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Microsoft is turning off push notifications for Windows Phone 7.5 and 8.0

Windows Phones
Windows Phones (Image credit: Windows Central)

Microsoft has announced (opens in new tab) that it is ending the push notification service on Windows Phone 7 and Windows Phone 8 starting February 20th, 2018. The company says that since both of those platforms have reached the end of their support, these services are now able to be discontinued.

Turning off push notifications means that devices running Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 will no longer receive notifications, live tiles will no longer update, and the "find my phone" feature will no longer function. Those still using Windows Phone 7.5 or Windows Phone 8.0 will likely want to switch to something newer.

On February 20, 2018, Mobile Push Notification services will be turned off for Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0. Once this happens: Your phone will no longer receive notifications. Your phone will not receive additional live tile updates. The "Find my phone" feature will no longer locate your phone. Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 have reached their end of support dates, and thus services for these versions of Windows will be discontinued over time.

Microsoft says that Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows 10 Mobile users will not be affected by this change, as push notifications for those platforms will remain on for the time being. However, once support comes to an end for those platforms as well, it is likely Microsoft will also turn off push notifications there too.

Are you still using a Windows Phone 7.5 or Windows Phone 8.0 device? Let us know in the comments!

Thanks for the tip, @A_Deerslayer!

Zac Bowden
Zac Bowden

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows 10 on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

  • Never personally owning an iPhone or Android, do those platforms disable notifications sooner or later than Microsoft? What are the oldest versions of iOS and Android that still receive notifications?   Since Windows Central says MS just announced this, did users of those versions of iOS and Android get more than a few hours notice that was going to happen to them?
  • Assuming the app versions are still supported on android, any OS version should still get push notifications. version 2.3 (from 2010-ish) still shows up in the platform numbers, so is reasonably still in use.
  • My Motorola Flipout with Android 2.1 still receives push notifications.
  • They announced it on Friday. So a few days, not few hours :)
  • That's a relief. A few days is plenty of time to research, purchase, and switch to anoher phone. ;)
  • From what, WP7? 8.0? What have you been doing on these outdated platforms all this time?
  • I don't understand why you assume I ever owned a WP7 or 8.0. Since I didn't, your question is of the same ilk as "do you still beat your spouse?" But I am not a sociopath; I can relate to another human being who was put into a position of having to replace a phone on extremely short notice. Of course if WC has misrepresented the amount of notice given, maybe MS hasn't inconvenienced anyone unnecessarily.
  • In Windows' case, the old MPN service was badly designed and very inconsistent at delivering notifications at scale. This was an issue at the architectural level and was impossible to resolve. This is why the Windows Notification Service that is used by Windows 10 was created. Microsoft are simply shutting down a legacy system that never worked well in the first place.
  • Get off of windows phone, it sank with the Titanic back in 1912
  • Do you have a life ?
  • you said good
  • I have a T mobile G1 and Galaxy S2 in my house hold that still receive push notifications. This is what happens when a company chases short term profits... they will look at every nook and cranny to cut cost.
  • Wow! The statement is so rude.
  • In the UK they say I'm alright jack zac
  • I'm glad that 8.1 isn't a part of this.
  • @libra89.  yet!
  • Well for all those hanging on to their Windows phones saying they'll continue to use it for as long as it still works you can clearly see Microsoft has other ideas. So even if YOUR phone still works fine and the apps are still supported (not been removed) then they've decided you can't use it anyway W10m users take heed
  • Just wait and see how they will screw their devs. A lot of apps on w10 are not being updated.
  • This truly odd one Has this ever happen on Android phone or ios
  • No
  • well iOS and everybody in a way, they will stop upgrading iOS on old phones, then is App store force app developer to update their app work with newer iOS(new resolution, 64bit etc ) I think my 3Gs iphone with iOS 6 is sort of limited.
  • To be fair all Android and iOS devices have yearly life cycles so they don't have time to become so obsolete that they turn off push notifications. It's really a testament to Windows Phones that they have lasted this long that Microsoft are only just switching off push notifications for them.
  • 2011/2012 were when the iPhone 4/4S came out. They are absolutely still getting support and Apple would never turn off push notifications with a few days notice. Not even remotely comparable.
  • So they can still get apps from the Store then as I was under the impression that the 4 and 4s were 32bit?
  • You can get apps that continue to support the iOS versions that those phones can run -- it is app developer dependent. So if a dev chooses to continue supporting iOS 7 and you've upgraded to iOS 7.x, you can still use their app on an iPhone 4. The oldest iPhone fully in support, still receiving iOS updates through 11.x, is the iPhone 5S (2013).
  • And it wont have bluetooth or wifi issues ? like the ios 8.1 update on the iPhone 5s ? wow .. and here i was thinking that my iPhone 5s will never work again .. : ) , go home you sheep, stop lying.
  • yes, my point is most app developers moves on so they don't maintain so many versions of app. in addition to different platforms, and screen sizes.
  • Hey neo,  lay off the drugs.  Iphones have a 5 year life cycle..NOT a one year.
  • , not if it stops working before that : )  .. go home sheep..
  • Sorry WANDOWSTAN.  NO SHEEP HERE.  and YES,  I have a 5s that has the NEWEST OS version.   It works fine etc.   I choose apple phones because of this reason.   I had MANY MANY windows phones...and they (microsoft) let me down.   It's not being sheepish to want up to date apps,  support for your device beyond 6 months,  and lots of accessories and useful products.   Jesus some fanboys here are SILLY.
  • In Windows' case, the old MPN service was badly designed and very inconsistent at delivering notifications at scale. This was an issue at the architectural level and was impossible to resolve. This is why the Windows Notification Service that is used by Windows 10 was created.
    Microsoft are simply shutting down a legacy system that never worked well in the first place.
  • This is clearly forced obsolescence. End of support is one thing, effectively turning off the devices en masse is another thing entirely. And before anyone gets smart, turning off notifications on a phone is effectively disabling the device (a phone that doesn't ring is not a phone, so a smart phone that doesn't notify you of voip, email etc. is no longer operational in any reasonable sense). I'm surprised this is allowed.
  • This is not planned obsolescence. he old MPN service was badly designed and very inconsistent at delivering notifications at scale. This was an issue at the architectural level and was impossible to resolve. This is why the Windows Notification Service that is used by Windows 10 was created. Microsoft are simply shutting down a legacy system that never worked well in the first place.
  • Just because Microsoft's services are bad isn't a good excuse for disabling devices people bought fairly recently.
  • Fairly recently? How do you define 'fairly recently'? To me, that's around 1-2 years ago and definitely the 6+ years ago that Windows 8 and earlier phones came out. I'm sure you noticed that WP8.1 and W10M were not included in the above announcement.
  • How many times are you going to post this?
  • He'll be posting this quite a lot I guess, as no-one at MS will listen.
  • I didn't say it was planned anything, MS can't plan, don't be ridiculous. I said it was forced obsolescence, not planned. I stick by that. Delivering notifications at scale??? This is Windows Phone we're talking about, just what kind of scale are you imagining here? A very small one I guess. If the system coped (sort of...) whilst WP was at its peak it should have no problems working well now.
  • Forced obsolescence? They're ending support for a dead platform.
  • Damn. Remember all those people telling us even though MSFT has given up on W10M our phones would still work? 2019 is end of service for W10M. Seems like we have 1 more year.
  • The newest devices this applies to are Windows Phone 8 though. We're talking like Lumia 920s from 2012, if somehow they were never updated to 8.1. The most obsolete of the obsolete.
  • When was end of support for 7.5 and 8.0?  I'm sure the push notifications kept coming for a while after end of support so I'm expecting this to still work on my W10M for a while passed 2019, but I might already be on the next-gen Microsoft mobile device by then...
  • How much could it possibly cost to just leave the damn thing running. This is ridiculous.
  • It's not about cost. This is Ol' Nads being vindictive because us lot insist on being customers and he wants us all to go away and leave MS to get on with the IBM2.0 plan. He's been seeing how quickly WMR headsets have been bumping up their Steam percentage and he is not going to be happy about that, but he can't pull down WinMR too hard because he wants to move it to the enterprise space. He'll have seen all the talk about the not-Phone from consumers and is furious it might get bought by us and then he'll have another consumer platform to tear down. He's going to be so mad with us Windows victims now. I tell you, as soon as Ol' Nads gets home from the pub we better find some way to distract him or someone's in for a clout.
  • Frankly speaking it really costs something. It would need machines to process, data center to store, and network support to send notifications. There will also be human effects behind any service, even if it's legacy, to adopt any system-wise update, check status, and handle any error / exceptions. Shut the service down could really save something, though I can't tell how much. Whatever, from customer aspect, it's a disaster for sure. Also it's not well handled even if the decision is made unavoidable. It would be better if notify public months ahead, and also suggest users to upgrade to 8.1 if possible in the notificaiton. Current annoucement is really rude.
  • Be honest, how many people do you think are still rocking a phone with Windows Phone 7.5? Probably hardly anyone, no doubt a few more with WP 8, but this is hardly going to effect multitudes of people.
  • First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist. Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
  • It's a cell phone. Comparing to genocide is beyond ridiculous.
  • Whilst the target is not comparable, the methodology really is. Can you not see the drip drip effect here? I'm kinda surprised about that. Seems obvious to me.
  • Some would say, not understanding the concept of analogies and how they differ from a comparison is ridiculous. ;)
  • @HoosierDaddy, It's far too hyperbolic even if it was meant as comparative.
  • Woah dude... I think you need to put your phone down and head outside for a while...
  • You're absolutely right BUT - I nearly picked up a Lumia 800 and 900 from a selling page this week purely for nostalgia reasons. I'd maybe use them just for kicks for a few days here and there but this means I couldn't do that either yet I can pick up a Nokia brick from mid 90's and it'll still be fully functional
  • It is functional, it'll still make calls & send SMS, some of the tiles just won't spin around. On 5+ year old phones. That no one uses.
  • Nope, notifications from emails, social networks and other apps won't work. Hence, the end of support for notifications turns the device into a dumbphone.
  • One of the smartest dumb phone :-)
  • There were more than a few sold in Europe and in emerging markets like India, Asia and South America, and since salaries there are much lower than in the West, people will hang on to older devices much longer.
  • Probably not many. But the problem is most of those who are, are probably not very tech savvy. They probably got them as Lumia 640s or 521s on prepaid and don't even know that this is happening. The enthusiasts are all on the last version of 8.1 or 10, depending on preference.
  • Actually i saw a Windows 7 Phone user , like 3 years ago, i believe they are still hanging on to that , while i like Windows and Windows Mobile 10 especially, i dont get why people hang on to such old tech, maybe it gets the job done but those can be pretty insecure and quite out of support, if not then they are clearly out of it now.
  • I see people everyday with flip phones, all they do are phone calls and occasional SMS, and they work on rough jobs where they break smartphones like crazy so they keep that same phone for years because they only thing that makes a dumb phone obsolete is when the carrier turns off old cell phone networks...
  • People stick with what they like. Some of us prefer 8.1 to WM10.
  • Microsoft should be charged with Criminal offense. Same like apple.
  • I don't know if they should be charged with a crimianl offense or even a civil complaint. But not knowing what law or contract may have been violated, if MS gave just a few days warning they richly deserve the steel hankie of Politenessman. Not cool to withhold the termination date from effected customers. MS didn't wake up a few days ago and say "You know what, I think I'll kill notifcations this week". 
  • Surely this only refers to Microsoft's services, right? I mean, if we host our own Exchange Server (which we do), and older Windows Phones still connect to it for mail (to be fair, nothing older than 8.1 here, so this wouldn't apply), those will still get Live Tile notifications, won't they? Maybe a Windows Phone developer can answer this -- if it really applies to all Live Tiles, how is this technically possible without a phone update? Let's say I have a Battery App or Free Space app that refreshes based on the phone's physical conditions. That's not dependent on anything from MS. Will those still work? If this really just means that and other Azure-based MS services will stop sending Live Tile updates, then that's not a big deal. If it's all Live Tiles, that's a much bigger deal, at least for those few still on Windows Phone 8.0 and earlier. 
  • It's only push notifications. The updates you refer to are scheduled updates which are not affected.
  • Thanks, Nik! (I'm a big fan of your uBlock Origin Edge Extension). What about non-MS push notifications? Do those go through MS in some way? Like e-mail from a private Exchange Server or Live Tiles for a cloud-connected app like the Weather Channel?
  • All 30 people still holding on to the WM handsets will be angry. 
  • I still have my HTC HD7 on 7.5. L920 is on W10M though but seriously I never knew those notifications were handled in a way that could be ended...Wow....Microsoft can basically make our phones stop working any day.
  • @kenzibit,  yes,  they can........and,  they will.   Be prepared for the same treatment very soon with 8.1 and 10 when the almighty andromeda comes out.  
  • Oh, well. At least they didn't kill off 8.1.... Still one of the best Phone OS's Microsoft ever made, it was stable and fast, W10M was always a work in progress and never lived up to the stableness or speed of 8.1.... We all knew this day was coming, didnt we ?  Besides if your on 7 or 8 you should update anyway about it.
  • If you can update. Remember that 7.8 was the end of the line for all devices in that series. IIRC everyone who was on 8.0 got 8.1 eventually. (It's been a long time and I've been out of the loop). But yeah, W10M gutted the UX and pretty much removed all that made Windows Phone worth using. I still have a Lumia 920 on 8.1 and a 1520 on W10M that I look back on nostalgically, but they're both abandoned software-wise and aren't getting security updates. Since the hardware doesn't support modern technologies like LTE-A and VoLTE, it's tough to really use them anyway. The sad part is that as time marches on they'll just get further and further behind.
  • Why do developers have to use a Push Notification Service? I always thought the apps run off the internet in the background and display their own messages themselves. Why does the OS have to play a role in this?
  • Having each app maintain their own always-on connection to a server is incredibly wasteful on the battery. You'd only get a few hours of standby time if it was done thay way. This way, the OS maintains one single connection for all apps, which means no matter how many apps you have waiting for push notifications it won't affect your battery any more than just one (or none).
  • Thank you for explaining.
  • Bad timing...why not wait till you have released (or at least announced) the rumored Andromeda device. All this does is push another batch of WP users to using iPhone or Android. Sad, because if history is prologue, these users will skip a few cycles before coming back to Windows (f ever).
  • They aren't planning on selling many Andromeda devices. It is just a hobby, not something they take seriously.
  • What MS are planning and what actually happens is as likely to sync up as a WP8 notification.
  • Nononono you got it all wrong, Satay is hoping to sell as many Surface Crevice devices as possible so he can then discontinue them, end support, and stop them folding.
  • They are just need to move on.
  • Someone still using a WP 7 or 8 phone is pretty unlikely to be upgrading to any new potential device...
  • Really? What do you think they've waited so long with a WP for? An Android?
  • @AndyCalling, for the most part, Windows Phone 7 and 8.0 users who did not jump on Windows Phone 8.1 or 10 do not fall into either the early-adopter or Windows-fan categories. That doesn't make it good that MS is taking away this function, but in terms of a base of eager fans waiting to pounce on an upgrade option from MS, well this group is not that.
  • I get that, but beggars can't be choosers. In the context of the Windows Phone user base, every owner counts. Start splitting groups off and it'll get lonely fast.
  • Pretty sure all 11 of you are on a first name basis, you'll keep in touch.
  • I think they've waited for the phone to physically break & then buy a new one.
  • Well Microsoft can't send a remote command to the handset to tell it to jump out of the users pocket and onto the concrete, but this is the closest they could come up with.
  • The overreaction is really a bit much. These are 4 or 5 year old phones, with minimal apps anyway. They won't be bricked. Who is keeping WP7 apps updated & useful? Didn't they pull the APIs to make them awhile back? It's like lamenting the loss of VHS tape... (queue comment extolling the virtues of VHS)
  • Still using my Samsung ATIV S and running strong with Office, Messenger and Tune In radio. Life is good, while we waited for MS Surface Phone!
  • Like wtf is wrong here? Did I miss anything in the news recently? Why is a software already built, which does not require any updates is made non functional?
  • I'll make two points in support of those who haven't switched from 7.5 or 8 yet. I will get slammed for them from the 'new is better' and the perpetual 'upgrade every 2 years crowd' bit so he it. 1.. There are many many WP users in developing countries (I live in one) who hold on to their old phones simply because 1. It works fine for their needs, and 2. Money is a big issue. So in these cases MS decision to stop push notifications effects them greatly. 2. The 'best', ie most pure and original Windows Phone experience is on WP 7.5 and WP 8. Yes, they both are lacking in many ways now, but the original WP concept, aesthetic, and experience of WP. 7.x gradually faded with each update to where W10M is far, far, from what WP promised and what it used to be. For the people that wanted the pure WP experience and was willing to put up with its current faults the lack of push notifications is fatal as well. Ok, i said 2 points but there is a third to make. 3. Regardless of your feelings towards others who, for whatever reason, stuck with these older platforms MS simply does not have to make this change. Both iOS and Android support much older versions of their OS and MS has the money to continue support. But Ms seems to have it built into their culture to hype the next Big Thing they are doing only to change direction later, try and convince you the change is necessary and leave their early adopters and supporters out in the cold (See the numerous about-faces in you favorite tech website archives)
  • Well said.
  • @jefbeard911 . well said. Most people don't understand the concept of "money" effects those not so well off. For those who do not what I mean the concept of money, currency can take many forms and the notes we all use are a certificate of tender for business rendered. Anyway, back to the topic at hand. The reason this is happening is simple - Microsoft's SLT who make the financial decisions are fast approaching the wall of Short term profit raiding. Therefore they are looking at every nook and cranny to cut cost. In laymen terms they are half-penny-farthing-shilling pinching. Beyond that are very, very. very tough questions especially for the CEO.
  • Interesting
  • The wall is fast approaching Microsoft, it's fast approaching. Yes, It's deliberately ominous because the wall of short term profit hunting is always short term, the clue is in the name. Nothing can sustain rapid growth for eternity especially rapid growth of stock prices, as fast as they rose they can fall just as fast. Now is the time to focus on long term goals not pay walls such as S mode pay wall for Pro users. Without any coherrent long term focus investor focus as well as interest will dwindle and most importantly consumers are critical to any long term pathway. In regards to the article I still have older smartphones that still receive push notifications and they are older than Wp7.x and Wp8.0.
  • I will be recommending downgrades for friends/family to windows 7 or wherever else they can go where they at least have more control over their computer. And do what they need to do on them
    Forcing something that works perfectly fine unusable, is not the same as following a product life cycle, this is s******* on someone's head.
    There's a reason why people don't have their fridges, kettles, microwaves and everything else linked to the internet. 🙄
  • The reason for other household appliances not being connected to the internet is likely due to cost. Eventually the cost will come down and more people will start to own smart fridges and such.
  • Seriously, this can't be affecting more than a few thousand users.  Sooner or later, the time to move on comes to all Windows Phones users 
  • Why stop notification? Microsoft should not develope any hardware! So stupid move! No longer like Microsoft. I prefer to hack Windows now instead to buy if I want a Windows pc! The reason is I might go Linux or it might only for gaming only. Microsoft does not provide valuable and stable and stable product! They do not know how to handle hardware business and marketing! Such a loser!
  • So when they say their turning off push notifications does that mean for example if you got a text it won't show you? Or is it other notifications like from games and apps? Because I don't see how if your killing off a phone why you wouldn't let them get notifications? I've been reading some of the comments saying that Apple also does this too so its not just Microsoft. I get disabling the find my phone, but not disabling notifications. If you understand this better than I do please correct me.
  • I just use my Samsung Focus as a Zune replacement. Works great for that and don't need notifications.
  • I am still using windows 8.0 lumia 720. What should I do?
  • I didn't know someone still on WP7