder with both tiles inside. You can then rename the folder and add more tiles to it by dragging them into the folder.

4. Customize the background: Windows Phone 8 allows you to change the background of your Start Screen. To do this, go to Settings > Start + Theme and select the desired background. You can choose from a variety of colors, as well as set a custom background using a photo from your gallery.

5. Show more tiles: By default, Windows Phone 8 only displays two columns of tiles on the Start Screen. However, if you have a larger screen, you can enable the “show more tiles” option to display three columns. To do this, go to Settings > Start + Theme and toggle the “show more tiles” option.

Customizing the Start Screen is a great way to make your Windows Phone 8 device reflect your personality and preferences. Whether it’s resizing tiles, pinning apps and contacts, creating folders, changing the background, or showing more tiles, take the time to customize your Start Screen and create a unique user experience.

Mastering Live Tiles

One of the standout features of Windows Phone 8 is its customizable Live Tiles. These dynamic tiles display real-time information on your phone’s home screen, making it easy to stay updated without even opening an app. Here are some tips and tricks to help you make the most of Live Tiles:

Pinning and resizing tiles: To pin a tile to your home screen, simply find the app in the app list, press and hold it, and select “Pin to Start.” You can then resize the tile to your preferred size by tapping and holding it, then adjusting the size using the arrows at the bottom of the screen.

Organizing and rearranging tiles: To rearrange your Live Tiles, press and hold a tile, then drag it to your desired location. You can also create custom groups by dragging one tile on top of another, then giving the group a name. This allows you to keep your home screen organized and easily accessible.

Customizing tile appearance: Windows Phone 8 offers a range of customization options for Live Tiles. You can change the background color, choose a smaller or larger tile size, and even opt for a “double wide” tile that displays more information. To access these options, simply tap and hold a tile, then select “Resize” or “Tile options.”

Adding and removing Live Tiles: In addition to pre-installed apps, you can also add Live Tiles for your favorite apps and games. To add a Live Tile for a new app, go to the app list, press and hold the app, and select “Pin to Start.” To remove a Live Tile, press and hold it, then select “Unpin from Start.” This allows you to customize your home screen according to your preferences.

Interacting with Live Tiles: Live Tiles can be more than just information displays. Depending on the app, you can often interact with the tiles directly. For example, a weather app may allow you to swipe on the tile to view the forecast, or a messaging app may show previews of new messages. Explore the options available for each app and make use of these interactive features.

Personalizing your Lock Screen: While Live Tiles bring life to your home screen, the Lock Screen also offers customization options. You can choose a custom image or slideshow as the background, and even display app notifications and detailed status updates. To personalize your Lock Screen, go to Settings > Personalization > Lock Screen.

By mastering Live Tiles, you can make your Windows Phone 8 experience more efficient and personalized. Take advantage of these tips and tricks to create a home screen that suits your style and keeps you informed at a glance.

Navigating the App Drawer

One of the key features of the Windows Phone 8 operating system is its intuitive and user-friendly app drawer. The app drawer, also known as the app list or the all apps view, is where all the applications on your device are stored.

To access the app drawer, simply swipe from right to left on the Start Screen of your Windows Phone. This will reveal the complete list of apps installed on your device.

Once you are in the app drawer, you can navigate through the list by swiping vertically. Scroll up or down to find the specific app you are looking for. Alternatively, you can use the alphabet jump list on the right-hand side of the screen to quickly jump to a specific letter and find apps starting with that letter.

If you have a large number of apps installed on your device, you might find it challenging to locate a specific app. In such cases, you can use the search bar at the top of the app drawer to quickly search for an app by its name. Simply start typing the name of the app, and the search results will automatically update as you type.

In addition to searching for apps by name, you can also filter your app list by category. To do this, tap on the category headings such as “Games,” “Social,” or “Productivity” at the top of the app drawer. This will display a list of apps belonging to that specific category, making it easier to find apps based on their functionality.

Once you have located the app you want to open, simply tap on its icon to launch it. If you want to customize the order of apps in the app drawer, you can press and hold on an app icon, then drag and drop it to a different position.

It’s important to note that the app drawer in Windows Phone 8 is not customizable in terms of its layout or appearance. Unlike some other mobile operating systems, you cannot create folders or rearrange the order of apps within the app drawer itself. However, you have the flexibility to customize your Start Screen by pinning your favorite apps as Live Tiles for quick access.

Maximizing Battery Life

One of the biggest concerns for smartphone users is battery life. With all the features and apps that run in the background, it’s no wonder that battery drains quickly. However, there are some effective strategies you can employ to maximize your phone’s battery life and ensure that it lasts throughout the day. Here are some helpful tips:

  1. Adjust screen brightness: Your phone’s screen brightness can have a significant impact on battery life. Lowering the brightness level or setting it to auto-brightness can help conserve power.
  2. Enable power-saving mode: Most Android phones come with a power-saving mode that can be enabled in settings. This feature optimizes various settings such as CPU speed, screen brightness, and background activity to extend battery life.
  3. Disable unnecessary notifications: Notifications from apps constantly push data and drain your battery. Review your notification settings and disable unnecessary ones to minimize the impact on your battery.
  4. Identify battery-draining apps: Some apps, especially poorly optimized ones, can drain your battery faster than others. Keep an eye on the battery usage section in your phone’s settings to identify such apps and consider either uninstalling or restricting their background activity.
  5. Limit background app refresh: Many apps continue to run in the background and update their content even when you’re not using them. Go to your phone’s settings and restrict background app refresh for certain apps to conserve battery.
  6. Turn off unnecessary connectivity options: Disabled unused connectivity options like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and NFC when not in use. These features constantly search for connections and consume battery power even when not actively used.
  7. Manage your location services: Location services, such as GPS, can be a major drain on your battery. Disable location services or enable it only when necessary to reduce battery usage.
  8. Optimize app settings: Some apps have power-hungry settings that you can adjust to improve battery life. For example, reducing the frequency of email syncing or disabling auto-update for certain apps can help conserve battery power.
  9. Keep your phone software up to date: Manufacturers often release software updates that include battery optimizations. Make sure to keep your phone’s software up to date to take advantage of these improvements.
  10. Invest in a quality charger and cable: Using a quality charger and cable for charging your phone can help ensure that it charges efficiently. Avoid using cheap or counterfeit chargers, as they may not provide the optimal charging capabilities.

By implementing these strategies, you can significantly extend your Android phone’s battery life and stay connected throughout the day without worrying about running out of power.


In conclusion, Windows Phone 8 offers users a plethora of helpful tips and tricks to enhance their overall experience with the platform. From customization options to productivity features, Windows Phone 8 has something for everyone.

Through this article, we have explored various ways to make the most out of your Windows Phone 8 device. Whether it’s utilizing the Live Tiles, maximizing battery life, or maximizing productivity with Cortana, these tips and tricks can significantly improve your day-to-day usage.

By following these suggestions, you can unlock the full potential of your Windows Phone 8 device and make your smartphone experience seamless and enjoyable. Whether you’re a new user or a Windows Phone veteran, take advantage of these tips and tricks to optimize your device’s performance and get the most out of your Windows Phone 8 experience.


  • Q: What are the key features of Windows Phone 8?
  • Windows Phone 8 comes with a range of exciting features, including live tiles that provide real-time updates on the home screen, a customizable start screen, a powerful digital assistant called Cortana, seamless integration with Microsoft services like Office and OneDrive, and a smooth and intuitive user interface.

  • Q: How do I personalize my Windows Phone 8?
  • Personalizing your Windows Phone 8 is easy. Simply go to the settings menu and choose “personalization.” Here, you can customize your device by changing the background image, rearranging the live tiles on the start screen, and selecting a theme color that suits your style.

  • Q: Can I install third-party apps on Windows Phone 8?
  • Absolutely! Windows Phone 8 has a wide range of apps available in the Microsoft Store. You can browse through various categories like games, productivity, social networking, and more to find and install the apps that best suit your needs. Simply open the Store app, search for the desired app, and follow the prompts to download and install it on your phone.

  • Q: How do I transfer data from my old phone to my new Windows Phone 8?
  • To transfer data from your old phone to your new Windows Phone 8, you can use the built-in “Transfer my Data” app. This app allows you to transfer contacts, text messages, pictures, music, and more from your previous device to your new Windows Phone 8. Simply download and open the app, follow the instructions, and select the data you want to transfer.

  • Q: Can I sync my Windows Phone 8 with other devices?
  • Absolutely! Windows Phone 8 offers seamless integration with other devices through various syncing options. You can sync your phone with your computer to transfer files, sync your email, contacts, and calendar with your Microsoft account, and even sync photos and videos to the cloud using OneDrive. This allows you to access your data across multiple devices, ensuring a seamless and connected experience.