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 early windows phone updates

Step-by-Step Guide: Get Early Windows Phone Software Updates (Developer Preview)

Do you have a Windows Phone and are you ready to be a part of the crowd who gets to try the new features out first? You are in luck! The option to do this is available to anyone who owns a Windows Phone! By taking a few easy steps, you will be setup and ready to have the newest updates pushed straight to your Windows Phone from Microsoft! 

Disclaimer (there always is one)

This is a guide to walk you through the steps to unlock your phone and become a part of the developers preview program. By unlocking your phone, you do take on all risks and potential problems that go along with it.

A short list of potential risks that Microsoft wants you to consider before taking the steps to unlock your phone (
  • You might void any warranty from your mobile operator and OEM. Contact your mobile operator if you’re concerned about any repercussions.
  • A preview update only includes the Microsoft portion of the update; mobile operator and OEM driver updates will be available when the official update for your phone is available. This means that operating system updates haven’t gone through all of the detailed testing with regards to your phone’s mobile service and hardware, so you might experience some bugs.
  • After you update your phone to a preview version of the operating system, you can’t go back to a previous released version of the operating system. When the new operating system is released to the public, you’ll get the update on your phone, but there’s no going back before then.

What is the Developer Preview & Why Do You Care?

The Windows Phone Developer Preview is a software preview of upcoming updates to the Windows Phone Operating System and its features for developers. In this case, it is for anyone, try out, test, and give feedback on to Microsoft. The Developer’s Preview is distributed by Microsoft and will keep you up-to-date with all the latest software preview updates deployed by Microsoft. Although this will update your operating system, the drivers that may go along with some phones may not get updated, if at all, until the official release is put out by your service provider.

How To Get It

Create a Microsoft Live ID with a Developers Account.

1 - If you don’t already have one it’s free and easy! Go here:
2 - With your new liveid go to the Windows Apps site
      *For more information on AppStudio you can check out this blog of mine!
3 - Login to AppStudio using your liveid.

4 - Once logged, in click the blue button for “Create New Project”

5 - Next choose any template you desire. To keep it simple I always choose “Empty App”. Then click create.

Note: AppStudio is constantly being updated so the look and process of this selection may change, but basic steps should be similar.

Congratulations! Now that you have created a project inside of AppStudio your liveid should now be a “Developer Account.”

Note: This does not allow you access to publish apps, it just sets your account up to be ready for the Developers Preview.

6 - On your Windows Phone, go to the app store and search for “Preview for Developers” app and install it.

7 - Once the installation has completed open the app, then sign in using your Developer’s account (this will be the liveid that we used above).

8 - After reading all the terms and descriptions, you will be able to select “Enable Preview for Developers” and then choose  “Done”.

9 - Once you received the “success” message you can return to the home screen and go to Settings > Phone Update. 

Note: Once here, it should automatically check for new updates if not you can manually select to check.

When you have completed all of these steps, you will have a developers account and the Preview will be installed.

Once a new update is pushed out to the Preview it will pick it up and notify you that an update is ready
  • just like a regular update! Enjoy! Remember, it is a preview so with all the benefits sometimes there may be a bug! Just hold tight, the developers are listening and working on fixes. 

Additional Information You May Want to Check Out: 

These are areas you can provide feedback to the Windows Phone developers:
You can always check out Windows Phone Central for continual news and updates about your Windows Phone: 


Wiz E. Wig, Mascot & Director of Magic
Wiz E. Wig

Director of Magic