Microsoft has released the Live Lock Screen app for Windows Phone 8.1

One of the coolest features that was shown off at Build 2014 for Windows Phone 8.1, besides Cortana, was the lock-screen app that allows you to change up the lock-screen animation on your phone. Today, we are happy to report that the app is finally available for download.

The app will give Windows Phone users one more layer of customization and truly make your device personal. Microsoft has always said that Windows Phone is the most personal device on the market, and this app is one more addition to prove their point.

You can download the app from the source link below, but know that the app is still in beta, so there may be a few bugs here and there. Additionally, users are reporting that the app is working on phones with 512MB of RAM even though Microsoft said that it would require 1 GB of RAM.

If you do download the app, let us know your experience with it. For us, we are noticing a slight delay between the unlock and getting access to our start screen. Hopefully this delay will be worked-out once the app leaves the beta stage.

Download: Lock Screen App

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57 Comments

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As far as live do they mean those animated photos? I have never know why anyone would want to animate something. Personally I think it's a waste of CPU cycles / power and draining battery.

No animated photos. But it can have animations on the lock screen. And a few seconds of animation won't be noticeable on battery levels.

It was said before that phones with low RAM wouldn't get this right away, so I am pleased that my 520 was able to install it. The only thing I don't really care for is that all the notification icons appear as stars instead of their own icon, so it's hard to tell which is which. Other than that it's pretty cool. Hopefully at some point they add a few more styles and some more customization options.

I had serious issues with my Lumia 920.
I tested the app for a couple of minutes and then uninstalled it. However, everytime I had to wake the phone, I got the "resuming" screen. The only solution I found was to hard reset the device.
Is it only me or do you think it looks like more an early alpha build than a beta one?

Same problem on my 520. I just changed the lock screen to Bing and then went back to Photo and the "resuming" problem went away, When I had the app running it took about half a second for the screen to appear and it wasn't smooth so I got rid of it. I don't see the big deal about this app unless they let people create their own lockscreens for their phones on the phone or on a desktop.

i noticed something - when i unlock it, the start screen first appear as a low quality jpeg image that the next moment updates to what it really is, also the status icons (battery, wi-fi, coverage) are missing and then they slide down, i hope this gets cleared out in the beta, because the first lock screen is really cool

Sir Topham Hatt said,
Meh...
when my phone is locked, it's generally in my pocket or I'm not using it or even looking at it.
I'm happy to give this one a miss.

You seem to miss the point of a lock screen. They're not there to be stared at while your device is locked, they are supposed to enhance the look and feel of the unlocking process, while also giving you a pleasing way to get quick information such as the time, waiting messages, etc, without fully unlocking the device. Clearly it's not designed to be of use while it's in your pocket, as your useless comment alludes to.

Don't try this on a Lumia 520. It takes half a second to present the lock screen when you turn the display on, in the meantime it's just white and blank. lol

and the designs are catastrophic if you use Bing images. I downloaded it to try only the last design in the screenshot, and the app actually zoomed in my bing image in order to display the larger time and date. Ridiculous. I think I'll stick around the original lockscreen, as I like to have Bing images there, so the clock is for the most part not hard to see.

Hope they allow kids corner when it comes out of beta, the only reason stopping me using it at the moment is it doesn't work with it. :(

Working flawlessly on my Lumia 1520... but I don't really like any of these themes; probably reverting to the default later today. Hopefully when its out of beta more customization options will be present; lets just wait and see I guess.

I can't believe how excited WP8 users get over a simple and boring looking lockscreen... :( There's nothing better to enjoy on WP8? Apps, games, I don't know?

Why is it wrong to get excited about a cool new app that adds some visual flair to the lock screen? There's plenty in WP to enjoy, this just adds to the experience for some people.

I see these images (above) and I suddenly wish that there was some integration with "Glance"... so if you choose, say, the first option... the info on the glance screen is also at the same angles (though obviously moving around the display to prevent burn-in). Just without the background image of course.... just the font and angles and arrangement of info.


Well, a majority of those that have commented on this (including Reddit/WPCentral) seem to dislike it at the moment.. myself included.

I hope someone comes up with an interesting yet simplistic look because I find these layouts terrible. What's the deal with screen 2 where the lower left of the time is chopped off?

Wow, talk about making you wait for an eternity and then handing you a potato! In case the guys who made the OS forgot, the lockscreen is supposed to show me notifications. With this app, all I get is a star with 50 written next to it and another star with 1 written next to it, with no indication as to which app/piece of information those stars represent!

Agree it is a bit lacking in some areas - no weather for example but it shows the little icon for my mail for instance with the number for me, so seems something has gone wrong with yours.

Mail is the only thing, I believe, that shows its original icon - or, maybe, it's just first-party apps. Try putting any third-party app like Whatsapp as one of the notification apps and you'll see just a star. This is stupid! I mean, I have never done UI design and I called it out the second I saw the app.

Not very impressed with it. Was expecting some interactive lockscreens not just different fonts, locations and a couple new things.

Hoping to see more added by either Rudy or Microsoft.. or perhaps someone will use the API and add some neat ones that are more interactive (if the API even allows such a thing).

Seems rather laggy on certain themes too so I can see why they were concerned about 512MB devices.

'even though Microsoft said that it would require 1 GB of RAM.'
FOR A LOCK SCREEN? What did they write it in, GW-BASIC?

68k said,
'even though Microsoft said that it would require 1 GB of RAM.'
FOR A LOCK SCREEN? What did they write it in, GW-BASIC?

It doesn't need 1GB of RAM.

Kyang said,

It doesn't need 1GB of RAM.

'Additionally, users are reporting that the app is working on phones with 512MB of RAM even though Microsoft said that it would require 1 GB of RAM.'

An app like this should use more than around a megabyte or two, of free RAM. So why did Microsoft state 'it would require [a phone with] 1 GB of RAM' (when even a 512MB phone would have more than 50% of its RAM free for apps to use)?

Why does it matter what they said? It's here and it doesn't require 1GB of memory.

They never explicitly said it would require 1GB of memory. There was just a vague reference in a tweet to a 1GB version that was just assumed to mean that it would require 1GB.

Yeah, and then suddenly like with some games support for 512mb ram devices will be removed.
Besides, I want system update not some fancy lock screen.

Well seeing your name is "insanelyapple", what are you doing using a Windows phone anyway? Oh I know, to complain and troll.

No polish at all. Did they skip straight from alpha to public beta? Horrible font choice too - hope it's possible to change (note sans-serif font for time, and serif font for date. So serif fonts are making a return in 2014 ???). :x

Edited by 68k, Jul 26 2014, 12:45am :

68k said,
The least they could have done is chosen better wallpaper for the previews...

Complaining for the sake of complaining? Only two of the six themes use serifs.

And you can change the wallpaper to whatever you want it to be.

My usual phone is a 1020 but its in for repair (it thinks the headphones are plugged in), anyway I bought a 635 from EE shop outright as ill be giving it to my son as soon as mines back and I wanted to try it.

Got to say I'm impressed at the device for the price, sure the 512 mb ram does show itself randomly (used to the 1020) but overall ita smooth and performs admirably.

I'm well impressed with these lock screens and how they also run on this bottom end device I'm using till mines fixed.

Well done Ms. Truely.

I had high hopes for this feature, but now that I've seen it, I'm utterly disappointed.

Microsoft appears to have given us 6 new "themes", with no way to change any options on them, and no way to download more... and the functionality will not work with using any other lock screen app. So, you can't "take the animations/fonts from one of their 6 themes, and combine it with the background updates from a separate app". That right there, is why I will not be recommending anyone to use this app.

So... I'll stick with my static photo, which I crafted and which uses the top 45% of the screen, looking perfect to me... and my wife will stick with her free "Astronomy Lock Screen" app which downloads the daily Astronomy Picture of the Day as her lock screen, available here:
http://www.windowsphone.com/en...0a75-494f-8a7b-2498ba332beb

Microsoft, you missed the mark. I hope you can redeem yourself, by implementing the functionality I recommend here... but I doubt it'll ever happen.

Edited by PUC_Snakeman, Jul 26 2014, 12:36am :

ians18 said,
Maybe you missed that it's a Beta?

Maybe I didn't miss that it's a Beta. The fact is, this is likely the functionality that final will have, and I am disappointed.

I still would wait final judgment until official release, but I agree it is a bit underwhelming. I can't see there only being just the few themes, I'm sure it will be more open, they are just trying to get it out there in this limited version to get more fully test for its base functionality.

"Beta" has a meaning... and that meaning is that it is largely feature complete (no new major features coming), but still working out the bugs and performance.

Adding customizable notifications like battery, messages, calendar, email, weather, etc., would be a "major new feature".

pmbAustin said,
"Beta" has a meaning... and that meaning is that it is largely feature complete (no new major features coming), but still working out the bugs and performance.

Adding customizable notifications like battery, messages, calendar, email, weather, etc., would be a "major new feature".

This is a sett of API's and its a beta of that with some themes thrown in to demo. People can make themes for it once its put of beta.

pmbAustin said,
"Beta" has a meaning... and that meaning is that it is largely feature complete (no new major features coming), but still working out the bugs and performance.

Adding customizable notifications like battery, messages, calendar, email, weather, etc., would be a "major new feature".


Beta has no strict definition except that it is pre-release. Yes notifications would be major, but this app has many more designs coming, which of course depends on the dev reception, but this app is only an API example.

wv@gt said,
I wonder if this will eventually become part of the lock screen setting with no app needed

It being an app, allows it to be update far more frequently.

FiB3R said,
It being an app, allows it to be update far more frequently.

It could be integrated into settings though, just like manufacturer apps can.

FiB3R said,

It being an app, allows it to be update far more frequently.

Windows Phone allows you to update the settings via the appstore. Nokia's extra settings do it all the time. I wouldnt be suprised if this eventually gets integrated. Similar story with the file explorer.

I can confirm it works* on the 521. It is really cool.

*Well, as far as a beta goes, anyways. It has gotten stuck, so I restarted and it reverted to the old lockscreen with the default T-Mobile wallpaper, which let me tell you, hasn't been used since I first got the phone. #betaissues I guess.

Edited by ians18, Jul 25 2014, 11:33pm :