Windows Phone localization style guides – 5 languages added

We currently make Windows Phone localization style guides available for free in almost 50 languages to help app developers create and localize Windows Phone apps. We've now added 5 new languages and improved the guidelines for the existing languages.

These localization style guides help you ensure that your user interface follows the best practices for creating apps on a mobile platform like Windows Phone. They provide detailed guidelines for localizing text for mobile devices where the style rules can differ from traditional desktop applications due to space restrictions in the UI. They also provide instructions to help ensure that your apps and content speak to the user in the same style, tone, and level of formality as Microsoft products. For example, should you address your user with please or you in your app, and what level of formality should you use in your market? Getting the style right ensures that your app feels like a native app because it looks and “speaks” to the user like native Windows Phone apps

In addition to the 5 new languages posted, we've also overhauled the section Windows Phone UI Localization Guidelines in the existing style guides to make it easier to follow the layout restrictions and guidelines for small form-factors (like smartphone screens).

You'll now get precise guidelines on whether text wrapping is allowed in the UI, and how many lines of text are possible. You also get information on the right use of upper-case and lower-case capitalization. This can be very handy to know before you create your UI, especially for languages that typically need more characters than English to express commands, labels, and messages. Here's an example from the German Windows Phone style guide:

And in the following example, the style guide specifies how long your button label is allowed to be in German. Note that the button label is all lower-case in English, but needs to start with upper-case in German. Again, knowing this up-front can be a timesaver instead of having to fix all your UI just before you publish your app.

For check box labels, you can wrap the text up to a maximum of 3 lines. Again, handy to know for languages that need more space, such as German and Finnish.

You'll find the new and updated Style Guides for these languages and many more on the Style Guide download section of the Microsoft Language Portal.

Translations of key Windows Phone 8.1 terminology and phrases in over 50 languages--such as rate and review, pin to start, refresh and share--are already available in over 50 languages via the Microsoft Language Portal online search.

For more internationalization guidance for Windows Phone, visit the globalization and localization pages of the Windows Dev Center at  

Comments (0)

Skip to main content