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Live wallpapers revealed for Windows Phone 8: ESPN, USA Today and Bing

A new image has leaked out tonight revealing for the first time Window Phone 8's new "live" lockscreen wallpaper feature. We have mentioned live lockscreen wallpapers before, specifically when the Windows Phone 8 SDK leaked over the summertime (and we told you about them even before then). The feature is not quite as “live” as Android where things are actually moving around, wasting your battery. Instead, this is truly useful.

The image above, received by the site Nokia Innovation, shows three examples of this Live locksreen wallpaper: Bing, ESPN and USA Today. The former will refresh the lockscreen every day with Bing’s latest background, ESPN can show you sports scores presumably of your favorite team and USA Today highlights news via tile images.

Rum: 10

Those are but three examples as any developer can add this feature to their application. What’s more, it can be based off of geo-location, time and pushed updates, giving quite a unique and super useful experience for Windows Phone users. It’s “glance and go” taken to the next level, in our opinion.

There’s a lot more to these lockscreen wallpapers and you’re sure to see more coming Monday morning when Microsoft shows off Windows Phone 8 to the world. We’ll of course be there covering it live.

Source: Nokia Innovation

Daniel Rubino
Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

93 Comments
  • I will use the ESPN one for sure.
  • Word.
  • Go eagles
  • GO COWBOYS
  • Go Giants! :P need this now for Sunday's game.
  • No Redskins fans?........Anyway go Texans!
  • Go Real Madrid ?!
  • +1 Hala Madrid!
  • E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES!!!
  • Heck, yeah!
  • Go Niners!
  • HTTR!!!
  • I don't think I'd want to see how badly the Panthers got beat all week...but if it works for NCAA bball then it will be awesome
  • Go Bulls and Bears
  • Raider Nation baby!
  • Manchester united all the way!!!
  • GGMU
  • I guess I'm the only one that's undefeated here? Go Falcons...
  • Yeah baby. Bring on Philly!
  • Eagles!!!!!!
  • COLTS
  • Eagles times infinity!
  • Yes!
  • Steelers all day!
  • Go Saints!!!
  • Seahawks!
  • Pats:) ?!?!
  • While we are on the subject. What are the best American football apps?
  • GO LOCAL SPORTS TEAM AND/OR COLLEGE!
  • That's very nice.
    Live wallpapers made for something useful. 
  • No my mario brothers snes live wallpaper is a live wall paper...this is simply just information over a wallpaper at best and is second fiddle to the real deal. 
  • lmao... That argument may convince the 5-year olds who visit this site, I'll admit it.
  • Hahaha!
  • The OS is about information consumption, if you want toys and games, stick with the other two.
  • Wow! How cool is that! ^_^
  • I wonder if you'll be able to use them in combination? So, I can set up say, 5 apps and have it cycle between them. That would be stellar.
  • I'd love to see it prioritize them.  Using 2 of the 3 examples above - I'd want to have it show my favorite football team (Seattle Seahawks) - first via ESPN, but only if they are currently playing a game - I don't care about the score 3 hours before or 2 days after the game, so why show me the live wallpaper?  If the Seahawks aren't playing, maybe check and see if the Mariners are playing, and show their live wallpaper.  If none of the teams I care about are playing, then move to the next app, and in this case, it would show me the bing wallpaper.
  • That'd be awesome. Throw a weather wallpaper in the rotation as well.
  • It looks like the USA Today one shows weather, but if there was an API so apps like WeatherFlow can use it, that'd seal it up
  • Don't worry about weather ones... :)
  • Aha!
  • Do you currently live in Seattle?
  • This rocks as is, but that would rock even more! Go MS!
  • Doesn't look like it, at least not for WP8, I would suggest that on the WP uservoice page once we know for sure. 
  • So it replaces the "extended info" option if it's enabled?
  • Is the ESPN wallpaper push enabled or something? Wouldn't be much use if it's every half hour or so.
  • I'm concerned about what features will be part of 7.8 vs 8.  I guess we'll find out Monday.  With my luck, all the cool features like live wallpapers will only be in WP8.
  • Only WP8 getting all new features is to be expected.
  • I have a feeling they will announce more features coming to wp7.8 (all new features that don't rely on the new hardware)
  • What's up with the clock being different?
  • Good point! Something's not right.
  • Photo Shop buddy. It's even got the old windows logo
  • My first thought, too. Color me highly skeptical.
  • Renders are renders. The function does exist.
  • I LOVE it! I hope it looks like that.
    Never really cared for the current lockscreen-layout. MS need to use more fat font as well throughout the OS UI, like in the marketplace.
  • THE BEARS on my lockscreen!!!
  • +1
  • OK, this is awesome. I'd love to have the ESPN version linked to "My Teams", then it would automatically show Michigan on Saturday and the Lions on Sunday. Mix in the Red Wings, Pistons and Tigers and that's a dynamic lock screen. :D Can anyone tell that I'm from Michigan? Haha
  • I would have guessed Ohio ;)
  • +1
  • Hmmm. It looks like that feature will be coming to existing Windows Phone devices. Look at the Windows logo. LOL!!!!!
  • I wanna a live weather update!!!!!!! NOW!!!!!!!
  • Just look outside your window. Now your updated. You're welcome.
  • But what if I'm in bed...? You wanna come and update my thermo-sensor rod for me...?
  • I think this one might make it over to 7.8 (judging by the easy implementation and old Windows logo).
    Thinking the same about improved lock screen notifications.
  • Damn. My WP7 is gonna start looking old pretty quick.
  • Can't say I like the new layout for the time and date (it looks unpolished), but I guess it gives more room for the background.
  • Yeah. it doesn't look very good. I guess that's the trade-off when you enable a live wallpaper. Unless I find a wallpaper I really like I probably won't use them specifically due to the less attractive date and time and the apparent loss of detailed info for my calender.
  • ESPN/boxing on my lockscreen! I love it and Me love you long time MS!
  • I thought I was the last Boxing fan alive!! I am in- home screen with the weekends best KOs....
  • Go Arsenal
  • Very cool. Sometimes I get numb looking at my lockscreen. Not anymore
  • Blah, better come to WP7.8 or in getting a WP8! ...wait.
  • Oh and LOL at the wack shot at android. I actually think their live wall paper is great.
  • Will your lovely app have this feature Daniel? (possible spoiler in the reply's)
  • Pretty cool feature.
    And I actually like Android's live wallpaper feature (currently using an Android til I see what WP8 has to offer). I guess it depends on the phone and what wallpaper is used as they don't really waste my battery very much. Can get about a day and half out of one full charge while using the Paperland live wallpaper
  • Omg
  • Awesome! More wp8 goodness.. Will definitely be following the events on Monday.
  • Go Eagles! This is a really smart idea and a great point of differentiation for the WP8 platform that fits well with the platform.
    I cannot wait for Windows Phone 8!
  • Anyway we know this is activated on the OS? Is it the Nokia ESPN app or the regular ESPN app?
  • Cowboys!!
  • I we get this on the 7.8 upgrade
  • Why the old Windows logo? I know it can be attributed to using old graphics from the previous emulator... but I can't imagine why they would do that... I think the WP8 emulators have the new logo.
  • Hope this gets on WP 7.8 too, no reason for it not to be.
  • I wnder why the windows logo is still the old one.
    Any thoughts?
  • I just got an iPhone 5 after my Arrive breaking. But only because Sprint seems to be wholly against WP. Hopefully by March Sprint will get some and I can steal my wife's upgrade. These are the types of things I prefer in my OS.
  • I would have the Bing wallpapers, just like I have for my desktop on my pc. Love it! However I agree with some of you about the time and date format isn't as nice looking.
  • I'd love to see something like this for photos in the phone. Every few hours or so many unlocks it could cycle to a new pic from your selected gallery so you don't have to change it yourself all the time. I could set it to cycle through my favorited pictures.
  • Very cool. If the ESPN Live Wallpaper updated everytime the score changed that would be awesome. I can also see having a Live Wallpaper for a traffic app with a up-to-date picture of the local area if there were a traffic incident.
  • GO EAGLES!!!!
  • OK, I've been looking for this. I have the ESPN Scorecenter and the Nokia ESPN apps both installed, but this live wallpaper isn't an option to choose.
  • Agreed. Where is it??????
  • Still waiting...