Windows Phone 8 Update 3

Poll: Have you installed Update 3 Preview on your Windows Phone?

Yesterday was a blizzard of news from Microsoft. Not only did they finally take the wraps off of their third update of the year for Windows Phone 8 (aka ‘GDR3’), but they had their own “one more thing…” moment where they announced the Preview for Developers Program. That program, which is open to anyone who takes a moment to register, allows you to download over-the-air Update 3 right to your device.

We walked you through the process and showed you what’s new in Update 3. So the question is simple: How many of you have already jumped on board with Update 3?

Our forums dedicated to the topic have exploded with chatter, and we’re receiving a lot of positive feedback on the process. In fact, we have received nary a complaint from users as the update appears to have gone very smooth for those of you dived in.

But are you still on the fence? Are you waiting for the official updates due later this year? Let us know by taking our poll.

If you’re on your Windows Phone, simply head to to take it that way!



Reader comments

Poll: Have you installed Update 3 Preview on your Windows Phone?



Yes it is. It just wasn't announced. Swipe left and hold camera, power, and volume down at the same time to get to the secret menu.

Dave Blake is too busy banning people who make light of his precious to remove "rick-rolling" comments from the articles on the main page.  
Thanks for the permaban sweetie!  It just goes to show how much you actually have to compensate for in real life.  

In all seriousness it would be great to have ALL of our notifications under the "NOTIFICATION" tab, but some things are just too easy

That's exactly it. It's not so much about the update as it is a way for Microsoft to technically avoid carriers delaying their updates by calling it a "preview" (even though for me it's been running just as smooth as an official OS update). Sure, we don't have any firmware updates yet, but we have the core OS update. (and yes, only us enthusiast users will bother doing this)

I could hope that we will see Nokiasoft follow suit with preview for shimmer later. I'm on a rogers branded phone, so i won't worry much about updates, but, I'm all over updating ASAP.

Well I did it to my HTC 8X because we know HTC won't be releasing updates anytime soon :(

I think so.  Mostly because I installed it the second it was available and it has been rock solid.  The version you are installing is already RTM so it is finished, not like a beta.  Also the big reason is then you will be notified when 8.1 is available early and that update is worth jumping on ASAP.

Personally,id hold off. I installed on two L920's both with GDR2 and the Amber update and I had to reinstall all apps. I'd proceed with caution.

I had no such issues. In fact this update appears to have fixed the live tile updating issue as well as allowing apps to update in the background. GDR3 seems to have fixed a lot for me. All we need now is Nokia to release Shimmer.

Yes!  No problems for me.  It took well over an hour to complete but definitely worth it.   My Lumia 822 is running better than ever.  And this was after it has been running very buggy with app not opening/resuming, or taking a really long time to do.  The best part of it all is that we no longer have to wait for our carriers to decide to test and release the updates.  There are still some goodies coming from Nokia, but those future updates (post-acquisition) should all be incorporated into these updates (for the most part).  The only thing we would need to wait on would be any carrier updates, but those are usually less important.

:( Not applicable. Still on L900. Will wait till 8.1 before switching (when contract is up)
Question for you all - How many apps can you simultaneously run now? Still limited to 5? Are there any improvements in this area?

It is dependent on system memory. If you have a 512MB device then you can probably have a single large program open, or a few small programs. If you have a 1GB device then you can have a few large programs or a ton of smaller ones. If you have a Lumia 1020 with 2GB of ram then you can pretty much have everything open at all times without issue. Within a year or so we will be seeing 3-4GB devices which will finally be enough to future-proof some of these larger apps and games coming down the pipe that are more and more like tablet or even desktop sized applications.

I have a Lumia 920, and when in the task manager view at the end of the day it is normal for me to have 5-8 items open, but it is mostly little stuff like contacts, email, text, phone history, IE, weather, and the like.

I frequently have 7 apps open simultaneously on my 720 with 512 MB RAM so it isn't depended on RAM.

Thanks everyone for the reply. My question was how many apps does the phone let u have open, and not about the phone freezing up because of number of apps. So it looks like 7-8. So it answers my question.
What I'm desperately looking for is if there is a way to permanently keep some apps open regardless of how many other apps i keep opening or closing in the multi tasking window. Currently (atleast in 7.8), the way it works is, if i have pandora open  and start playing music and let it run in the background, and open an email, look at few emails, reply, etc, then go to browser, and finish my stuff open couple of other apps etc, at some point, due to the "limitation" of number of apps that are open at the same time, WP shuts down the first open app, in this case, my music player. Of course, this limitation does not apply to zune player.
There should be a way to keep certain apps run in the background regardless. Not sure if this is addressed in WP8 or one of the GDRs.

In this situation, the x to close would be of use to long as you pay attention and close those apps you know you are done with, then you'd be able to keep Pandora open simply by closing them without having to do it the old way...with just the back button it was inconvenient to have to back out of them, but now, hold down back, see your open apps and close those you don't need. Sounds like a little thing, but it really does give you the control it sounds like you need.

Pandora continues to play music on my L920 regardless of how many other apps I open or close, it is not affected by the multitasking "limit" on WP8.

You would have to ask someone how Pandora works.
Music normally should continue playing because it is a separate background task. From my quick search it looks like Pandora is using the normal streaming music task so it will be fine in the background. In other words, you should be able to start the music and close pandora down.

Apps that play music need to register themselves properly and they won't ever get closed.
Example, use the Pandora website Notice the music it plays is added to the is media player and doesn't close no matter what you are doing.

complain to app developer for not using OS states and media register properly.

Come on guys, lets support nokia, losing them inbthe market is a huge lost to us consumers, they are the real phone maker that gives a,consumer a,real deal features, we should not let others gimmick to replace nokias feature like here maps, carl zeiss, and nokias premium build and quality, hope you got my point :)

well im sure there is people who never installed 7.8, or even zune. or gdr1 or 2... so no, not 75% WP users.... probably you mean 75% users IN WPCENTRAL, but outside WPcentral... this update is unknown, or this news.

Yep. Installed and went great. Nothing in this update that I was really eager to get, but closing apps is pretty cool. Excited for notifications on Glace with new Nokia firmware though.

Yes. For me its cool to finally get the text to speech working in my cars' bluetooth and the close button on the multi tasking is always handy.

In that case I'll continue to wait. I must be able to force 2G for my phone to be useful at home. Why can't AT&T get that through their heads?

Complain to them about this problem and ask for a free of charge micro cell. They very well may comply. I told a guy to do that and they gave him one for free. Now it works great at home. 

@Daniel Rubino: Ive been looking for an answer all day... please, I just need  clarification: This WILL void my warranty, but only until the official OTA upgrade comes out, so once the official OTA and bittersweet shimmer come out, Ill be able to upgrade to them and the warranty will be back in order... is this correct?

The install on my 1020 went a lot smoother than the iOS7 update went. Mainly, it didn't take five hours to download.
A few interesting updates. I'm more concerned with the under-the-hood stuff.

Yes but I did not get alot of the features. Like no
closing windows after holding down back button among other thing.. I did notice some changes as I did go through all my setting options after update

Yes but I did not get alot of the features. Like no
closing windows after holding down back button among other thing.. I did notice some changes as I did go through all my setting options after update. Nokia Lumia 920

What? What are you saying you didn't get? Closing windows after holding back button??? That just brings up the running apps list..

Yes and my Live Tiles function normally again like pre Portico. Ever since that update they never worked the same. Like Nokia Battery and others never updated

Yes, custom text tones. Easyring and music app lets you download music and you can edit it for ringtones or texts for your collection to use.

Yeah, but I still want DRM sounds support. Even my old Motorola Razr V6 Maxx flip phone has support for that...

Wat will change further on this wen nokia releases bittersweet shimmer?
Only glance screen colours n notifications? Or any other added stuff?

Ya,that i know. I asked how is bittersweet shimmer different from this release other than wat i mentioned?

had no problem installing it. only took 30 mins on my HTC 8S. Impressed with it; love all the new features even though they're not monumental theyre still nice to have.

Yes, installed last night. Install went flawlessly. Love the ability to close apps by tapping X.

Yes! Only for custom tones and app closure. Would much prefer a gesture swipe up or down I stead of the X. Or at.least leave the X and let me do a gesture.

Yes. I like the custom text tones for contacts but I wish they would have added a custom tones for email field too like on BlackBerry. "X" to close apps is by far the most important feature. Hope we get 8.1 early with this program also :P

Also I wish they would have allowed us to choose different tones for different email accounts like on Blackberry instead of a universal email tone across all accounts. But I guess beggars can't be choosers.

Im really eager to update to gdr3 but I'm not the most tech savvy guy. I love WP and all the forum news but I must admit I'm worried my lack of tech /hacker skills will leave my phone in a inoperable state. Question: Can this update process be done by the average WP enthusiast?advice?thanks !

Yes, once you follow the instructions in previous articles to register as an app studio developer (free) and install the Preview for Developers app, simply go to Settings to search for a new over-the-air update.

GDR2 bricked my 920, resulting in a replacement under warrantee. Not going to do an update that voids my warrantee.

Installed it thinking that support for the 3rd column of live tiles would be enabled. Not the case. I really hope MS includes this in the final release.

Yes, I've seen the tweet from belfiore. There was a previous wpc posting that noted it would be supported on devices with wxga displays (92x & 1020 included). I'm hoping this will still be the case when the final version is released.

Well hopefully as your screen is wider in aspect ratio to the 8x, which is what I have. Those extra 48 pixels could prove useful.

whoop-dee-doo. almost a non-event unless you've got the hots for "driving mode"  and screen orientation lock.  I think it sped up my boot time.
if you're thinking of upgrading now, don't let it cause you to miss something important, like dinner.

I appreciate X to close. Not the most convenient way of closing apps but better than the cumbersome way it was in GDR 1 and 2. It also made my 720 a tiny bit faster.

I was trying to hold myself...but I just gave in.

I've updated both my L920 and L620 (yes, you can update more than once device even if you only use App Studio ;P)

You know, that app closing option is not so unimportant as many seem to think. I don't know about you, guys and gals, but sometimes the fast resume feature is driving me crazy. Especially with streaming apps, such as Deezer or Songza. I enter the app, choose what I want to listen to, exit the app and everything is peachy. THEN, if I go back to the app by launching it from the tile, it still keeps on playing, but I cannot access anything! No albums, no playlists, nothing. This happens to Deezer all the time. The solution: back out of the app by hitting that back button until it closes properly and then relaunch it. Even WhatsApp is displaying this behaviour sometimes. Have you ever been in conversation with someone in WhatsApp, then left the app, went on with your life and then suddenly decided to share a photo from the hub via WhatsApp? You go there, choose a photo, hit share, and WhatsApp opens into the last conversation instead of giving you the option to choose the contact you wish to bother with your photo. Annoying.
But now I can simply purge the memory/RAM/whatever by "closing" the app and that's much easier and faster than simply bashing the back button like a mandrill. :D

Haven't had that issue with streaming music but I did have that WhatsApp issue more than once and so did my mum.

Dam right I did. Battery life seems better on my L925 since the update & loving custom Notification Tones & closing from Task list, no longer having to go into the app just to back out.

Recently I saw a pic of a 920 with five small tiles in the same row. I think it could be a fake. Do you have more info about this, please??

Not enough of an update to bother. Don't have a need to close apps but would rather have an option to choose which app I want to keep running and not close when launching other apps. Everything else is minor stuff. I look forward to the day that RT drops the desktop and replaces WP8.

Did not update yet but I like to see app closing "X"
Question: will the audio/video lab be open now so we can share files via apps (whatsapp for example) ? I miss that feature alot

Amber and Shimmer are Nokia firmware updates, not windows phone OS update. You will get shimmer when the full update is released to the public

By register we mean, log in using your Microsoft account credentials. That's it. It is a work around to bypass the likes of O2 or AT&T. Anyway, your call.

You don't pay a thing for register on App Studio. All you do is put your email there. Dear Lord, how hard is that.
But hey, you're not forced to update. Just wait for the final version to be released. Which, in your case, with AT&T, will probably be 2014 ;)

Have a unlocked Ativ S won't be waiting that long;)Not into opening a account for the hell of it for one update.


You just have to sign in with your existing email account. Don't have to register anything. It's like signing into outlook. Doesn't even take 30 seconds.

I'm waiting, nothing in this update juicy enough to justify the effort and risk (however small) of upgrading early. For 8.1 however, I'll be ALL OVER THAT. Notification Center finally!!!!

Installed it immediately!
I hope they still can improve battery life
Another positive note: it's also available in Dutch, so no longer had to wait till everything got translated!!!

No, this is just an OTA OS update. You're not flashing it so you keep everything you have and the OS gets an update

Installed yesterday on both mine and my daugthers Lumia 920s. Just got GDR2 last weekend installed then yesterday GDR3. Had no problems.
I am glad to not wait for AT&T for another update.
My daughter was doing custom text ringtones for all her friends. That is her favorite(and mine) feature.
Just follow the instructions and it is that simple.

Yes, on my AT&T Lumia 1020. And one of the things I was hoping it would fix is text message back up. I still get the error when tryin' to sync my Micorosoft account. Accept when I turn off "text messaging" back up. Ugh.. The rest is nice of course.

I would've done it if it got me Data Sense on my AT&T phone.  But for now I'll just have to wait.
Side note...I sent a message to @ATTCustomerCare about Data Sense, asking if I should just flash my phone to get it and switch to t-mobile...
I got a response from @t-mobile saying "We'd be glad to help you out" with a link to their BYOD page.  Still waiting for a response from AT&T...

No, it requires less than 200 MB. I had less than 200 MB free storage on my 720 and GDR3 installed just fine.

my question is, is there a risk of bricking my phone? As well as if i update it this way do i get windows blue update as i normally would, or would i have to flash from now on any new update thats released? someone please answer these two questions for me.

Judging from the comments, there isn't a signifficant risk of bricking the phone. A lot of people, including me, updated with no problems

please, i just need  clarification: This WILL void my warranty, but only until the official OTA upgrade comes out... is this correct?

Installed it last night on my AT&T 920, with no problems during either the install or afterward. I just love that I am no longer beholden to AT&T in regard to getting updates for my phone!

Yes, and love it. I dislike, however, that screen rotation lock took Bluetooth's place in the list of initial settings. Hopefully a fix will come in the future. One minor complaint. Love it other than that!

I installed GDr3 yesterday. All i wanted was custom SMS tones. My life is already easier. Now I know what sounds to ignore! Before I was just ignoring all texts until I had time... that didn't work well when the wife was trying to text...