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Which Windows Live ID should I use?

If you're not sure which Windows Live ID you should use to sign in to your Windows Phone for the first time, this topic can help you choose the ID that'll work best for you.

Choosing a Windows Live ID

If you have more than one Windows Live ID, you'll need to choose just one to sign in to your phone. Some IDs are harder to change than others, and once you sign in, you can't change your mind (at least not without the risk of losing information or purchases).

If you're not sure what a Windows Live ID is (or whether you have one already), see What is a Windows Live ID?

Note

If you use a Windows Live ID associated with either your Zune or Xbox LIVE account, the locale associated with that account will also be the language and country/region you'll use to buy things from Marketplace. After a locale has been associated with your Marketplace account, it can't be changed. To learn more, see How to change the Windows Live ID on your Windows Phone .

If you use a different email address for Xbox LIVE and Zune

Unfortunately, you can't combine Xbox LIVE and Zune accounts, so you'll need to decide which one has the information you most want to preserve.

What you get with your Xbox LIVE ID

If you sign in with the email address you use for your gamertag, you get your gamerscore, avatar, and all of your achievements on your phone. When you play games on the phone, you'll earn more achievements, and your gamerscore will grow.

What you get with your Zune ID

If you sign in with your Zune ID, you can use your Zune Music Pass, badges, favorites, friend list, and ratings. You'll also be able to play videos you've bought or downloaded on your phone.

Pros and cons

Think of which info you most want to use on the phone, and sign in with that ID. Then create a new account for the other info using the same email address and password. For example:

If you cancel your Zune Music Pass, you'll lose your badges, favorites, ratings, and so forth. But you can still play the MP3s that you bought, and once you set up your new Zune Music Pass, you can link your phone to your new account in the Zune software and play all the music you downloaded using the old Pass.

If you cancel your Xbox LIVE account and create a new one, you won't be able to transfer your gamerscore and achievements to your new account.

So choose the account that's most important to you and sign in with that ID. Then create a new account of the other kind using the same email address. For example, sign in with your Xbox LIVE ID, then create a new Zune account using the same ID.

If you use a different email address for Xbox LIVE and Hotmail

On your Xbox 360 console, try changing your Xbox LIVE gamertag to use your Hotmail account. If that's not possible, we recommend signing in with your Xbox LIVE ID and adding your Hotmail account later at Settings > Email + accounts. That way you can still get your email, calendar, and contacts from your Hotmail account on your phone.

If you use a different email address for Zune and Hotmail

In the Zune software on your computer, try changing your Zune account to use your Hotmail address. If that's not possible, we recommend signing in with your Zune ID and adding your Hotmail account later from Settings > Email + accounts. That way you can still get your email, calendar, and contacts from your Hotmail account on your phone.

Note

Some of the features or services discussed in this article may not be available in your country or region.

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