Microsoft officially stopped providing updates to the Windows Phone 8.1 back in 2017, and now in an updated support document, the Redmond giant has announced that it’ll shut down Windows Phone Store for smartphones running Windows Phone 8.1 OS on December 16, 2019. As a result, users will no longer be able to download apps from the store post the date of the end of support.
However, all the apps that you’re currently using will continue to work even after December 16, so if you’re still planning to stick to the Windows Phone 8.1, it’s a good idea to install apps that you need in future and you should do that well before December 16. Here are a few key points that you should read.
- Users will not be able to download any additional apps to the phone. Users should make sure to download all applications that they might want before December 16, 2019.
- There may be some degradation in app functionality going forward as updates are no longer available via the Store. Users should check with app publishers if they have questions.
- Reinstallation of apps will no longer be possible. If a user removes an app from the phone it will not be possible for such app to be restored. This includes phone reset as well as use of the Windows Device Recovery Tool (WDRT) where apps are deleted or removed. Users should take this into consideration before choosing to reset the phone or use WDRT on or after December 16, 2019.
Fortunately, there is a way to bring back the Windows Store on your Windows Phone and that is by upgrading from Windows Phone 8.1 to Windows 10, because the store in Windows 10 will still be functional after the December 16 deadline. Download Upgrade Advisor from Windows Phone store before December 16, or download the Over-the-Cable (OTC) Updater PC tool to upgrade to Windows 10.
The below Lumia smartphones are eligible to get the Windows 10 Update.
Microsoft Lumia 430
Microsoft Lumia 435
Microsoft Lumia 532
Microsoft Lumia 535
Microsoft Lumia 540
Nokia Lumia 635 (only 1GB RAM variant)
Nokia Lumia 636
Nokia Lumia 638
Microsoft Lumia 640
Microsoft Lumia 640 XL
Nokia Lumia 730
Nokia Lumia 735
Nokia Lumia 830
Nokia Lumia 929
Nokia Lumia Icon
Nokia Lumia 930
Nokia Lumia 1520
If your smartphone is not listed above, then, unfortunately, you’re out of luck.