Personalize my lock screen

Missed calls, upcoming appointments, new messages, unread email—there's a lot you can check on your phone when you've got a spare minute. But sometimes you've only got a few seconds. That's where your lock screen comes in. It makes a single glance go a long way, and you can personalize it with the notifications you care about most, as well as an image to match your mood.

Lock screen with callouts showing alarm status, detailed status, and quick status icons.
Choose a custom background and must-have app notifications for your lock screen

Choose your background

You can change the background on your lock screen at any time. Liven things up with a favorite photo, get regularly updated lock screen images from Bing, or let a third-party app make changes to your background for you.

  1. In the App list, tap Settings Settings icon > Lock screen.

  2. Under Background, if you're choosing a background for the first time, tap Choose background. If not, tap the name of the app or service currently providing your background.

  3. Do one of the following:

    • To choose a photo for your background from those stored on your phone, tap Photo, tap Change photo, flick to the album containing the photo you want to use, and then tap the photo. Pinch your fingers together on the screen or stretch them apart to zoom out or in, and then tap Crop Crop iconwhen the image is framed the way you want it.
    • To get periodically updated images from Bing, tap Bing.
    • To let an app change your background for you, tap name of app, and then tap Open app.
Lock screen settings menu
Go to your lock screen settings to choose your background and notifications


  • You can open a lock screen app from the App list too, and then set it as your background through the app.
  • Some lock screen apps may perform background tasks, which means they can do things behind the scenes, even when they're not open. This can take a toll on your phone's battery life, so you might want to block certain apps from running background tasks. To see and block apps that do this, in the App list, tap Settings Settings icon, flick to Applications, and then tap Background tasks.
  • Some lock screen apps update the background image periodically. This feature may require a data connection. To learn more, see Types of connections.


  • When you're listening to music while your phone's locked, your phone can show you the artist who's currently playing instead of your regular background image. To turn this feature on, in the App list, tap Settings Settings icon > Lock screen, and then turn on Show artist when playing music Toggle icon. Stopping the music from the lock screen will fade the artist or album art back to the lock screen image.
  • To see your new lock screen image right away after choosing a background, press the Power Power button button to turn your phone off, and then press it again to turn it back on.

Choose your notifications

There are two kinds of app notifications you'll see on your lock screen: detailed status and quick status. You have a limited number of notifications that can fit on the screen, so think carefully about which apps you want to use to fill them. But don't worry—you can change these at any time in your lock screen settings.

Detailed status

When you choose to show a detailed status notification for an app, you'll get a lot of info in just a little space. View upcoming calendar appointments, including their subject, location, and time. See the sender and first line of that text or email you just got. Or check the name or phone number of the person who just tried to call you. You can have one detailed status notification showing on your lock screen at a time.

  1. In the App list, tap Settings Settings icon > Lock screen.

  2. Under Notifications, tap Choose an app to show detailed status, and then choose an app from the list.

Quick status

When all you want is an update, a quick status notification is just what you need. Set up a row of these little guys to see how many missed calls, new voice mail messages, new text messages, unread emails, social network updates, and game notifications you have waiting for you the next time you unlock your phone. You can fill up to five of these slots.

  1. In the App list, tap Settings Settings icon > Lock screen.

  2. Under Notifications, tap one of the Choose an app to show quick status slots, and then choose an app from the list.


  • The order of the quick status slots in the settings menu corresponds to their order on your lock screen, so mix and match apps in whatever order you please.
  • Not all the apps on your phone have lock screen notifications that you can set. You'll see a list of available apps in the lock screen settings when you choose which notifications you want to see.

Screen time-out and password

You can customize more than just the look of your lock screen—the screen time-out length and password are yours to tweak as well from the lock screen settings.

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