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Deploy Windows Phone 8 App to Test Device within Visual Studio 2012

To deploy Windows Phone 8 app to a test device, I mean to a registered Windows Phone 8 smartphone app developers can use Visual Studio 2012. Deploying Windows Phone 8 app code to a real hardware device is as easy as testing and debugging your app on Windows Phone emulator.

Windows Phone 8 app development requries Visual Studio 2012 or Blend as long as you have the Windows Phone SDK 8.0 But for a successfull Windows Phone 8 app development lifecyle, programmers need more than a powerful integrated development environment (IDE). One of the basic steps to complete is to test Windows Phone 8 app. Testing and debugging Windows Phone 8 apps is a vital process like in all development projects.

To test and debug Windows Phone apps developers can of course use Microsoft Visual Studio 2012. Visual Studio 2012 provides different emulators that can be used to test your Windows Phone development on a virtual device. After testing and debugging your application on a virtual Windows Phone 8 smartphone emulator, you will want to see how your app works on a real device. All programmers want to see their apps running on a real phone to test and debug for possible bugs before deploying Windows Phone 8 app to Store.

Deploy Windows Phone 8 App to Test Device

In order to test your app on real device running Windows Phone 8, for example on a Nokia Lumia 920 smartphone like in my case, first register your phone at Windows Phone Dev Center. If you have already registered your Windows Phone 8, connect your device to your development PC using connection cable. Unlock your phone if it is protected by a password.

Launch Visual Studio 2012 and open Windows Phone 8 app project.

In debug menu or on top menu bar as seen in below screenshot, select Device from dropdownlist instead of Emulator options. And press to start deploying Windows Phone 8 app to connected registered Windows Phone device.

Visual Studio emulator options to test Windows Phone apps
Start Windows Phone 8 app project deployment to a real WP8 device within Microsoft Visual Studio 2012

After VS2012 Windows Phone project is deployed and installed on your Windows Phone device, you can test and debug it while it is connected to your PC.

Since the installation of the Windows Phone app is completed, you can also run your app until you remove it manually. Here are some screenshots of my Lights Out toogle game app on my Nokia Lumia 920 Windows Phone. As you see your app will be listed in all apps list, you can pin it on Start screen using all defined tile templates and run it.

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