How to use the Windows Phone app for Windows desktop

In times where most people prefer uploading their media content to cloud directly, Microsoft favors plugging the phone into computers to sync content. Yesterday, we read about the Windows Phone App for Desktop, in brief. Today, we will see how to use it and about its Settings.

Windows Phone app for desktop

With Windows Phone App for Windows 8, you can see the amount of storage space you’re using on the device and the amount used for each content type (photos & music, and more). Microsoft has extended the podcast support too in the updated version of the app.

How to use the Windows Phone app for Windows desktop

To sync the media

There are two simple ways to sync media content between your Windows 8 Phone and Windows Desktop

  1. Use File Explorer
  2. Use the Windows Phone app

The Windows Phone app has a modern interface that highlights album art and makes it easy to add music and playlists from locations on your PC. The app is downloaded automatically when you plug your phone into your computer Or, it can be downloaded from the Windows Store.

For adding music or playlists

In the Windows Phone app, click Add music.

Then, click a folder to choose specific songs to add.

Next, click the Playlists folder and select the specific playlists to be added.

Click each song individually if required. You will notice all the files you choose will start appearing at the bottom of the app.

When done, click Add. Once added, you are ready to sync.

Click Music in the Windows Phone app for desktop. Make sure the Sync music checkbox is selected.

Then, select any playlists, genres, artists, or albums you want to sync. To sync your entire music collection, select the Sync all music checkbox.

Next, click Sync.

To sync podcasts

The procedure is similar as above. In the Windows Phone app for desktop, click Podcasts.

Next, from the sync list, select how many episodes would you want to sync and whether you want to sync unplayed episodes only.

Select the Sync all podcasts check-box if you would like to sync all your podcasts.
Finally, click Sync.

For adding ringtones

Click Ringtones in the Windows Phone app for desktop.

Select a song you’d like to use as ringtones on your phone, then click Add

On your phone, in the App list, tap Settings > Ringtones + sounds.

In the Ringtones list, choose the one you want to use.

That’s it! Please note that some protected (DRM) media files can’t be copied or synchronized between your PC and your Windows Phone.

For settings in Windows Phone app for desktop, like how to automatically import photos and videos from your phone to your computer, how to resize pictures before adding them to your phone, how to convert videos before adding them to your phone and so on, check this page for information.

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.


  1. Rob

    The directions for adding playlists is completely bogus! The app has no way to add playlists. Not sure where you got your directions but they are wrong!

  2. Maybe things changed in the later versions….

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