A lot of people get bored of their smartphone after a while, but delay making the switch to another device or platform to avoid going through all the hassle of transferring contacts and media to the new phone. If you are thinking of going to a new device that uses the same platform, things aren’t too messy, but if you are planning to give Windows Phone a try after using Android, Blackberry or iOS, then you are in for a long and troubling few days. As Windows Phone hasn’t gone too mainstream till now, there are not many tools that help people get started with their devices. Maybe this is why the folks over at Nokia have decided to take matters into their own hands, and have collaborated with Mark/Space to come up with a solution named Welcome Home. With Welcome Home, you don’t have to worry about a thing if you are switching from any other smartphone platform to, say, your new Lumia. The application copies all your photos, videos, contacts and even apps to your new Windows Phone, and that too without requiring too much work from the user.
If your current device is an iPhone (or any other iOS device) you will need to have iTunes installed on your PC or Mac before being able to use Welcome Home. No extra tool is required for Android or Blackberry. Here is everything you need to do in order to make your newly-purchased Windows Phone device truly yours.
- Download the tool for your computer by heading to the official Mark/Space page for Welcome Home (link provided at the end of the article). Both PC and Mac versions of the application are available there.
- Install Welcome Home to your computer. The application might ask your permission to download and install some extra files at this stage.
- Once the installation is complete, launch Welcome Home.
- Plug in your current non-Windows Phone device to your computer. If it’s an iOS device, it is better to sync it with iTunes before proceeding.
- After your device has been properly synced with iTunes, hit the Next button.
- In the step named Scanning Data, you will have to choose the items that you want to transfer to your Windows Phone. The listed data items include apps, contacts, calendars, music, photos and videos. You can uncheck any item that you don’t want to carry over to your Windows Phone.
- The first thing scanned by Welcome Home is your old device’s app list. If the exact app isn’t available in the Marketplace yet, the tool will recommend apps that offer similar functionalities. The apps listed by Welcome Home come with QR codes so that you can install them to your phone quickly and easily. It is also possible to export the app suggestions in the form of a PDF file. Hit the Save button to do that.
- If you don’t have an email client installed on your computer, you will be asked to enter your login credentials for the account from which you want to import contacts. Once that has been done, your contact list and calendar will be imported by Welcome Home to be synced with your Windows Phone later.
- All the photos and videos found in your old device are copied to your computer. The same works for music, but with a slight twist; only DRM-free songs are recognized by Welcome Home, and the rest will just be ignored.
When you are finished, close Welcome Home and connect your new phone to your computer. All the data copied by the tool will be synced with your Windows Phone phone via Zune! The application is available for free, and is a must-have for everyone planning to switch to Windows Phone from another platform.