Microsoft investigating reported Windows Phone 8 reboots

Microsoft investigating reported Windows Phone 8 reboots

Summary: Some Windows Phone 8 users (including yours truly) are experiencing spontaneous reboots and email sync problems. Microsoft officials say they are investigating.


Windows Phone 8 devices just started hitting the market, but a number of users are reporting spontaneous reboots and email-sync issues with various devices on different carriers.

I had not had any issues with my loaner HTC 8X Windows Phone 8 on AT&T, which I've been testing since October 29 -- until yesterday, that is. This morning, my email accounts, as well as my Microsoft Account, were stuck in an endless loop of continually trying to sync. This was not happening on my Windows Phone 7 device (an HTC Trophy on Verizon). My Windows Phone 8 device also spontaneously rebooted this morning for the first time.


Checking Microsoft's forums, as well as the WPCentral forums, I've seen some users claim that uninstalling the Skype for Windows Phone 8 preview app, which Microsoft released last week, may fix the rebooting issue. (I tried uninstalling the Skype preview, but still couldn't get my email to resync until I wiped and restored the HTC 8X.)

I asked Microsoft officials whether there was any word on what's causing the reported reboot and email sync issues. The official statement: "We are currently investigating reports of these incidents." 

Over the weekend, I went to my local Verizon store and checked out the Windows Phone 8 display. (This is in midtown New York City, for those wondering.) Unlike the case when Windows 7 launched, Verizon was featuring two Windows Phone 8 devices -- the HTC 8X and the Nokia Lumia 822 -- quite prominently. The bad news? Very few HTC 8Xs were available on Saturday, three days after Verizon said devices would be available. This wasn't because of brisk sales; it was because the store had received very few units and only in black, a sales associate told me. I ordered the HTC 8X in California Blue and am due to receive shipment this week.

Back to the reported Windows Phone 8 reboots/email problems. Officials with the Skype team had no comment as to whether there is any connection between the Skype Preview and these issues. They referred all questions to the Windows Phone team.

I realize I am just one tiny data point here, but I had no problems with the HTC 8X until I logged into Skype for Windows 8 last night and my Hotmail and Skype contacts merged. That possible coincidence aside, a number of users were complaining of reboot/sync problems before the Skype preview for Windows Phone 8 app was available publicly. So Skype may not be to blame at all.

If there are further updates from the Windows Phone or Skype teams, I'll update this post.

Topics: Smartphones, Microsoft, Windows


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • no issues for me

    I got my HTC on Friday one odd thing is that the Verizon rep could not open a search for the Blue phone as the SKU had changed in the system or that's what I was told so I settled for the black phone works great way better that my old Droid X.
    Sean Westcott
    • My main issue

      Is that all the Lumias from Telstra are sold out in Australia. I need to wait another 7 days until they restock.

      Never mind I think I want the HTC anyway, even with MJF's problem ;-)
    • I have three HTC 8x's and no problems with T-Mobile

      Got three HTC 8x's from Staples for $149 each plus $50 back for trading in my piece of @!& android Intercepts which came out to about $100 per phone. All are working fantastically. Microsoft has a real hit on it's hands and this is by far the best phone OS you can get. In fact the phone guy at Staples fell in love with the phone why he was activating mine and said he is trading in his iPhone for it. My only complaint is that it could be more compatible with the Window 8 on my Samsung ATIV tablet (which is also outstanding if you can find one) for gesters like swiping down to close a window or swiping up from the bottom which I find myself trying on the phone all the time. The polycarbonate casing on the HTC feels great to hold, not slippery at all the like the Galaxy SIII. This phone and OS is a knock out punch to Android and iOS that's why you hear all the fuss about reboots (from all the iFanboys and iMedia) even if it is happening due to an app or something (I have not had one yet on three phones) it will surely be fixed by Microsoft since they control the updates. My android phones constantly ran like dogs and Google does not update the OS but rather the hardware vendors so getting operating system updates sucks with Android. The great thing about Windows Phone and tablets is that my calendar is automatically synced with my live account, even my profile photo is the same on the phone and tablet so it doesn't matter which tablet you log into. Looks like Microsoft has out Cooled Apple and without Steve Jobs, Apple is in trouble.
  • Interesting...

    My Droid X running Android used to reboot every 3rd time I tried to open the facebook app. And i never saw ZDNet screaming that bug from the rafters...
    • The point is that WP8 is akin to iOS, id est "walled garden" approach, ...

      ... which is much more stable (more my year of use of iPhone 4S I never had reboot after any applications opened; and I have about 400 of applications installed). So it is unusual for WP8 to reboot; this should not happening.

      Reboots are fine in Android, since there is no way how Google programmers could test the OS with all of possible combinations of hardware. And with some of custom skins that manufacturers invent on their own.

      This is not because Google has any worse programmer, it is just because lesser stability and compatibility is consequence of "open"/"fragmented" approach towards the platform.
      • With the BB Bold

        I used to have to pull the battery out all the time to reboot the thing, horribly unstable.
        Alan Smithie

        AMOF, it is other way around, walled garden approach, that is what actually sucks from the quality point of view. Remember Blue Screen of Death? malware by any chance? breaking down, slow and sluggish ntfs drives, aging Windows? Apple iOS awesome maps, epic Java vulnerable stupidity and greed?
        Adobe flashplayer crap is probably the iconic one that just shouts quite load to you : "Proprietary, ergo crap".
      • Warped logic

        Taking your logic as correct, Windows operating systems should be the safest. All the worms, bugs and viruses must be figment of imagination.

        Also iOS Maps should be the best.

        You lost all credibility here have nothing intelligent to offer.
        Van Der
        • Windows is also fragmented, so as platform it is less stable

          @Van Der: but Windows *Phone* is totally different thing; it is "walled garden" project.
          • Your wrong. You dont seem to get the term "fragmented"

            Nice try, but...FAIL.

            Why do we have to see this kind of thing. Windows 8 is fragmented???

            Well, explain that. How many Windows RT devices are running different versions of Windows RT? NONE. All the same OS.

            How many Windows phone 8 devices are running different versions of WP8????

            NONE. All the same OS.

            Now, if your going to say "but WP8 and Windows RT are different!" well so is iOS and OSX. You dingbat. They are different because they are not even the same kind of device. Apple phones are not fragmented and neither is OSX, at least generally speaking.

            Android smartphones are fragmented because significantly different versions of the Android OS can be found on different brands of handsets.

            This is what OS fragmentation referes to. If you didnt know that, well now you do.

            You have no excuse now for making yourself sound like a clueless idiot who speaks about things he apperantly knows little to nothing about.

            Next time you say that Windows is fragmented people will just know your a liar because they will know you know the truth and are not just sadly misinformed.
    • And Yet

      My Droid Razr Maxx has never rebooted unexpectedly for any reason. There are times when it sits kind of unresponsive, but that only lasts a few seconds (seems like more when you REALLY want the app to launch). Anecdotal evidence isn't what Mary Jo is talking about except when she says it happens to her as well.
  • What Makes it "California" Blue?

    The water? Though if it was "Jeresy" blue, most would just call it was "dark brown"
    William Farrel
    • self image problems

      usualy result in a desire to insult. I take it you've never been to Jersey shore.
  • Two so far

    I got my black Verizon 8X on 11/15 and have had two reboots so far. I haven't had the Skype preview installed.

    One thing I have noticed, though, is that I haven't had a reboot while my phone is in Airplane Mode, which is generally all throughout the workday due to a lack of reception. I do keep WiFi on, however, which makes me wonder if it's related to the cellular data network stack.

    I'd kill for something like Event Viewer on these things, though.
    • Interesting

      I've been lucky I suppose. I haven't had any reboots. The only major issues I've had is it didn't have a product key, so it wouldn't let me add my Microsoft account. I had to call MS and get a product key. This is for the 8X on Verizon. A rare but not unheard of issue, something to do with the load at the factory. Happened on WP7 and 7.5 sometimes too from what I read.

      The other annoying thing is sometimes when replying to an email it starts typing, then erases what i type and the cursor moves to the end of my signature. Outside of that it's fantastic.
  • This field is required

    My 920 has not had any issues, but I have never used skype
  • Microsoft investigating reported Windows Phone 8 reboots

    I haven't seen or heard of any reboots with Microsoft Window Phone 8. This is the way these types of issues should be handled. If there is a suspected issue then it should be investigated and if need be a patch issued. This is very different than the Apple model where they deny there is any issue or the android linux model where you have to fix it yourself. Kudos to Microsoft for showing the proper way for it to be done.
    Loverock Davidson-
    • Microsoft Window?

      A Freudian slip there?
      • That is the new name

        All versions of Window (pun intended) that relies on the tile / single window version of the OS (i.e. Windows Phone & Windows RT) should drop the "s" from the name as you cannot have more than one window displayed at any time!
        • nope

          That isnt true! You can have two window open same time! ;-)