1. swingerofbirch's Avatar
    I've been a smartphone holdout not wanting to pay extra for data, but my family just switched us over to T-Mobile and our family plan includes data either way, so I figured I'd take advantage of it and bought the cheapest smartphone I could find: The Lumia 521.

    I'm not a luddite by any means. I've carried around an iPod touch for years and have used that, but I just never wanted to pay for data, which is why I've held out for so long. I realize the 521 is probably not representative of the Windows Phone experience overall, as it's such an entry level device.

    Two questions I have:

    1) Is there any way to get the status bar (signal strength, etc.) to permanently appear? I haven't found this setting, if it exists. Just by playing around I figured out I can get it to appear by swiping down from the top. I don't get the purpose of it hiding.

    2) Am I missing something or does Microsoft not making a mapping application? I was sure with their years developing Bing, they'd have one. My phone came with several Nokia applications for mapping. Haven't tried them out yet, and they may be fine, but I was surprised Microsoft didn't have its own.

    Otherwise, I'm getting used to this, I think. I do miss my Send/End buttons, but that's part of being in the smartphone world, I guess!
    06-12-2014 06:15 PM
  2. bushwhacked's Avatar
    HERE is the maps used and it is a great little app
    06-12-2014 06:31 PM
  3. anon(6038817)'s Avatar
    I used a Lumia 521 as my primary smartphone for several months and was very impressed with it, being an entry-level device.

    In fact, I believe it to be the best smartphone available for the money - even more so than comparably priced Android offerings.

    I honestly don't remember if there was a setting to permanently show the status bar, but it wasn't a problem for me to just swipe down from the top when needed.

    I hope you enjoy your new device!
    06-12-2014 09:05 PM
  4. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    Hi and welcome to WPCentral. 😊

    The signal strength appears constantly in Windows Phone 8.1. I'm using the Preview for Developers, but the official release will be coming soon.

    Sent from my Nokia Lumia 920 using Tapatalk
    06-12-2014 09:21 PM
  5. benrp's Avatar
    Regarding you're question about maps Microsoft does have Bing Maps but that has been replaced by HERE maps on Nokia phones. Microsoft now has "rights equivalent to ownership" of HERE maps as well so in a way they kind of half own that too.
    swingerofbirch likes this.
    06-12-2014 09:48 PM
  6. Ed Boland's Avatar
    Regarding you're question about maps Microsoft does have Bing Maps but that has been replaced by HERE maps on Nokia phones. Microsoft now has "rights equivalent to ownership" of HERE maps as well so in a way they kind of half own that too.
    No, Bing maps has NOT been replaced by HERE maps. They both exist as two entirely separate mapping apps and are both still available in the Windows Phone store. The Nokia phones come with HERE maps preinstalled yes.

    And as far as the Microsoft purchasing Nokia thing, I thought they only purchased Nokia's handset and hardware division.. And that Nokia's mapping services (HERE, Drive, etc) still belongs to Nokia.
    Guytronic and swingerofbirch like this.
    06-12-2014 10:09 PM
  7. TechAbstract's Avatar
    You can still get Bing Maps in WP8 through the Store. Bing maps comes default on WP8.1.
    Maps | Windows Phone Apps+Games Store (United States)
    swingerofbirch likes this.
    06-12-2014 10:24 PM
  8. anon(7900571)'s Avatar
    Ahoy welcome to wpcentral :)
    Guytronic and swingerofbirch like this.
    06-13-2014 01:27 AM
  9. James8561's Avatar
    Though the Lumia 521 may be entry level, it is an excellent device and over 1/3 of all users on WP use something almost identical (520). In fact, the 521 accounts for almost 1/3 of all WP devices sold in the US so I'd say it is very much representative of WP. You will enjoy it a lot more when the next version of WP is released. Good luck with your first smartphone!
    swingerofbirch likes this.
    06-13-2014 01:53 AM
  10. hopmedic's Avatar
    Welcome to WPCentral! Looks like your questions have already been answered well, so I'll let those answers stand. We're glad to have you here.
    swingerofbirch likes this.
    06-13-2014 04:20 PM
  11. swingerofbirch's Avatar
    Thanks for all the quick responses! I'm enjoying the phone as I get used to it. Using the back button takes a while to get used to, as I'm used to that being software-based on the iPod touch. But it's a very nice phone. I'm surprised such an inexpensive phone is getting the update--looking forward to it.
    06-13-2014 05:33 PM
  12. swingerofbirch's Avatar
    I just said hello and I can't believe I already have to say goodbye. My dad was the one who got our whole family to switch to T-mobile, so I was trying to put a positive spin on it, but he finally admitted tonight it was untenable--we don't get reception in our house or even driveway. They were sending us a signal booster, but that wouldn't help in other parts of our city. So, we switched back to Verizon as of tonight. I was planning on keeping my Lumia 521 since I didn't have a legitimate reason to return it to Amazon, and right after I ported my number back, I dropped the Lumia and cracked the screen—badly. I'm not upset. It was $69, and now I can say I've experienced Windows Phone. Since Verizon is more expensive, I'll be sticking with my dumb phone for now (I do have to say though, I like having my send/receive buttons back).

    Thank you for all the welcomes. I really do love trying new things with technology, so it wasn't a waste.
    Guytronic likes this.
    06-15-2014 01:25 AM
  13. Zulfigar's Avatar
    Maybe we'll see you back by the end of the year. ;)
    anon(7900571) likes this.
    06-15-2014 01:47 AM
  14. Ed Boland's Avatar
    Just pick up another 521 or whatever prepaid Windows Phone Verizon has...
    06-15-2014 08:01 PM

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