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December 25, 2014

From our house to yours: Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

To our readers, we wish you peace, joy, and lots of Lumia love! As a present for your presence, here are “quick-start” and “best tips” guides for you and your Lumia as you gear up for the New Year.

By now, all of the gifts under your Christmas tree have been opened and you’re relaxing with a preprandial glass of wine amidst a sea of discarded wrapping paper and ribbon.

If you gave or received a new Lumia smartphone this holiday season—such as the Microsoft Lumia 830 or Lumia 635–here are some helpful links to get you started.


Already an experienced Lumia user? For you old Lumia hands who want to make the most of your phone to get a jump on 2015, we’ve got you covered, too.

For the New Lumia User

Congratulations, you have a new Lumia smartphone with Windows Phone 8.1! You’ve got some of the best technology, phone features and Windows Phone apps out there. Now what?


First, download the Help+Tips app. Then head here to learn how this app will answer vexing questions such as, “How do I transfer my contacts to my Lumia?” and “What’s a Microsoft account and why do I need one?”


Next, get the low-down on Windows Phone 8.1 by going here to learn about some of the new and updated features for WP 8.1 such as as Wi-Fi Sense (this feature has saved me more than once while on travel) and Word Flow.

In fact, if you want to become expert in using the Lumia “swipe and send” keyboard, go here for the best Word Flow tips and tricks.

One of the best tools in your Lumia toolkit is the camera, whether it’s the 5-megapixel camera of the Lumia 635, the 10-megapixel camera of the Lumia 830, or the 41-megapixel camera of the Lumia 1020 with ZEISS optics and optical image stabilization.

Let’s start taking great photos: Go here for tips on how to take fantastic family photos and here are suggestions on Windows Phone imaging apps you may like.

For those of you in the U.S., you may notice a feature called Cortana on your Lumia and wonder, “Who is she?”

She’s your virtual personal assistant and she can help you with everything from giving directions to work based on current traffic conditions to reminding you to pick up milk and cereal the next time you’re near the grocery store.

Learn all about Cortana by going here, here and here.

For the experienced Lumia user

By now, you already know about the powerful camera on phones such as the Lumia 930, the Lumia 1020, and the Lumia 1520. Get the most out of your Lumia camera by downloading the newly updated Lumia Storyteller app and sharing your stories on

Need some photo inspiration? Check out these beautifully composed photos of Victoria Falls taken by National Geographic photographer Stephen Alvarez with a Lumia 830. He also captured the grandeur of Mount Everest earlier this year with a Lumia 930 and Lumia 1520.

You may also want to revisit our three-part series, “your 100 greatest Lumia photography tips.” Tips include shooting more rather than fewer photos (you can always delete), finding a photo-editing app that best suits you, and using flash to freeze the moment and avoid blur.

Here’s part one of the series; here’s part two and here’s part three.

A photo from "Your 100 greatest Lumia photography tips: Part 3"
A photo from “Your 100 greatest Lumia photography tips: Part 3”

In addition, here’s our story on the 50 “must-have” Windows Phone apps. Do you agree or disagree with the apps we featured? Let us know!

Get better organized in 2015 with the help of your Lumia: Check out this story and our Office 365 series on how tools such as OneNote, Word and Excel can help you keep on top of your workflow.

Finally, are you interested in sharing how your Lumia phone works for you? Give this story a read then write a review on your favorite Lumia features and best tips and tricks.

Stay tuned: In early January, we’ll start rolling out the Lumia Denim Update to all Lumia smartphones running Windows 8.1 that will bring fantastic new features and updates that will make your Lumia even better.